Monday, November 18, 2013

Legislative Forum: Part I

I haven't written in a while, but am compelled to now after I attended a forum this evening at Southeast of Saline USD 306 in Gypsum, KS.

There were many things said on which I mean to comment, but I have to start with a relatively short piece for two reasons:  the sheer arrogance of the comment, and the fact that I'm extremely tired.

During the course of the question and answer session, one of the school board members was questioning the opinions of Rep. Tom Arpke, R. 24th District on the Common Core State Standards movement.  Mr. Arpke stated that he believes it is a waste of time and money for the Judicial branch to force a special session on school funding if they rule that the schools are being underfunded.

Oh, really?

So, Mr. Arpke, tell me why we are in this situation, again?  Oh, that's right.  I remember now.  The legislative branch willfully broke a law written into the state constitution.  Then, through the checks and balances set up by our government, the Judicial branch ordered the Legislative branch to follow the law.  Again, they chose instead to break it.  That's not all.  Then, they created a situation in which they would have no choice but to break it in the future.

That's right.  The representatives in the legislature chose to break a law, were ordered to follow it, broke it again, and then chose not to fix the problem but to create circumstances that guarantee that it continue.

Tell me, Mr. Arpke, am I going to be allowed to disobey the tax laws you voted for that I don't agree with?  After all, I'm just a lowly citizen.  You are an elected official.  I would estimate that your obligation to follow the laws is at least as great as mine, if not more.

It seems to me that there is quite a bit of a double standard at work in our state.  While I could lose my property and go to jail for breaking a law, legislators are allowed to do the same thing with immunity.

At one point in the forum, Mr. Arpke asked what we (schools) need.  We need you to follow the law.  It's not that complicated.  Unless, of course, you are educated at the funding levels Mr. Arpke prefers.