by Matt Gauntt
The Daily Herald is reporting that 60's radical Bill Ayers and will be speaking to students at Naperville North High School on April 8th.
"I think the issue is when we have the opportunity to bring real-life people from various periods of history, we're causing kids to think and face controversial issues and take their own position on it, and provide students with an opportunity most school districts around the country would die for." Naperville Unit District 203 Superintendent Alan Leis said.
So what kind of controversial issues could Bill Ayers talk about so impressionable students could make up their minds?
- Maybe he could talk about being a leader in a terrorist organization such as the Weathermen, where he "made decisive contributions to the Weatherman orientation towards militancy".
- Maybe he could show students how to make bombs. The kind that he used to bomb the New York City Police Headquarters, the United States Capital Building and the Pentagon. Perhaps he could make it a hands-on experience and let the students wire up their own bombs. That would be pretty exciting.
- Maybe he could talk about living on the run from authorities for years.
- Perhaps he could explain why the book that he co-authored in 1973 called "Prairie Fire" was dedicated to approximately 200 people, including Sirhan Sirhan who was convicted of assassinating Robert F. Kennedy. Perhaps he thought Sirhan Sirhan was just a really cool dude.
I have a teenager and a boy that is 12. I have to watch what I say to them as a parent. They are impressionable. If I find myself passionately talking about a particular political topic, and they are within earshot, I typically hear them parroting the same argument later. They believe what they hear from authority figures. They want to believe what they hear. It would be one thing to bring in a speaker such as Mr. Ayers to a college campus and let adults decide for themselves although college students are still very impressionable. It is completely another thing to bring a man such as Mr. Ayers in to speak to high school students. It is irresponsible to believe that these teenagers will listen to an authority figure such as Mr. Ayers and not be persuaded to believe his perspective.