Ohio Democratic Party Says Debe Terhar Should Quit — And They're Right
A number of years ago — back in the dark ages of the Bush administration — the activist group MoveOn invited people to submit videos for a project. They got hundreds of entries, which were posted online. Among them was a suggestion that there might be something a tad Hitler-like about George Bush. It wasn't create by MoveOn, it wasn't featured by them, and it never became part of their message. It was just one of hundreds of obscure amateur videos. But right-wingers went into an uproar, vestiges of which you can still find online today, outraged that "the left" would be guilty of such a beyond-the-pale comparison.
What we've learned since then, however, is that while even a hint of such a message from someone on the left, no matter how insignificant that person may be, is cause for high dudgeon, when someone on the right slings it back — no matter how prominent that person is — it's fair game.
The latest of many right-wingers to use this tactic is Ohio school board president Debe Terhar, a confederate whom Kasich installed in the post via a series of back-room maneuvers in order to fire nationally respected superintendent Deb Delisle (currently an assistant secretary in President Obama's Department of Education).
Not understanding that her position is sensitive and maybe she should watch what comes out of her keyboard, Terhar jumped into the gun control debate (on the anti side, of course), posting a picture of Hitler with the message "“Never forget what this tyrant said: ‘To conquer a nation, first disarm its citizens.’ — Adolf Hitler.”
For those of you who haven't followed this, there's a fiction going around the right that tyrants such as Hitler instituted gun control measure as a prelude to their dictatorships. It's untrue. Terhar should probably be disqualified from any role in education simply for her faulty grasp of history.
Especially for saying something as reality-challenged as this:
“I’m not comparing the president to Adolf Hitler,” she said. “It’s the thought of disarming citizens, and this has happened throughout history. What’s the true intention of the Second Amendment? It was to protect us from a tyrannical government, God forbid.”
She displays a complete ignorance of what has happened "throughout history," the country's gun laws past and present, the content of the gun control debate, and the fact that no one is proposing "disarming citizens" — no one (well, except maybe me if people like her and the NRA keep spouting crap like this). She is not only not contributing to the discussion in a meaningful way, she's poisoning it. She's a terrible example to kids of how to have a reasonable debate.
And maybe she shouldn't be spending time trawling websites like this:
The photograph apparently originated with the Facebook page of Uncle Sam’s Misguided Children, which features a variety of anti-Obama, pro-gun posts and photos, such as scantily clad women hoisting large guns, a polar bear with the words “Holy f*** I’m glad I’m white,” and another saying “Where’s Lee Harvey Oswalt when you need him?”
Anyway you look at it, this woman is a poor example for Ohio's schoolchildren and a liability to education in the state. So I am completely in agreement with the Ohio Democratic Party's call for her to resign for the good of Ohio's children.
ODP chair Chris Redfern released this statement today:
“While there is always room for respectful differences in opinions, State School Board President Terhar’s facebook posting crossed a clear line by connecting the President’s national discussion on guns to Adolf Hitler. President Terhar’s invocation of Hitler is dangerous and should not be tolerated by Governor Kasich and the rest of the State School Board.
In the past, Governor Kasich has called for more civility in the political debate, and now he has a prime opportunity to back up his words with action. In the absence of a full, formal apology from Terhar, Kasich has a duty to remove his hand-picked State School Board President from office. Under no circumstances is it permissible for Governor Kasich to look the other way while members of his Administration use dangerous, inflammatory rhetoric and images to further their political ideology.
Precisely. But I'm not holding my breath. When Republicans call for "civility," what they mean is "Democrats should do everything we want."