Sunday Albany Democrat-Herald paper had an article by Caitlyn M. May about politicization of school boards. The assertion if I get her point, is that politics are not to be a part of our education system. While this sounds altruistic, it is fantasy. The Oregon Education Association is one of the top 5 largest financial contributors to Democrat Governor Kate Brown.
Caitlyn goes on but most surprisingly adds a statement from Kelsy Kretchmer assistant professor at OSU who brings up “Brown v. the Board of Education” and states “school boards filled with white, conservative, pro-segregation members” as if contemporaneous. Let’s reflect on this history Professor Kelsy is flashing us back to; it was in fact the Republican Party (i.e. the party of Lincoln) that most often led the fight to combat racism in America, while Democrats dragged their feet. The U.S. Supreme Court’s unanimous, landmark ruling in the case of Brown v. Board of Education. Consider the words of Chief Justice Earl Warren, a Republican appointed by a Republican president:
“Segregation of white and colored children in public schools has a detrimental effect upon the colored children. The impact is greater when it has the sanction of the law, for the policy of separating the races is usually interpreted as denoting the inferiority of the Negro group…Any language in contrary to this finding is rejected. We conclude that in the field of public education the doctrine of ‘separate but equal’ has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal.”
In contrast, our current president Joe Biden once said “Unless we do something about this, my children are going to grow up in a jungle, the jungle being a racial jungle with tensions having built so high that it is going to explode at some point. We have got to make some move on this.", when speaking during a congressional hearing related to anti-busing legislation. Even now Vice President Kamala Harris called out Biden on his opposition of busing during the presidential primary. This had no affect on her political aspirations in the end.
Try to pretend if you wish that education and politics must be separate, but by definition, politics are the activities associated with the governance. When tax funded public education remains a function of government it will remain politicized.
Democrat-Herald Article the inspired this post:Politicizing kids: Politics, social media combine to roil school board races