smf’s 2c in 4LAKidsNews
Friday Jan 3, 2014 :: The LA Times editorial board offered some excellent advice to the board of Ed on New Years Eve:
“Talk less. Do more. You're a group of people with sharply differing opinions and philosophies. That's great. Disagree. Succinctly. Then find an area of agreement and take a vote.” | http://lat.ms/1gyuT6d
Next Tuesday the board needs to decide whether to call an election or make an appointment to fill the seat vacated by the untimely death of Marguerite LaMotte.
I am all for elective democracy – and in The Best of All Possible Worlds the board would call an election and the good citizens of District One would elect someone and the seat would be filled in time for that person to vote on the Local Control Funding Formula, the iPads, the District budget for 2014-15, rehiring or not rehiring laid off employees, class size reduction and any of the hundreds of things that will come up for a vote between now and and a general election in June. Or maybe November.
But first, the expression “The Best of All Possible Worlds” was inserted in sarcasm into this blog post – just as it was inserted into Candide by Voltaire in 1759. Candide is a satire of the optimism of the Age of Enlightenment.
We live in a Representative Democracy and this is a moment for our elected representatives to show some leadership; not to worry themselves into a dither or to retreat to a back room and make the unions, politicos, billionaires or the mayor (or any number of former mayors) happy. I’m sure Eli Broad and Richard Riordan and Bill Gates and Eric Garcetti and Antonio Villaraigosa and Michael Bloomberg and Warren Fletcher all have their favorite candidates …but they do not live in the First District!
And, gentle readers, nether do any of the six surviving LAUSD Board Members.
The Board should decide that they are going to appoint someone – and then they must make an effort to go into the First District and listen to the community and then they should interview candidates in an open and transparent process and then four of them should agree on someone and make the appointment.
It’s not unfair, it’s Leadership …and it’s what is called for Tuesday.
This is not anti-democratic; the voters approved this process when they approved the City Charter and they elected the decision makers when they elected the six members currently on the board.
There are two potential candidates being spoken of today. Jimmie Woods Gray and George McKenna III. If anyone cares I have signed petitions supporting both of them; they have both been there and done that – they both have drawers full of the t-shirts!
If the board can’t agree on them they should find someone with the assistance of the community that four of them can agree on.