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Guest Tom

A question for Matthew's classmates

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Guest Tom

College interviews will take place for Matthew and his classmates. I have a question for those classmates, especially those who were in Mr. Paszkiewicz's history class with him.

Let's assume an interviewer knows or finds out that you were in that class.

Assume further that the interviewer asks you why you didn't speak up for Matthew, who was telling the truth.

It's a legitimate question, which goes to your character.

What are you going to say?

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Guest Frank
College interviews will take place for Matthew and his classmates. I have a question for those classmates, especially those who were in Mr. Paszkiewicz's history class with him.

Let's assume an interviewer knows or finds out that you were in that class.

Assume further that the interviewer asks you why you didn't speak up for Matthew, who was telling the truth.

It's a legitimate question, which goes to your character.

What are you going to say?

ANSWER ME!!!!! Why were you doing nothing when Matthew was being beaten and bashed by that bible thumping Paszkiewicz?

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Guest Guest
College interviews will take place for Matthew and his classmates. I have a question for those classmates, especially those who were in Mr. Paszkiewicz's history class with him.

Let's assume an interviewer knows or finds out that you were in that class.

Assume further that the interviewer asks you why you didn't speak up for Matthew, who was telling the truth.

It's a legitimate question, which goes to your character.

What are you going to say?

Hold on a minute. Now you want to talk about character. Not unless you're willing to talk about Matt's character. And don't forget motives, ethics, and his past history of trying to find someone to give the screw job to.

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Guest Paul
Hold on a minute.  Now you want to talk about character.  Not unless you're willing to talk about Matt's character.  And don't forget motives, ethics, and his past history of trying to find someone to give the screw job to.

Tom already talked about Matt's character, several times.

I'll make you a deal, if you have the character to come forward to make good on your end of it. I'll let you know if any of Matthew's interviewers asks him that question or sees it as you suggest. I'll wager you that they won't on either count. I'll also be sure to let you know what they do say to him about it - after he has made his choice of a college.

When can I expect to hear from you on this, oh one of great character?

Don't you ever get tired of putting your foot in your mouth?

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Guest InoWhoZwas
College interviews will take place for Matthew and his classmates. I have a question for those classmates, especially those who were in Mr. Paszkiewicz's history class with him.

Let's assume an interviewer knows or finds out that you were in that class.

Assume further that the interviewer asks you why you didn't speak up for Matthew, who was telling the truth.

It's a legitimate question, which goes to your character.

What are you going to say?

The truth has no meaning in this Town. The damage done to date is irreversible

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Guest Guest
College interviews will take place for Matthew and his classmates. I have a question for those classmates, especially those who were in Mr. Paszkiewicz's history class with him.

Let's assume an interviewer knows or finds out that you were in that class.

Assume further that the interviewer asks you why you didn't speak up for Matthew, who was telling the truth.

It's a legitimate question, which goes to your character.

What are you going to say?

I would tell the interviewer that the reason I did not speak up was that a majority of the discussion that was ongoing in the class was between Matthew and Mr. Paszkiewicz. It was not something that went on everyday and the subject was one that certain members of the class seemed interested it. Also, not being known that he was taping the entire class seemed to be something that bothered me. If he said he was going to use it as a study aide and left it openly out then maybe I would have thought differently of him. But, Matthew does come along with some baggage as stirring up controversy in the past, and it is not something that I wanted to be apart of. And if the subject of religion does come up in the class, I do not understand why it along with other religions can't be discussed. And like I said it was not something that was brought up everyday in class. To me it seems more like a personal attack, and I did not want to be a part of that. But that is just my opinion.

That is what I would tell the interviewer.

