depress Ctrl and + keys at same time to increase zoom (font size), depress Ctrl and – keys at same time to reduce zoom
From a 2009 Key West mayor candidate:
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2013 17:24:04 +0100 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Thank you, Catherine Vogel
Oye, Admittedly, I am a soft-touch. Particularly with kids and seniors.
Case in point: Yesterday when I learned that the three H.O.B. students facing criminal charges for bringing an airgun to school were not detained but instead assigned to a juvenile program, I wept with relief.
I actually cried. These are good kids with good parents and who have good grades but who used exceptionally bad judgement. This was a mistake. It was not a crime.
The student who reported them should be commended for doing so. But who I really want to give thanks to is the office of state attorney Catherine Vogel. State Attorney Vogel, (and Judge David Auldin) thank you for your excellent judgement in this case. These kids are treasures to me. When I got the news it was not joy that made me cry—yes, as I am as I write this—it was the relief for the student’s parents and family and friends and teachers who have invested so much in their success over the years.
Imagine working on three individual beloved projects for 10 years only to have that work laid to waste by a human mistake. We were all kids once. It is only by the good grace of wise adults I made it to who I am today, mistakes not withstanding (and of which I made far more than my fair share).
Today is a day for celebration! Three native Key West sons* we almost lost have been returned to us. Let’s all do our part to make sure they and all our daughters and sons keep to the path. Let us all do our part to be there before they fall out. Keep an eye out for our kids everywhere and all they time. For instance, never be hesitant or reluctant to check-in and say, “How’s it going?” or “What’s up?” or “Are you ok?” or “Need a hand?” And be the example for all kids to follow. They are more than dear to us, they are us.
Again, thank you Catherine Vogel. For being there for these three children, I owe you one.
PS here’s the clipping from the front page of today’s Citizen. *The one associated student’s family has filed a motion for dismissal.
I, Sloan, included the entire article:
Boys, 13, sent to juvenile program
Airsoft gun offense won’t be on record
BY ADAM LINHARDT Citizen Staff email@example.com
Two boys charged with bringing an airsoft gun to Horace O’Bryant Middle School last month agreed Tuesday to enter a juvenile program that could spare them criminal records.
The 13-year-olds agreed to enter the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office Intensive Delinquency Diversion Service (IDDS) as part of an agreement with prosecutors, said Assistant State Attorney Assistant State Attorney Kader Scull.
Chief Circuit Judge David Audlin told them if they did well in the program they could avoid having a felony conviction on their permanent record.
The terms of their agreement as part of IDDS were not released.
“I don’t feel comfortable going into that because these are juveniles, but generally speaking there is counseling, community service and things along those lines,” said State Attorney Catherine Vogel. “This is a just resolution. The intent is that they learn a lesson, but they also have the opportunity to keep their records clean. We don’t want them to not be able to join the military or get into a good college and this resolution accomplishes that.”
IDDS can require an offender to do a lot of different things, as the program — funded by the Department of Juvenile Justice and administrated by the Sheriff’s Office — is tailored to each case, said Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Becky Herrin.
“It really depends on the child and the offense, but typically it means counseling that includes monitoring the kid’s grades, meeting with the family and drug testing is sometimes a part of it. Restitution is sometimes part of it. Community service is sometimes part of it. There is a wide range of things and it is very intensive in terms of being tailored to each individual child and case.”
A third co-defendant, 12, filed a motion to dismiss via attorney Sam Kaufman. That hearing was scheduled before Audlin on April 16.
“These airsoft pistols don’t meet the definition of a weapon in the state statute,” Kaufman said outside court. “They’re non-lethal. To me, this a school disciplinary issue and not a legal issue.”
The Feb. 20 incident took place soon after classes had started for the day, and resulted in a lockdown of the Leon Street school for several hours.
Police responded to the scene and the boys were identified, detained and processed.
No one was harmed, but a broken intercom system led to some confusion. Teachers were informed about the lockdown by email, and the police were actually called by the parents of a student, who had called home to say she was safe.
A full debriefing was later conducted with Schools Superintendent Mark Porter, officials with the Key West Police Department and the School District, and HOB Principal Mike Henriquez.
On Thursday, Henriquez revealed that the three boys had already served “multiple-day suspensions” from school.
I replied to Mike Mongo:
To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject:
RE: Thank you, Catherine Vogel
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2013 12:48:24 -0400
Too bad the school district and Vogel and the city community didn’t jump as quick and decisively on what happened at Key West High School leading up to Matthew Gilleran going home from school one Friday afternoon and posting a farewell for good to his Facebook friends and shooting himself in the head.
