A reader from New Zealand wrote to me just now concerning the post immediately preceding this one, “Kicked Off the Schoolbus for Speaking English”:
I’m enjoying reading your blog but today’s story is making me think that you are more sensationalist then an objective observer. The story clearly said that it was an misunderstanding. Yes, family living outside the area where the school bus is operating is a problem that should be dealt with but it’s not related in any way to what you are trying to make it into. The biggest mistake you can make in this “new phase of a very old war” is to lose credibility.
You may be right. The school certainly maintains that it was all a misunderstanding.
But the mother doesn’t feel that way, and she definitely had to go to school to get her kids after the school carried them there and then refused to take them home. That’s what triggered my sense of outrage: what kind of bureaucratic monstrosity will allow the school to take the kids to school on the bus, but not return them to their home on the bus the very same day?
It’s also clear that the bus was reserved for Hmong-speaking children. Once again, that’s bizarre. It would be illegal for the school to reserve the bus for English-speaking children only.
So I stand by my outrage: there’s something smelly about this “misunderstanding”, and something peculiar about what the school is doing.
Readers, weigh in on this issue, if you will. Read my post, read the news story, and decide whether I was sensationalizing something that didn’t deserve it.
Our credibility is important to me, so make your opinion known. I’ll defer to the distributed intelligence and collective wisdom of Gates of Vienna’s readers.