Stay Classy, Pith

Today, the Scene’s Pith in The Wind has a couple of posts (so far) about the NAACP’s opposition to the school rezoning plan passed last year.  (NOTE: The NAACP’s arguments should be read, considered and debated in full.  This is an issue where they have gerat moral authority.)  The posts at Pith are informative, which makes this pullquote all the more distressing.  Writer Jeff Woods says:

Here’s the choice for superintendent Jesse Register and the school board: Kill the plan and unite the city behind the district’s new leadership, or wage a long, protracted fight to spare white kids in Hillwood the terrible trauma of going to school with inner-city blacks.

Jackass.

How dare you.

Obviously, Mr Woods, you know nothing about the facts on the ground.  Yet, you insult the entire population of one particular area of town.  How progressive.

I’ve got to say it again, because I don’t feel better yet…

Jackass.

Here are the facts.  The inner city kids you claim to be championing ALREADY do not go to school with “white kids from Hillwood” – at least not in any great numbers.  Did you not read the great article last May in the Tennessean?

The bulk of Hillwood students come from the poorest areas in the school’s 90-square-mile attendance zone. And because Hillwood is now an island populated by students from other places, the people living in the upscale neighborhood surrounding it have no stake in the school and don’t want one.

So, in effect, Hillwood IS at the current time an inner city school, sitting in the middle of one of Nashville’s wealthiest neighborhoods.  What do the kids bussed to Hillwood gain from the current system, except for a 45-minute bus ride per day?

But I don’t really want to discuss the merits of the rezoning plan with you.  I am not 100% sold on the idea myself.  Yet, you poison the waters by preemptively insulting me and my neighbors?

I would direct you to my Emily Evans’ (no Eric Crafton, she) wonderful research on the subject.  She actually spoke to her constiuents, and listed the major reasons why the vast majority of parents in her district send their children to private and magnet schools. 

The main reasons were Influence and Control, Plant and Equipment, Teachers,Safety, the Age Divisions of public schools (K-4, 5-8 and 9-12), School size, and Academic Excellence.  Read the whole thing.  Without it, you cannot possibly have the proper context to discuss Hillwood’s situation.

I’ll let you in on a secret, Mr. Woods.  If Hillwood were all lily white, and only had an enrollment from the neighborhood, yet still had the academic and safety record it has now, I would not send my kids (who are not white, BTW) there.  If Hillwood had an enrollment of only inner-city kids, yet had the academic excellence and other programs of my kids’ current private school, I WOULD send my kids there, saving myself A LOT of money in the process.

One final thing:  why is Hillwood always the negative example, when Hillsboro is in the exact same situation?  Hillsboro, which happens to sit in a more, er, progressive part of town, always seems to get a pass in these matters. 

I am no longer going to sit back and let others define my motives.  I’m sick and tired of it.  Educate yourself, Mr. Woods, and then we might could discuss the issue properly.

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Dumb Idgit Galoot

This is so stupid

I want my Christian friends to hear me out, lest they misunderstand.

John DeBerry has introduced a bill in the state house that bans adoption by non-married couples.  I’m sure its intent was to ban gay adoptions in a way that could pass constitutional muster.  As someone who is philosophically pro-life, this angers me.  You don’t ever discourage adoptions.  Ever. 

Never mind your preconceptions about the foster care system.  Vetting for permanent adoptions is very thorough – I know, I’ve been through it twice.  People who are not fit to parent, married, unmarried, gay, straight – will be ruled out by the home-study and the other state run processes.  And this bill is discriminatory: people who aren’t married but fertile can have all the children they want. 

There is already a hodgepodge of prerequisite rules for adoption; each agency has its own set of rules and requirements.  Our adoption agency only took applications from married couples, under a certain age, who weren’t overweight.

No doubt, these requirements, at the agency level, have discouraged many from choosing adoption to build their families.  But there are many agencies with much more liberal rules.  The important thing is that these rules were enforced by the agency and not the state.  This is as it should be.  We chose an agency we were comfortable with.  A very libertarian philosophy, if you ask me.

Back on point – some people just don’t think these things through.  They get so hung up about “teh gays” or couples who shack up, they diminish the pool of potential adoptive parents.  Don’t let anyone fool you, there is NOT a waiting list for special needs children, older children, non-white children.  These kids are near impossible to place.

You know what?  I was raised by sinners.  So were you.  I do not believe in degrees of sin. 

Don’t be a dumb idgit galoot.  Encourage adoption.

Hat tip: Braisted.

