I respect freedom of press and the obligation of the media to responsibly report events. However, choosing to place the article “South End school board candidates talk priorities” on the front page of the News Times/Record was not responsible journalism.
The meeting hosted by Rufus and Reece Rose masqueraded as a candidate forum, but only invited the three opposition school board candidates while failing to invite or even contact their incumbent opponents. The Old Goats “organization” the Roses claim to represent is not exactly a recognized community entity. Providing front page coverage of this one sided “discussion” is the equivalent of giving front page coverage to either a Democrat or Republican Island County Central Committee meeting with their own candidates.
That said, I do credit the Record for acting responsibly by engaging in follow up interviews which discredited the false or misleading claims made by the two candidates at the Rose “forum.” The Record also noted that the Rose gathering included people who have recently disrupted school board meetings by refusing to wear masks, criticizing LGBTQ and Black Lives Matter banners and opposing curriculum that celebrates our nation’s multi-racial, multi-cultural, multi-ethnic history.
Yes, there was human bondage and it was inhumane, horrific and we are still plagued with the consequences. Yes, there still exists white privilege and racism. And it must be exposed and challenged.
Unlike the Rose “forum” attendees, the incumbent Whidbey School Board candidates, Andrea Downs, Marnie Jackson and Ann Johnson, are concerned about the health of students. They will trust and follow guidance based on science. Downs, Jackson and Johnson believe that the culture and history of all students should be respected. Downs, Jackson and Johnson understand that history includes both the good and bad. You don’t just teach the good or a myth. Vote for the continuation of responsible school leadership.
Vote for Andrea Downs, Marnie Jackson and Ann Johnson. “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” (Martin Luther King)