Thursday, September 27, 2007

Public School bans niece of MLK from speaking...

The Des Moines Register has reported that Dr. Alveda King was scheduled to speak at Roosevelt High School in Des Moines, Iowa. about civil rights, morals, values, STDs, and relationships. Dr. King is a supporter of Brownback's presidential bid and a frequent guest speaker around the country, and she has appearances slated for Iowa State and Drake universities. Yet we cannot have a open forum on "morals" in our public schools. Listen to what the school's principal said:

Danielson, who previewed King's presentation, said that
"quite a bit of it does talk about civil rights, but there is a connection to
morals. ... It was scheduled to take place during the school day, cutting into
class time, and we just thought it was best to cancel it."

Oh no, a connection to morals! Whatever happened to free and open debate? Open forums? The president of the school's PTA stated that there would not be an opposing viewpoint, naming that it would be unhealthy because there would be no one giving the opposing view: namely, the joys of promiscuity, unwanted pregnancies, and multiple abortions. But since when is there a mandate that an opposing view be given every time a speaker is invited to talk? I was unaware that our public schools instituted a "fairness doctrine" requiring speech codes and "eqaul time" for opposing viewpoints.

Whether or not you are pro-life, this is a disturbing situation. Dr. King is a civil rights activist, and her talk emphasizes her experience in the civil rights struggle and how it is informed by her moral and religious views. When schools cease to become generators of knowledge and ideas and instead become fixated on propagating just one ideology or viewpoint, we all lose out. Open those classroom doors: allow any and all discussion on issues on which we can disagree within reasonable bounds. Sadly, many high schools seem to be following the example of universities who seek to silence those who disagree with the establishment line.

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