Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

30 July 2009

High School Trash

A local Silver Spring High School, John F. Kennedy High School, very recently brought an 80-year-old woman to court because she left a bag of trash in the high school lobby. Well, actually she did it twice and they took her to court the second time because she left a note on the bag with her name. The trash was left by high school students throughout her neighborhood when they walked through on their way back from local fast food restaurants where they bought their lunches or on their way back to school for after-school activities. Adlyn Cook had asked the school to address the problem a number of times prior to leaving a bag of trash in the school lobby the first time and the school had ignored her.

Montgomery County schools are very much creatures of the progressive left. They have a strong environmental bias, including such nonsense as a belief in man-made global warming. But, they apparently do not mind if their students trash nearby neighborhoods. If the school principal were a responsible person and if he actually believed in what they teach, then he should have issued a rebuke to his students and called our heroine, Adlyn Cook, and thanked her for taking the time to pick up the garbage. Basically, he should have shamed the students for making an 80-year-old woman pick up their garbage. Then, he should see to it that the students are allowed to leave the school for lunch only if they do not leave their garbage behind and he should have provided adequate trash cans for the garbage they would carry back to school with them. He might organize an after-school service group to check the neighborhood and pick up after the, hopefully, few bad eggs. But, no, in a fit of government official arrogance, the school filed criminal charges of unlawful dumping of garbage against Adlyn Cook. She was issued an order to show up in court, which was delivered to her home by three officers.

In the end, the criminal charge was set aside and Adlyn Cook had to perform service work in the high school cafeteria as a result of a mediation procedure. The school principal has now agreed to meet with her in September and discuss the trash issue. I wish her good luck. I know from personal experience that high school principals in Montgomery County do not care much of a fig for the students or parents of students, let alone their neighbors.

There is even more to the story. After the principal, one Thomas Anderson, had her name from the trash bag, he had a "no trespassing" order issued against Cook. This prevented her from serving as an election judge during a special election. She has been an election judge for 20 years. Also, the results of the mediation of 29 June were not passed on to the court by a scheduled court date of 14 July. Cook, thinking the matter was over, went on a vacation trip and when she came back, she found that there was an arrest warrant on her for failure to show up in court. She turned herself in the police and they checked up on her story and withdrew the warrant.

Anderson says she handled it wrongly, but admits that sometimes things have to be done in an extreme way to get attention. He says the school also wants there to be no trash in the neighborhood. Too bad that was not his focus when Adlyn Cook called the school numerous times before leaving the trash in the school lobby. Too bad he was not thinking about that when he had no trespassing orders and complaints of criminal trash dumping issued.

This account is based on the story in the Burtonsville Gazette of 29 July 2009 written by C. Benjamin Ford.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Way to go Ms. Cook! It's about time someone stood up and did something about these kids and teens who feel the world owes them something and who have little respect for other people or the world around them. You did the right thing and I am proud of you!

Alexandria, VA