My Comcastic Week

Log
 This page provides important information that can be used to resolve problems with your cable modem.
Time Priority Description
2007-11-05 20:02:21 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Failed to acquire FEC framing
2007-11-05 19:59:52 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:59:49 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:59:49 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Failed to acquire FEC framing
2007-11-05 19:41:07 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:41:06 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:41:06 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Failed to acquire FEC framing
2007-11-05 19:41:04 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Failed to acquire FEC framing
2007-11-05 19:39:49 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Failed to acquire FEC framing
2007-11-05 19:39:46 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:39:39 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:35:42 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:35:39 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:35:36 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:35:35 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Failed to acquire FEC framing
2007-11-05 19:35:31 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:35:17 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:34:47 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:34:41 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:34:40 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:34:35 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:34:33 critical No Ranging Response received -T3 time-out
2007-11-05 19:32:08 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:31:20 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync
2007-11-05 19:31:17 critical SYNC Timing Synchronization failure – Loss of Sync

That’s the last 30 minutes in the life of my cable modem.  It’s been like this for over a week.  I am speaking to you now via Verizon Wireless and their broadband card, which is slow but better than what I’m getting through my cable modem.  The so-called customer service rep at Comcast tried to give me the exact same spiel BusyMom got about my router (It might have been the same person, for all I know).  The best way to tick me off is to speak to me like I’m an idiot.  And even if I was an idiot, it’s not too hard to figure out that when the little light that says “cable” will not stay lit, you have a problem with the signal.  Comcast CS management: please update your scripts!  Maybe take out the parts about arrogant condesension while you’re at it.

When I look direcly at the modem’s URL, I’m getting crazy variations of downstream (all of them LOW), and absolutely NO upstream signal.  Yes, I’ve tried bypassing the cable splitter; it makes minimal difference.

I’m willing to accept that a)My cable modem is dying or b) maybe, just maybe, there are signal problems on the west side of town.  Or maybe all those reports we’ve been reading in the Nashville blogsphere are all coincidences.  But we can’t get to the bottom of things because the CS people are hung up on my router.

 I’ve already severed ties with one unresponsive ex-monopoly.  I’d like to work this out, but that’s not possible dealing with people who are not polite and talk down to people.

I work from home a lot, and I have Vonage.  This is going to end, Comcast,and soon.  One way or the other.  How it ends depends on your attitude when I call again tomorrow.

To Woderick, the Wobber

If you are going to steal my posts and re-post them almost word for word, a little attribution will be nice.  Don’t take advantage of this project’s pre-launch embryonic situation, that’s just rude. 

You can pilfer Shoot The Moose all you want, but the New-Place-I-Can’t-Talk-About-Yet has lawyers attached to it, so I’d lay off if I were you.  I’ve worked hours and hours till I literally  can’t see straight, and miss precious time with my family.  Do your own damned legwork, or give me attribution, please. 

Have a nice day.

Sorry, y’all.  I just had to get that off my chest.

Dear Bellsouth

I want you to understand something.  Listen to me good.  If I want your DSL service, I will call you, or sign up online.  But, if you have your telemarketers call my home, skirting the do not call registry*, using the high-pressure tactics that drove us to the do not call registry in the first place, you can be rest assured that not only am I NOT going to use your DSL service, I will most assuredly sever ties with your company altogether.  Whatever you are sending us that your people refused to leave the phone till we accepted will end up in my barbeque.

This is 2007. We do not need land line service; we were just keeping it for nostalgia’s sake.  But believe me, you have ticked off my wife to the point that I think I can at least talk her into going to Vonage.

Good job.  If I were you, I’d look for another direct marketing company.  This Novo 1 outfit is giving you a bad, bad, name.  Yes, they made the mistake of not supressing caller ID the first time they called, so I know who they are.

*The do not call registry site states that companies you currently do business with are not forbidden from calling you by the do not call rules.  This is the pitfall of telecom companies having their hand in everything. We technically do business with Bellsouth (for phone service), but I consider the other arms of the company to be totally separate.  Nevertheless, I filed a complaint anyway, so we’ll see what comes of that.

We hate, hate HATE unsolicited marketing calls.  They are a sure way to drive us away from doing business with you at all.

Your corporate office will get an earful from my wife tomorrow.  You have no idea what you’ve gotten yourself into, getting on the bad side of that woman.  You brought this on yourselves, though.

Stupid, stupid,stupid.  Who uses high-pressure telemarketing in this day and age?

My Day In One Word Or Less

Pah!

Something I’ve Learned From 20 Years Of Marriage

I’m a husband, but I’m also a flesh and blood man.  I screw up sometimes.

I learned years ago that when I screw up, when I’ve hurt the one I love, what I need to do is own up.  No excuses, no “I did this because you…”, no “I screwed up, but here’s what’s wrong with YOU…” .  It’s probably the hardest thing for a man, scratch that, for any person to learn, then execute.

Once I’ve humbly repented, if my wife wants to talk about the underlying issues, so be it.  But not before.  She is more important to me than any issue.

I will not die on that hill of Pride.

And then I learned that this philosophy works in all my interactions with all people.

Jesus’ General, my advice?  Son, it’s time to quit digging.  This is not the hill you want to die on.

But, what do I know?