Thursday, March 20, 2008

Hats off to Bill (all three of them)

Bill Dwight will probably choke on his coffee with this analogy but my appearance on his radio show this morning reminded me of my first appearance on the O’Reilly Factor TV show four years ago to discuss Amherst being the only High School in the nation to perform ‘Vagina Monologues.’

Bill O’Reilly obviously agreed with my stand (the show should not go on) so there was no verbal sparring. And the other Bill this morning agreed that the parade is a celebration not a protest, so we had nothing to fight about either (darn—I had even stretched out before heading to Hamp.)

Yeah, I am getting a tad spoiled by blogging as I did let slip the word “bitch”. WHMP has an eight second delay but allowed it on the air since context is everything and the FCC would not mind me calling Osama Bid Laden a son of a bitch.

Bill Dwight also said he would march in the Amherst July 4'th Parade, so maybe we can place him next to the Town Manger.

Yesterday a mole in the Amherst Town Democratic Committee gave us a draft letter they are still working on (since late February no less):

The Amherst Town Democratic Committee may be interested in participating in the 4’th of July Parade in downtown Amherst this year.

Please kindly regard this as our official application to participate. We anticipate that those parading may exercise the rights that the U.S. Constitution, including the 1’st Amendment, guarantees to all Americans.

Please let us know in writing whether this will be acceptable. We would appreciate a reply with the next month.

Sincerely Yours,

H Oldham Brooks
Chair of the Democratic Committee

Of course Mr. Brooks is no longer Chair having lost the election last week to more moderate Leo Maley and extremist Mary Wentworth also lost reelection as Vice Chair.

See what happens when you lead your organization into an ill-conceived war?

During the second 15 minute segment we mostly talked about the current “only in Amherst” episode splashed on the Front Page of today’s Gazette where the Middle School administrators censored an article in the school newspaper unflattering to the institution.

The kids polled 175 students and discovered as Bill Dwight so aptly put it “school sucks” (yes, I guess you can say that on the radio). The school spiked the story and ACLU spokesman Bill Newman has already gotten involved.

So the school system that allowed teen agers to use the C-word, and feign masturbation to orgasm on stage as part of the their First Amendment rights censor Middle Schoolers who express unflattering sentiments about the venerable school system.

As Bill Newman said in 1999 at a rally I organized in favor of ‘West Side Story,’ after the school cancelled it: “The way to counter bad speech is with good speech, not suppression.” Amen.
UPDATE: Friday 6:15 PM Besides the AP, the story was also picked up by these folks:
DC news blog
Crusty Gazette Comments
And the next day as well


maryd said...

The article in The Republican said that "the paper has published similar polls on other topics using the same methods."
I've never seen or heard of the student newspaper at the middle school. The high school sends theirs home regularly by mail.

LarryK4 said...

If I were a highly paid bureaucrat in the venerable Amherst School system my (lack of) response would be a simple shrug…they are kids--how can you take it so seriously?

So when that 17-year-old Puerto Rican girl came before the School Committee in 1999 with a petition signed by 158 kids opposing the play 'West Side Story' I would have said "Thanks...I admire your spunk, and I will pass this along… (To the Committee on dumb ass petitions)"

But six months earlier when that twit white kid came in with a petition signed by 300 kids requesting off-campus privileges so underage high school kids could smoke cigarettes, I would have slapped him (figuratively speaking of course).

Greg said...

For anyone who's interested, we've made the issue in question available for download over at the Local Buzz blog:

Larry, missed you on the radio this morning but am looking forward to giving that segment a listen once it's posted online.

-- Greg

LarryK4 said...

Hey Greg,
Yeah, it was great fun (as with my interview will Bill Peters, I had consumed copious amounts of caffeine).

But you know me; I really need somebody to get kind of combative--just to keep it interesting.

Maybe Mr. Vannah will invite me on his show someday at WHMP.

O'Reilly said...

Open Letter to the Amherst Town Democratic Committee:

You may not participate in the July 4th Parade if you insist on using the parade to further your political goals by using the parade route audience as an audience for your political agenda.

When I got your letter, it was as if you specifically requested precisely what we explicitly have indicated is not welcome. You seem to have trouble accepting our prerogative. Please stop sticking your finger in my eye. It is annoying and you seem dense or stubborn. Is that anyway to advance you cause?

If you agree to not use the parade as an opportunity to protest, and you agree to carry a sign, one sign that has the name of your organization, “Amherst Town Democratic Committee” then you may participate.

The Parade Committee is determined to hold a family parade that is a celebration of our Independence from England and not a protest. We choose to reinforce this purpose by making the condition required of all groups that are marching that they do not use the parade as an opportunity to protest whether they are Democrats, Republicans, Green Party, Police, Firemen, Boy Scouts, and Girl Scouts, all. All are welcome to march, under the condition that they do not protest.

I admit, this would be a good audience for protesting many political issues and that is why we have taken this decision. Amherst loves her free speech right to protest lawfully. We too have rights, the right of association. Ask your lawyer about it. But a parade with protests would necessarily changes the nature of the parade to a result we choose to avoid. There is nothing that keeps your group and other political organizations from organizing a parade that suits your purposes of political expression at another time. You may also stand in the audience of our parade (not march) and carry your political protest signs, although obviously our Parade Committee would appreciate it if you do not.

Man-up you libral freak. Stop whining about not getting your way.

Your righteousness is in all its glory, in rare form and on display for all to see.

Your sniveling is weak and effeminate.

Think that‘d get their goat?

LarryK4 said...

Umm...yeah, that probably would.

Although personally--not speaking for the Parade Committee--it works for me.