Madison School Board Needs Diversity–Just Anyone With Common Sense


The Madison School Board needs to find a more diverse board.  Not in terms of ethnicity.  But in terms of common sense.

I was most embarrassed when my favorite daily read, The New York Times, had to report this morning on the happenings at Madison West High School.  I am never pleased when the city where I live, and which I love, has news of this type which everyone is talking about.

Even Cher!  Yes, her!

Many residents of this city are stupefied at what happened this week.  A black security guard at West High School said he was defending himself from a student who called him the N-word, repeating the word as he told the student not to use the slur, which led to his termination.

This story is so ridiculous that any book editor would scold a writer from creating such dribble.  But what passes for outlandish to everyone else is a policy at Madison schools. The matter of being too pure has once again met the reality test.  And the whole city gets tarred in the process by those looking in at us.

The purity test, such as with language, is never a good idea. It just always underscores the lack of awareness about an issue in an attempt to ram-rod rigidity into a code of conduct.  When an employee of the school district used the ‘n’ word in an attempt to create a teaching moment with a student who had hurled all sorts of words, including the ‘n; word, the hand of the all-knowing code of conduct fell hard.

As this now national story underscores there is a problem at Madison Schools.  This school board is out of touch.  With their zeal to be so strident against racism and inequities, they have also thrown out common sense, logic, and reason.

They have, however, reaped the scorn of just about everyone who has read this act of stupidity, which now has a legal angle that will doubtless arrive and be costly.   That is fine with me as stupidity should cost money from those who need to learn a lesson.  Otherwise, as Sheldon might say, “How will they learn?”

Late today the Wisconsin State Journal posted their story about Cher coming to the rescue with fiancing for the lawsuit.

As West High School students walked out of school Friday to protest the firing of a black Madison security guard for using the N-word to correct a student, the former employee got a major boost from an unexpected corner.

Celebrity dynamo Cher sent a tweet to her 3.7 million followers Friday offering to pay the legal expenses for Marlon Anderson, who was fired Wednesday for the incident earlier this month.

I wonder if others in this city now think perhaps a vote for David Blaska for the board this past April would have been a good idea.  I supported his bid and know my vote was the correct one.

Now more than ever.