Subtext: Matthew Gilleran was teased hard because he was gay. Mike Mongo is bisexual. The boys who brought the not entirely fake guns to school were straight.
Hold those thoughts.
While eating a bowl of soup and rice at Good Food Conspiracy yesterday, I heard one of the gals behind the counter strike up a conversation with a woman she knew about where her children were attending school. The customer said Big Pine Academy and Marathon High. She said she’d had to move both of her children out of Sugarloaf School, which is an elementary and middle school located on Sugarloaf Key, about ten miles down US 1 from Big Pine Key.
My curiosity pricked, I told the customer I had run for school board last year and remained interested in the school system. Could I ask her a few questions? Sure. Here’s what came out our ensuing conversation.
A few years back, her youngest daughter was in a class with a problem student, a boy, who had been moved from one class to another, and now had no more classes to be moved to without going back to a class where he had already been. He was being worked with by teachers and staff, but he was a bully and he picked on, including shoving, this woman’s youngest daughter, when teachers were not looking. Her daughter was coming home I tears, and she went to speak with the principal about it. That was Teresa Axford.
When Axford refused to remove the boy from the class, the mother told Axford, if her daughter came to school the next day, which was Friday, and that boy was still in her class, then she would pull her daughter out of that school and she would not be in school on Monday. Her daughter went to school the next day, and the boy was still in her class, and the mother put her daughter in Big Pine Academy the following Monday. Her daughter not only got away from the bully and Teresa Axford, but her grades improved. I said Teresa Axford is blind to anything bad about the schools.
The mother said she later pulled her older daughter out of Sugarloaf School because her grades were poor, and she put her in Big Pine Academy where she made almost all As, and now she attends Marathon High and is doing about the same there. The mother said she had attended Marathon High, and many of her teachers were still there. The woman behind the counter said she and her husband had thought about moving from Summerland Key to Big Pine, so their children could go to Marathon High instead of Key West High, which has so many more students. Teresa Axford left Sugarloaf School to be the principal at Key West High. I said Key West High is a blackboard jungle in the true sense.
Teresa Axfored later was promoted, and now is in charge of the school district’s curriculum. She was replaced at Key West High by Amber Bosco, who also is blind to anything bad in that school. She admitted on US 1 Radio that Matthew Gilleran had been teased, but it did not rise to the level of bullying. Teasing is the first definition of bullying in the school district’s anti-bullying policy.
Hold those thoughts.
On another blackboard jungle front:
Post-Acevedo scandal, Adult Ed rebounding
By SEAN KINNEY
Posted – Wednesday, March 20, 2013 10:31 AM EDT
Four years after Monique Acevedo’s six-figure theft from the Monroe County School District’s Adult Education Department, the program she ran has stabilized under a new director and could potentially expand.
Acevedo, whose husband Randy was then the superintendent, was arrested in April 2009 and subsequently convicted of stealing $201,424 in student tuition payments from Adult Ed. She was sentenced to eight years in prison while Randy, whom then-Gov. Charlie Crist removed from office, was convicted of official misconduct and received probation.
The program drifted under the two short-time superintendents that succeeded Acevedo and Adult Ed itself went through two changes in directors in less than three years.
Since last summer, Melanie Stefanowicz has taken charge as adult and alternative education director and Superintendent Mark Porter said she “is doing an outstanding job.”
As Porter gathers community input for a long-term strategic plan for the district, he has mentioned several times the need to expand “career and technical education,” which falls under the auspices Adult Ed.
“Career/technical education is a goal of the strategic plan,” Porter said. “I think we will see an increased emphasis on that.”
He said one challenge was aligning all three Keys public high schools on a seven-period schedule. Key West High School and Marathon High School have six-period day schedules, which Porter said “is not opening up opportunity sufficiently enough.”
In response to a comment at a recent public meeting complaining that Monroe graduates aren’t properly trained in basic work skills like counting change, Porter said he wants “the quality of our graduates to be reflected in the quality of the workforce.”
Stefanowicz said there are 270 students enrolled in adult education programs, including 27 co-enrolled high school students taking classes at one of six locations in the county.
Offerings include General Education Development test prep; adult high school for students beyond high school age who prefer a traditional diploma to a GED; English as a Second Language classes; civics courses; and cosmetology classes including nail and facial specialties.
For instance, aspiring nail technicians can take a semester-long class meeting three times a week for $722 tuition, plus the purchase of tools and a textbook.
