When I was in school, my teachers often urged us to be politically active. Since I went to school in Georgia, they might have preferred my politics lean right, but over and over again they reiterated that it was more important that I be involved than to simply mimic their personal stances. I was already following politics by then, paying far more attention to the news than any kid my age had any business doing, so they probably weren’t speaking to me so much as the class as a whole.
Frankly, I respected that they were more interested in us making stands than making their stands.
The parent of a child whose teacher asked his students to pen letters asking Congress to enact stricter gun laws urged parents to “be vigilant” regarding what their children are taught and told.
According to a Blue Lives Matter report, the assignment from seventh-grade teacher Corey Sanders asked students “to pressure lawmakers to have stricter gun laws in the United States.”
William Lee, who is also a police officer, said on “Fox and Friends” Friday that he wouldn’t have found out about the issue had he not asked what his son learned in school.
“My biggest concern was, what was the intent of the assignment? I found out that it didn’t have anything to do with what [the students] were supposed to be learning in that social studies class,” he said.
In other words, the teacher wanted students to echo his own opinion.
Frankly, that’s disgusting. It’s much the same as all of those holding up people like David Hogg, Cameron Kasky, Emma Gonzalez, and Delany Tarr as heroes simply because they didn’t get shot at Parkland. It’s adults using kids to try and score points.
And it’s bad enough when you’re dealing with kids who are old enough to make that choice for themselves. No one is forcing Hogg, Kasky, Gonzalez or Tarr to take an anti-gun stance. They made that decision for themselves, and while I disagree with it I support their right to make that choice.
These kids didn’t get a choice. It was their assignment.
Now, it was possible that because the assignment hadn’t been approved, they couldn’t have gotten a zero for failing to do it, but it seems clear that they weren’t told any such thing.
I understand that teachers sometimes like to be flexible. Sometimes they want to pivot to incorporate current events into their lessons. However, it’s also important that in a case like this, they let the children decide for themselves. Give them both sides in an unbiased a way as possible and let them decide what to write.
Instead, all this teacher has done is hurt his own side.
How many lawmakers will look at letters from kids begging for gun control and think of this story? How many will look at them and wonder just how heartfelt those letters really are and just how much of it is about getting a grade from a teacher?
Honestly, it’s time to leave the kids out of this. Let the adults fight this one out and let them be kids, for crying out loud.