Rednecks, Reichers, & Frank Simon Running Amok! Oh, My!

I attended the public meeting of the Jefferson County School Board, on November 26, where addition of protections of JCPS employees and faculty on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity was debated. Arriving late, I was unable to gain seating in the main auditorium, and found the overflow room to be an ugly and cramped place, populated as it was with ill-mannered opponents of the proposed measure, so I found myself in the lobby of the VanHoose Education Center. I’d bumped into a woman I’d attended church with in the past, and we spent some time discussing the proposed measure. The conversation turned to the fact that I was raised to not be prejudiced, that busing started in Jefferson County during my senior year of high school (1977), and that a number of people I met while managing a business near the Jefferson/Bullitt county line who had moved to northern Bullitt County to avoid busing STILL held racist views in the 1990s; I then stated that, “if you had told me in 1977 that anyone would care that a person was black, gay, or trans, 30 years henceforth, I’d have told you that you – and they – were nuts. Man would have progressed beyond that sort of blatant prejudice by then.”

Well, guess what? A woman and man seated a few feet away both perked right up, and asked me if I thought THEY were nuts, because they believed exactly as I’d stated. The man said “I pay my taxes, and if I want to hate n@#$%s and gays, I have that right.” My reply to him was that “Yes, you do have the right to be wrong, just as you have the right to believe the earth is flat, that global warming doesn’t exist, that evolution isn’t the truth, and that dinosaurs are not millions of years old. I’m just disappointed that there are people who don’t believe scientific facts.” Mr. Redneck had nothing further to say to me, other than a tepid comment about my former video store being where he rented his porno movies.

I left at that point. Stuck in the lobby, there was nothing I could do to add to the proceeding, and it was obvious that security was insufficient. If the top blew off the powder keg, violence was a possibility, and I noted several of those in attendance were packing sidearms. I must say that the hearing was disorganized, poorly conducted and managed, and that the school board obviously doesn’t know how or have the facilities to run a contentious public hearing. You’ll have to read the TransGriot’s posting from the inside of this hearing, but her impression of this hearing as being a mess and a powder keg probably jibe with mine.

Of course, we could tell from the odor, the stench of bigotry, that Frank Simon was in attendance. I had the chance to trip the old SOB, but didn’t take it. I figure he’ll die of
bilious poisoning on his own, soon enough. Of course, sexual orientation protection passed
4-3, with gender identity not making the cut. The head of the JCTA told me privately that SO and GI protection would be negotiated into the next teachers’ contract, so I expect we will have to deal with these amateurs again.

As Mahatma Gandhi once said, “I like your Christ. It is your Christians I find distasteful.”
He was so right. Jesus, please protect us from your followers!


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