During a March 12 School Board discussion, board member Ed Davidson said it’s important give students options to learn marketable skills.
“We’ve been telling students for generations you can be whatever you want to be,” he said. “But if you want a cool car and hot girlfriend,” you need a money-making skill “as opposed to some esoteric interest that has you living at home with your parents.”
All told, Monique Acevedo pleaded guilty to six felony charges of grand theft and scheme to defraud totaling more than $400,000.
While I’m glad to see Stefanowicz seems to be tightening up that program, on a scale of 1 to 100, 1 being the lowest grade, that program and the rest of the school district curriculum getting kids able to drive a cool car, and have a hot boyfriend, or a hot girlfriend, by graduation from high school is about zero for all but beauty technicians, bullies and denial freaks.
As for the school district seeking community input, a non sequitur in my experience, Larry Murray sent this to me after schools superintendent Mark Porter, pestered by Larry and me, agreed to a seventh community meeting on the 5-year strategic plan, at Sugarloaf School to make it convenient for lower Keys people to attend one of those meetings.
STRATEGIC PLAN MEETING SIGHTS
I do not think a lot of planning went into the District’s scheduling of these meetings. For example, the announcements, Porter’s op-ed piece, that appeared today in both the Citizen and the Keynoter should have been issued two weeks ago. The School District can’t seem to do even the simplest things. If you would like a crowd, you need to give people reasonable advance notice. Hell, two sessions have already been held.
If the SD can’t seem to do even the simplest things, do you then agree that a state takeover of the SD is in order?
Moving to a bigger “adult education” pond …
Sancho Panza forwarded this under the subject: Iraq + 10. Time for Truth and Reconciliation.
This is an anniversary not to be celebrated, but observed: Ten years ago, the war against Iraq began. It was based on lies. Demonstrable, easily disproven lies. Lies that were so easy to see that back in October of 2002, when the cause for war was being delivered to Capitol Hill, as a junior Congressman I was able to categorically ascertain that there was no cause for war, and distributed an analysis of the
War Resolution to hundreds of members of the House. I then spoke to Congress for an hour detailing the false call for war. America needs to move forward, but we can only do so with the truth as our guiding light, and reconciliation as our healing path.
That is why I have called for a process of Truth and Reconciliation, where those who were responsible for taking us to war are brought forth in an officially sanctioned setting, and, under oath, testify to what they knew. The American people must know the truth about the grave decision made by our government to go to war. The families of US servicemen and women who made the ultimate sacrifice, deserve to know the truth. The families of dead Iraqi civilians, who died as a result of the war, deserve to know the truth. Ten years after the war, Iraq is still in turmoil. Ten years after the war, the United States’ financial security is threatened by the cost of the war and our long-term physical security has been damaged by the war. How can we recover? How can the people of Iraq recover? How can the world recover? We must demand the truth. We must know the truth. Truth and Reconciliation is the process. It has worked in other countries struggling with their past. It can work in America. Please let me know what you think.
Contribute to Kucinich Action to help support candidates who will stand for the truth, and to help us broaden our reach for an America which tells the truth, an America which focuses on our needs at home, an America which never mistakes offense for defense.
Please read the recent speech I gave to the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation in Santa Barbara, for a broader discussion of these themes. The speech is republished today in Truthout.
Here is an excerpt:
We must demand that America, our nation, establish a fully empowered Commission of Truth and Reconciliation, so that those responsible for misleading us into annihilating innocent people in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and elsewhere be brought forward to a public accountability in a formal process of fact-finding, of inquiry, of public testimony, of admission, of confession. There is no other way out of the moral cul-de-sac in which reside the monstrous crimes of mass murder, torture, kidnapping and rendition other than atonement: AT ONE MENT. It is in atonement that we will achieve what Blake called the unity of opposites. It is in reconciliation that the Blakean idea of the contrary nature of God, containing multitudes of humanity, will cause us to understand the fragility of our social compact and the possibility that any of us could be murderer and victim. Without public expiation for the unbridled use of force, the wanton violence we have writ large in the world will replicate, perpetuate and be our own ruin. This is the importance of a formal process of Truth and Reconciliation. We had and have a right to defend ourselves as a nation, but when we go on the offense, the violence that we have visited abroad will inevitably blow back home. The violence we create in the world in turn licenses and desensitizes us to the wanton violence which is exercised in our streets, and unfortunately in our homes. We must understand the causal links. What is outermost presses down upon what is innermost. What is innermost becomes outermost.
