You may not know that, but you may know me. My son Billy is in third grade at Cooper Elementary. I drop him off and pick him up most days, and I have attended several of the parent days and parent lunches there with you. The superintendent has given me permission, and that was all that was needed. Now that has changed. Before I can come to school for any reason again, I have to run an ad like this one, at my expense, for two weeks. There will be a hearing at the end of the two weeks, and any of you who want to keep me from going on school property are invited to come and speak against me. As I understand the legislative bill, only negative testimony will be heard. Apparantly they don't want anyone saying anything good about me. Anyway, here's the notice, and it will run every day for two weeks, and then the meeting will be held in the board room at the administration building at 7 p.m. on February 28. See ya'll there!
If you aren't laughing by now, if you realize that this is real, then I hope that you are crying. The bill calling for everything outlined above, Virginia House Bill 1366, has passed the House Courts of Justice Committee unanimously. The full House of Delegates votes on the bill Tuesday, February 3--TODAY.
We are in the midst of a whirlwind at this point in time. More and more studies are being released, showing what we have been saying for years, and more and more journalists are writing the facts and the truth, and everything they write points to the utter ridiculousness of legislation such as this. And then the crosswinds of more restrictions and harsher laws and legislation based on nothing resembling facts and truth threaten to blow us away, especially, it seems, in the South.
I cringe for every child of every registered parent in the state of Virginia. Did the proponents of this horrible legislation consider them, I wonder, even for a moment?
What most registered parents of school children will choose, of course, in order to avoid the pain and humiliation and bullying and all the other negative consequences to their children, is to not place the ads, to not ask for a hearing, and to quietly remove their presence from their children's school lives.
Someone else will take them and pick them up. No more parent days or field trips or school lunches shared. No parent or counselor conferences. No school plays or basketball games to cheer on the budding actresses or future NBA stars. They will become the invisible parents, parents not allowed to do what even the most ignorant legislator surely knows is vital for optimizing the future of America.
They will no longer be involved, for thirteen years, in what is the major part of their children's lives.