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Consider The Following...

By Lafe Tolliver, Esq
Guest Column

    Note One:  Well the primary election is over and there are no surprises. The in group stays, for the most part, in ... and any outsiders will have a Herculean task to upset the apple cart, which needs to be upset for the good of the city.

    So, there was a low voter turn out...eh? What else is new in Toledo politics? It is not like it is exciting to watch the slow drum roll of the politicos go through their standard lines of how they are going to make your life so fantastic and better, but only if you vote for them.

Lafe Tolliver, Esq

     From the way some of them yammer away, it is like if you vote for them, you will be immediately transported to Fantasy Island where all of our dreams will come true:

clean streets ... safe streets, more jobs ... clean water ... great parks ... fantastic public schools (more about that later on) ... a thriving downtown ... lower taxes ... highly competent city governance ... (ha..ha..on that one!) ... Age of Aquarius! .... well, you get the drift.

    Sorry to say, but the above "stuff" won't happen under any administration without a bigger tax base and more innovative and aggressive city hall leadership ("in Toledo...you say!").

    As you can see, most if not all of the leadership and new ideas of development are not coming from the moribund city hall or mayor's office, but rather from the private sector.

     Why? They saw the handwriting on the wall and decided to step up and step out and let the city fathers (and mothers) play catch up.

    What drives innovation and creativity? Ideas! .... ideas! ... ideas and the guts to put them into action and not the utterance of mealy-mouthed public service statements about what needs to be done but what will be done.

     Sadly, the presently constituted group of city politicos are abysmally clueless as to

grabbing the bull by the horns and going for a ride. They play it safe and put in the requisite number of lame chicken dinner speeches to the Rotary Club and VFW Posts and call it a successful day.

     They follow an old, outdated political playbook that says that you do not rock the boat or offend anyone and you do not make waves that will upset the status quo, or, if you do, you better have a day job as your default position.

     Question? Have any of the current crop of politicos asked the mayor about the offering of the 11 low-hanging fruit ideas for growth and development that were offered for her consideration some months ago and, if so, what happened to those ideas?

     So, when the general election rolls around, expect the same ol' same ol' and you will not be disappointed! No surprises there.

     Note Two:  Well, well. It appears that the Ohio Department of Education has come to Toledo, peeked inside the school system and what they saw caused them to

give Toledo Public Schools a good caning...almost to the point of child abuse.

     TPS got another, "F"! ( I say, "another" since it is in a long line of distinguished F grades over past years).  By the way, the "F" grade does not stand for fine or fabulous.

It means, TPS is not meeting the bench mark in educational standards of excellence.

     Did you see the full page Toledo Blade ad that the board put out the day before the report card grades came out? They knew that they were in for a whipping and wanted to minimize the damage by putting their spin on their accomplishments.

     I know, I know ... Toledo, being an urban school district, has a host of problems with its students: homelessness, hunger, poverty, one parent households and downright apathy including the perennial problem of young teachers cutting their educational teeth on inner city school kids (as if they were being experimented upon).

     But, did you also notice that the overwhelming number of past superintendents have been in-house or in-grown products? Where is the needed mix of bringing in superintendents and staff from outside of Toledo or Ohio?

     Why the need to always circle the wagons and have John Doe or Jane Doe always take the head honcho position instead of a Darren Greaves from Austin or a Karen Mysong from Seattle coming in and tossing out the dead weight and equally dead teaching materials or slacker teachers?

     Someone said, and I do not know who said it but, "There are no un-teachable kids, there are teachers who just can't teach!" There! Is that throwing down the gauntlet?

Sure, Romules Durant is seemingly a great cheer leader for TPS. His zeal is catchy and inspiring. He is a dynamo in trying to single handedly carry TPS on his back.

     But, there comes a time when it might be time for Mr. Durant to say adios to TPS and farm out his considerable skills to other school districts around the country.

I know, I know...I will catch the devil for these comments but so what. Catch me if you can!

     Note Three: Well, it seems that President Trump is impervious to any instruction regarding his woefully appalling lack of American history in regards to civil rights and

white supremacy in America.

     When he met with Senator Tim Scott, the only black senator in Congress, for a grand total of 40 minutes, Senator Scott, to his credit, was trying to pour water on

a rock and hoping against hope that the rock would absorb it. Fat chance!

     A obtuse person like Trump, who hails from NYC and is old enough to know, or should know, the basic rudiments of the civil rights struggle and the history of the KKK,

acts as if all of this is news to him.

     Granted, 40 minutes to educate an old white man who is set in his ways about the pernicious effect of him constantly making any statement that gives aid and comfort to white nationalists or the KKK or white supremacists is a gargantuan task at best.

    One would think that being from NYC, Trump, by mere accident of association or osmosis, would have had a better understanding of these United States including Jim Crow, slavery, de jure segregation and police misconduct.

     But, alas, he appears to have intentionally missed those junior high and high school history classes wherein he could have been told the real deal about the reasons for the Civil War and the effects of post Civil War slavery and racism, both seen and unseen.

     Trump is intractable about his views on race and racism in America. We have seen that many times in his buffoonish statements about Charlottesville and the Central Park Five and birtherism and the Wall and a host of other mind-numbing dumb statements that he puts forth as being true.

     So, kudos to Senator Scott for his effort to try to re-orient this President.  What Trump needed was to be locked in at Camp David (without his Twitter account) for 72 hours with Andrew Young, Michelle Alexander, Tim Wise, John L. Lewis, Cornel West and Roland Martin.

    Now, that would have been an education!

Contact Lafe Tolliver at tolliver@Juno.com    


Copyright © 2017 by [The Sojourner's Truth]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 08/16/18 14:12:35 -0700.

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