Friday, December 1, 2023

An Anti-Bullying Program that Encourages Bullying by Labeling Others’ Actions

Letters to the Editor submitted to The Coronado Times are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the publisher, editors or writers of this publication. Submit letters to [email protected].

Submitted by Brian Flick

I appreciated the opportunity at the May 20th School Board meeting to share my concerns regarding the Anti-Defamation League’s No Place for Hate (NPFH) program and the broader discussion that revealed that Critical Theory is indeed infiltrating the schools via the Coronado Unified School District’s Equity Committee and potentially under the guise of Social Emotional Learning.

What initially concerned me, is the visible signage on the trees at Village Elementary, that seemed to be advertising hatred exists here in the Coronado community. It suggests that the administrators, teachers, and the community have failed and allowed hate to fester if not outright fostered it – since it could not have possibly popped up overnight. Its very premise is offensive to me as a parent and I imagine to the rest of the community:  The parents of Coronado send their kids to school with hardened hearts.

If the school had a banner that said “No Place for Teenage Pregnancy” one would rightly assume the school has a problem with teenagers getting pregnant.

Furthermore, it suggests that CUSD — and the Board by extension –know what hate is. It suggests that there are haters and the hated. It introduces the word into the minds of kids who before setting foot in one of our schools never considered it or used it without meaning. It seems you now have empowered a four-letter word that will limit the free exchange of opinion–let alone childish thoughts– by instilling fear in a child that may be accused of it.

In fact, during the June 3 School Board meeting a person named “Brian (who has lived in Coronado for 19 years)” sadly confirmed my fears. His comments were read to the Board:

“Unless you approve of bullying or racism in schools you should support the Equity Committee”; “it makes no difference who developed the program unless you have personal anti-Semitic views”; and “unless you approve of hate or bullying you should have no issue with NPFH.”

So now, parents, who simply do not want the disruptive ideology of Critical Theory taught in their public schools or who simply disagree with the No Place for Hate program taking up valuable class time — ARE full of hate, ARE bullies, ARE racists, and ARE Anti-Semites.

If a member of the community who supports kindness and inclusion would say that about other community members voicing their concerns –that he does not even know –imagine the similar immaturity of young minds at school — imagine for a moment, your son or daughter –facing all the normal peer pressures at school– having to decide between being called a racist or signing the pledge and taking part in the NPFH program. An anti-bullying program that encourages bullying by labeling other students’ actions. 

The bottom line is NPFH divides children into two categories: the hated and the hater. Without the context of faith, it is just another word that divides. And we can agree, we have plenty of those already.

Brian Flick



Managing Editor
Managing Editor
Originally from upstate New York, Dani Schwartz has lived in Coronado since 1996. She is happy to call Coronado home and to have raised her children here. In her free time she enjoys reading, exercising, trying new restaurants, and just walking her dog around the "island." Have news to share? Send tips or story ideas to: [email protected]

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