Chris Maddox, a member of the Dothan City Schools board of education in Alabama, has a serious concern about what his daughter observed in school: A bunch of students aren’t standing for the Pledge of Allegiance.
Now the correct response to that reality would be, “Oh. That’s their choice. Let me focus on things that actually matter.”
But this is Alabama, where politicians think 12-year-old rape victims have to give birth against their will, so you won’t be surprised to learn that this elected official also doesn’t think highly of people making decisions he doesn’t personally agree with.
“It concerns me as a parent that we are not standing for the Pledge of Allegiance,” Maddox said. “As a board member I am telling my fellow board members I am fully planning to investigate that because it troubles me.”
What the hell is he going to investigate? There’s nothing to investigate.
Students don’t have to say the Pledge or stand for it. They don’t need permission from their parents to opt out. They can’t be forced to do it against their will. These are not hard questions! They’ve been litigated at the highest levels.
So, again, what does Maddox want the kids to do?
Maddox also said he was disappointed when he noticed a small percentage of those attending the recent Honors Day recognition for Northview reciting the Pledge and singing the National Anthem and school alma mater.
“All of these things have bothered me lately about our students not having pride in their country, in their state and in their schools specifically. I hope we can do something to change it because it’s just sad,” Maddox added.
Maybe students in Alabama would have more civic pride if their elected officials ever did anything useful…
But whether these are principled protests or just plain laziness, the school board has no right to force kids to participate in pseudo-patriotic rituals. What’s sad is that Maddox isn’t alone in his ignorance. The rot goes right to the top.
Superintendent Dr. Phyllis Edwards said she had not heard any reports of students not standing for the Pledge until Maddox’s comments at the board meeting. She said she planned to investigate the matter.
“It is certainly not something I agree with either,” Edwards said.
No wonder Alabama ranks next-to-last in education. This is the sort of nonsense their board members and administrators care about.
It should be especially embarrassing for Maddox considering his day job is working as an attorney. Not a very good one, apparently, given his misunderstanding of how laws work.
(Thanks to Brian for the link)