Cedar Rapids Educator’s Facebook Post To Boys Goes Viral
The principal for Cedar Rapids Kennedy High School, Jason Kline, posted a Facebook message to students and encouraged other educators to do the same in light of recent comments by presidential candidate Donald Trump. His statement has been shared more than 29,000 times and received more than 6,000 comments.
Here is the entire Facebook post:
I am making this public because I don't care if I offend anyone. As a high school educator and as a male I think it's important that I am clear on something.
To my students, but especially to the boys: I want to be sure you know. What we have learned about Donald Trump and how he speaks about and treats women is not ok. It's not ok for a 60 year old man, its not ok for a 13 year old boy. It's not ok for anyone.
Women are not a conquest. Women are not something you can just take as your possession. Women are not objects. I know that you know this. But I want to be sure you aren't getting mixed messages. Girls, if you are told that you should be treated this way, that is wrong. And if you are treated this way, I recommend you walk far away and you tell someone, an adult, about what happened. Because it is wrong.
Some have decided that since a presidential candidate can talk as he has about women, minorities, disabled people, etc. that it is legitimate to harbor and even express these same ideas. Well I am telling you it is not.
Real men don't treat women this way. We don't talk about women this way. We don't cheat on our spouses. We don't force ourselves on women. We don't joke about assaulting women. We don't make light of assaulting women. We don't strategize about assaulting women. Rapists do these things. Not real men.
I urge any and all educators to push this kind of message out. This goes far beyond politics. Some may criticize me for being political or imposing my views as a public educator. I disagree. What I am expressing here is a message of decency and civility. I feel that, as a possible role model to children, it's my duty to make sure I am not ambiguous on a topic like this.
According to the Gazette, a spokeswoman for the Cedar Rapids Community School District said the district “does not condone the political framing” of Kline’s comments but agrees “with the sentiment regarding the respectful treatment of women.”
When I read Kline's Facebook post, my immediate reaction was, 'Thank God this man is in our school system.' I don't say that because of any feeling for or against Donald Trump. The release of that video recording last week has since opened an important conversation, as these type of things so often do. Our educators, as role models, have a unique opportunity to influence kids with their words and their actions. I, for one, am glad Jason Kline works in Cedar Rapids and felt compelled to stand up and be heard. I suspect his words will save at least one woman from being disrespected, or far worse, and for that I commend him.
Please feel free to share your thoughts below.
[via The Gazette]