The McKinney pool party video is a national news story.
It is something that is shared frequently on Facebook and almost everyone has some opinion on.
If you don’t happen to have an opinion on it, you might even feel socially compelled to comment nonetheless.
It is a bit of a thorny issue with racial and class tensions and P.C. mines strewn across it. A perfect time for an “End of Discussion.”
In the comment section after a story about the incident was posted on the The Miami Herald website, Alberto Iber posted,
“He did nothing wrong. He was afraid for his life. I commend him for his actions.”
I disagree with Alberto Iber about this incident.* But this comment is not only not a fireable offense, but utterly unobjectionable when it comes to social mores and whatever the -ism of the day is. He’s losing his job for a political thought crime. He holds the wrong opinion about this video. He didn’t communicate it with hate or stereotypes or vulgarity. The sin is one of “perceived insensitivity.” The school district actually says so.
The post showed Iber’s Facebook picture, his name, the school and his title. Several school board members said they did not like the comment.
On Wednesday, Miami-Dade Public Schools announced Iber’s removal and that they were looking for his replacement. The statement said that school employees are held to a higher standard and are required to conduct themselves, both personally and professionally, in a manner that represents the school district’s core values.
“Judgment is the currency of honesty,” said Superintendent of Schools Alberto M. Carvalho. “Insensitivity – intentional or perceived – is both unacceptable and inconsistent with our policies, but more importantly with our expectation of common sense behavior that elevates the dignity and humanity of all, beginning with children.”
Isn’t it nice how “perceived insensitivity” puts your employment fate in the hands of whomever feels like objecting to you at any moment? That’s one of the tricks of the Left’s “End of Discussion” tactics—the actual words often don’t matter. It’s how even just one person feels about the words. A recipe for free-wheeling speech, that. Creepily, the article cites no one who has any whisper of doubt about whether Iber should have lost his job. He offended people. End of discussion.
“The superintendent and the school system did the right thing. They have always stood up for children, and this principle obviously had a misguided view,” Kramer said.
He had a misguided view, said one parent. I wonder what views Kramer might have that pick-a-person-any-person might find “misguided” and therefore demand her livelihood for the offense of merely offending them?
Another write-up of the story, which seems to creepily concede that this is a perfectly reasonable action, says the principal was “reassigned” instead of fired.
Iber reportedly said he meant to post his comment on the Miami Herald’s website anonymously. The comment was later deleted, but not before screenshots were saved and passed around social media.
Well, then. It’s nice to know you can be an American with an opinion and a job as long as you don’t ever identify yourself while giving your opinion.
*I’ve listened to accounts from lots of people about the party, watched both sympathetic and critical news coverage, looked at the gathered facts about the party. I also think a police officer should be able to handle a clearly unarmed sophomore in a bikini without this amount of force. And, if indeed, he felt threatened by the rest of the crowd, smashing a young woman’s face into the ground while she’s not threatening him probably isn’t the way to de-escalate the situation. The officer has now resigned. I don’t allege that his actions were racist or that that was the motivation of the police or neighborhood in wanting the party broken up. To say the least, this could have been handled better. Certainly, commendation is not in order.
And, for all those who will tell me police have dangerous jobs and these teenagers must act with unfailingly pristine behavior at a pool party to avoid being thrown to the ground by an agent of the state with a gun, I’d ask that you apply anything nearing a similar standard to the conduct of said agent of the state. Our society actually expects far more of the police officer in this situation than average citizens, who are indeed supposed to be allowed a wide berth of possibly objectionable behavior before being manhandled or threatened by the state. Groups of teenagers are not often utterly compliant to authority figures at every moment of their lives, but a lack of such manners from teenagers in swim trunks does not justify every officer’s actions. No, I’m not a cop. Yes, I understand their jobs can be dangerous. But if every American must be a cop in order to have standing to ask for limits on their use of force, there will be no limits.
I am, of course, happy to stand up for the speech of those who disagree with me, as Iber does. This is insane.