Saturday, June 04, 2005

Graduation blues 
Here's more evidence that among all professions, the field of education has had unique success in attracting into its ranks a managerial class of hidebound, miseducated, myopic, bureaucratic chuckleheads.
Every year across the country the cap and gown remain the dress of the day for millions of graduating students.

This year, however, the traditional dress of the graduate has become the center of a controversy at Petaluma High School.

Jim and Kim Kiernan decided to challenge the custom in the name of their son Steven, who just finished Marine boot camp. They'd like to see him graduate from Petaluma High School on June 11 in his military uniform.

But school principal Mike Simpson says it's against school policy. Simpson is bent on preserving what he calls a "traditional focus." Steven Kiernan can wear his military uniform, said Simpson, but along with the other 300 members of the graduating class of 2005, he must wear it under "the uniform of the day," the cap and gown.

First of all, it's not Simpson's graduation. It's Steven Kiernan's. Second, if the focus is on "tradition," then the United States Marine Corps is richly steeped in traditions the school district knows not of.

I mean, I hate to have to explain this to a grown man, here.

Third, I can almost guarantee that there is no specific policy banning military uniforms from graduation - only that students should wear the cap and gown. There is no reason why the uniforms of our nation's military services should not merit an exception to that policy - other than the intransigence and ignorance of school officials.

Believe me: 20 years hence, that marine's graduation from boot camp is going to mean far more to him than his high school graduation. Especially when school officials are pissing all over this young man's accomplishment, which truly does set him apart from his peers.

Steven's enlistment represents a commitment to public service and an accomplishment unusual among 17 and 18 year olds. If these school officials had any knowledge, they would be taking pride in this young man, and encouraging such behavior in future graduates by encouraging him to attend graduation in his uniform.

Further, it is traditional on universities for ROTC graduates to attend graduation ceremonies in their uniforms, with commissioning ceremonies to occur immediately afterwards. There is a long tradition of military uniforms in academic settings.

Of course, I no longer expect the undereducated victims of teachers colleges to have any idea what goes on either in the military or in more rigorous academic institutions, anyway.

Steven should wear his uniform under his cap and gown. Then while the graduates line up and it's too late to stop them, he should ditch his cap and gown. He's obviously outgrown it anyway. He's no longer a high school kid. He's a marine.

Splash, out


Veteran's Day is November 11th and I hope that EVERY American will be flying the flag in honor of our troops fighting in Iraq and around the world to preserve our freedoms!

I can even tell you where to get one for free! Visit AmericanFlags.com right now and they'll send you a FREE American Flag. These flags were $19.99, but now they are FREE. You pay just for shipping/handling and they'll ship one to your door. (Actually - I've ordered more than 20 from them to give to my neighbors, as gifts, etc!)

Get your free flag now: **FREE AMERICAN FLAG**

Semper Fi!

Bill Adams
Hey, excellent website. A great Iraq resource is Deaths in Iraq. It breaks all of the casualties down by age, race, branch of the military, country, etc.
I saw your site when browsing a friends page on www.SchoolBuddies.com. Did you trade links with them? Oh well back to browsing. TTYL Dave.
Came to your site to get some ideas for mine, Vietnam in Pictures. Nice job!
I posted some pictures with a few captions that were taken in 1968 in and around the Da Nang area. Drop by if you get a chance. ---Jack--- vietnam war information
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