Thursday, September 10, 2020

The Ugly Side


If there’s any theme to today’s post it would have to be “things that are really ticking me off.” The local scene seems to be bubbling up with them lately. I apologize for being the bearer of bad tidings but perhaps it will briefly take your mind off of national events.

First off today is a letter to the editor in the Columbia Flier from a former member of the CA Board who shows a good bit of misunderstanding/ignorance of the First Amendment and Free Speech. I’m not even going to delve into the rest of what he says. Remember, friends, the First Amendment protects you from criminal prosecution for what you say. It does not protect you from the consequences of what you say - - losing your job, for instance. 

A test on the First Amendment is not specifically a requirement for serving on the CA Board, but, gosh. Understanding it would be helpful.

Next up is the random person on Twitter who screen-grabbed a happy Howard County teacher’s photo of their back to school “swag bag” and reported it to Donald Trump. Why? Because, nestled in with items of teachery goodness, was the book “White Fragility”. Yes, the Howard County School System has been reported for being guilty of “indoctrination”. 

Does the future hold searches of teacher tote bags in order to confiscate books disapproved by the current (national) Executive? How many of our coworkers and neighbors see themselves as citizen reporters as this poster clearly did? Creepy.

And, lastly, this exchange which made me ashamed of having any association with Howard County whatsoever:

Speaker A: Howard County is not Baltimore - something its residents seem proud of.

Speaker B: Howard County is in Maryland. We are a suburb of Baltimore - we are pretty proud of that - except when the trash from the city takes the bus to our little town...

I don’t have adequate words to respond to this. 

Sorry to be such a downer today. For a change of pace I recommend listening to the recent episode of Elevate Maryland with Baltimore City Council member Ryan Dorsey. It’s intelligent, informative, and manages to be hopeful at a time when hope is in short supply. 

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