Please help continue our own work of truth-telling. Contribute to Kucinich Action today.
Is he gearing up to run for office again? Is that what this is about? I can’t imagine Congress going along with it, though; too many of them went along with it, but darn, if the news ain’t juicy lately about how awful it is in Iraq these days? And, now they are talking tonight about putting feet on the ground in Syria, if it s proven its despot used chemical weapons. Why not let Israel deal with that, it’s in their immediate neighborhood? Or the UN. I think they should be prosecuted for murder, treason and war crimes.
Then, I sent Sancho this forward, which was forwarded to me by my M.I.T. doctor scientist spy-terrorist novel thriller author duplicate bridge partner, who is about as enamoured with Washington D.C. as Sancho and I are, except from the opposite end of the spectrum:
TEL AVIV, Israel – The Israelis are developing an airport security device that eliminates the privacy concerns that come with full-body scanners. It’s an armored booth you step into that will not X-ray you, but will detonate any explosive device you may have on your person.
Israel sees this as a win-win situation for everyone, with none of this crap about racial profiling. It will also eliminate the costs of long and expensive trials.
You’re in the airport terminal and you hear a muffled explosion. Shortly thereafter, an announcement: Attention to all standby passengers, El Al is proud to announce a seat available on flight 670 to London. Shalom!
As a retired Lucent Technologies scientist, Sancho replied to the Israeli suicide bomber sniffer outer forward:
OK as a joke, but any “technology” capable of detonating a hidden explosive device would require a specific activation trigger for said device… which means that you should be able to get an initial feed back of its presence w/o full detonation. A live, would be terrorist, is worth a lot more than one who’s blown to bits! Besides, if such technology existed the US Army would be deploying them everywhere in Iraq and Afghanistan where hidden road bombs are endemic!
I replied to Sancho:
For all I know, it was a joke. The whole world seems headed toward being a joke, on the dominant species, which might be headed for non-dominance, thereby correcting its misperception of being the dominant species.
Then, Sancho replied to my Kucinich inquiry:
Dennis Kucinich is a rare breed… not quite the same chicken shit politicos we all know and loath in Washington. I would love to have him in the Oval Office instead of the Israel-ass-kissing-double-crossing-flin-flan man grovelling over there, as we speak! But you have a better chance of becoming KW Mayor…… so, like you, he’s just nibbling at the big cheese from outside, not important/dangerous enough for the big steel trap to fall on either one of you and spill your guts out!
So, the rare breed is gearing up to run for office again?
Dang, there you go and stick a pin in my balloon about becoming KW Mayor.
Maybe youse and meese should start a nationally syndicated livestream talk show, and field calls from the listening audience, as a run up to youse and meese running for the Offal Orofice on the Sancho Panza / Don Quixote Party ticket. About how long do you figure that would take for the big steel trap to fall on us and spill our guts out?!
Then came this reverse sex discrimination provocation from the owner and director of the KeyCard duplicate bridge club in Marathon, where my right-wing M.I.T. buddy and I play that ancient wonderful infuriating game. Maybe this gal would make an great Secretary of State for Sancho, after he is sworn in as El Presidente, the first POTUS fluent in English and Spanish, and in French, Italian, Latin, and, I imagine, more than that, including being born in the Dominican Republic.
SIMPLE TRUTH 1
Lovers help each other undress before sex. However after sex they always dress on their own. Moral of the story: In life, no one helps you once you’re screwed.
SIMPLE TRUTH 2 When a lady is pregnant, all her friends touch the stomach and say, “Congrats”. But, none of them come and touch the man’s penis and say, “Good job”. Moral of the story: “Hard work is never appreciated.”
FIVE RULES TO REMEMBER IN LIFE 1. Money cannot buy happiness, but it’s more comfortable to cry in a Corvette than on a bicycle. 2. Forgive your enemy, but remember the asshole’s name. 3. If you help someone when they’re in trouble, they will remember you when they’re in trouble again. 4. Many people are alive only because it’s illegal to shoot them. 5. Alcohol does not solve any problems, but then neither does milk.
Bonus: Condoms don’t guarantee safe sex. A friend of mine was wearing one when he was shot by the woman’s husband.
Then, my cousin Leo Bashinsky had to go and throw a damper.
Well, when you are asked to pray for a Divine Intervention of the feminine into USA, and you do it, there is no telling what might come.
There is a theoretical Key West mayor campaign platform and related ponderables post today at goodmorningkeywest.com.