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Guest Paul
I would tell the interviewer that the reason I did not speak up was that a majority of the discussion that was ongoing in the class was between Matthew and Mr. Paszkiewicz.  It was not something that went on everyday and the subject was one that certain members of the class seemed interested it.  Also, not being known that he was taping the entire class seemed to be something that bothered me. If he said he was going to use it as a study aide and left it openly out then maybe I would have thought differently of him.  But, Matthew does come along with some baggage as stirring up controversy in the past, and it is not something that I wanted to be apart of. And if the subject of religion does come up in the class, I do not understand why it along with other religions can't be discussed. And like I said it was not something that was brought up everyday in class.  To me it seems more like a personal attack, and I did not want to be a part of that. But that is just my opinion.

That is what I would tell the interviewer.

Good. You tell them that. Let us know whether you get admitted.

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College interviews will take place for Matthew and his classmates. I have a question for those classmates, especially those who were in Mr. Paszkiewicz's history class with him.

Let's assume an interviewer knows or finds out that you were in that class.

Assume further that the interviewer asks you why you didn't speak up for Matthew, who was telling the truth.

It's a legitimate question, which goes to your character.

What are you going to say?

1-Mathew was very sneaky about the whole thing.

2-If his purpose was not to hurt the teacher why did he hide the recording device?

3-If he was having a problem with this teacher, he should have talked to the teacher. Which is hard to believe he was having any problem with the teacher since school has just started and according to Matthew, he never had Mr. P before.

4-As everyone can hear on the recordings, Matthew asked about 90% of the questions and participated of the discussions. To many it sounds more like that he was enjoying the class, not someone that was having a problem with the class. He acted interested and asked the question so he could get the results he wanted.

5-Come to his defense? If no one knew about his plans, defend him of what? According to Matthew, when he was at the principal’s office with Mr. P. he was there to defend the students, but yet no one (his classmates) knew he was there. It did not look like Matthew needed anyone to defend him, his was going to be SUPER MATT and save KHS from this very evil teacher that defended him (MATT) in class when he wanted his opinion to be heard and the class did not agreed with him.

6-I would say the truth was distorted for Mathew’s own purpose. Only the things that would be helpful to Matt came out. The things that Mr. P. said was given in sound bites, taken out of context, so when a person heard parts of it, the first reaction it would be to crucify the teacher. So Matt’s plan worked somewhat. But, I’m happy to see that we still have people that can see right through the sneaky and manipulative boy that he is.

7-Heroes are the ones that die to preserve the liberties that you enjoy, heroes were the people that on 9/11 went back into that building to save someones life, knowing that he or she could die, a person that acts sneaky and with false pretense for his own purpose that is not a HERO.

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Good. You tell them that. Let us know whether you get admitted.

At least this person will be able to live with that decision, knowing that he did not have buy his own recognition, scholarship and awards.

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Guest Tom
I would tell the interviewer that the reason I did not speak up was that a majority of the discussion that was ongoing in the class was between Matthew and Mr. Paszkiewicz.  It was not something that went on everyday and the subject was one that certain members of the class seemed interested it.  Also, not being known that he was taping the entire class seemed to be something that bothered me. If he said he was going to use it as a study aide and left it openly out then maybe I would have thought differently of him.  But, Matthew does come along with some baggage as stirring up controversy in the past, and it is not something that I wanted to be apart of. And if the subject of religion does come up in the class, I do not understand why it along with other religions can't be discussed. And like I said it was not something that was brought up everyday in class.  To me it seems more like a personal attack, and I did not want to be a part of that. But that is just my opinion.

That is what I would tell the interviewer.

So you say those things. Let’s suppose the interviewer then asks whether you were raising your hand to join the discussion, or you were just sitting there watching it. Do you really think he’s going to believe that you would have participated if Matthew had been saying less, or that Paszkiewicz wasn’t calling on you even though you raised your hand? What are you going to tell him if he asks you that?

Or let’s suppose he asks you whether you were aware that such comments from a public school teacher violate the Constitution. Are you going to tell him you knew that, or that you didn’t know? If you tell him you knew, how are you going to justify your silence thereafter when Matthew was being attacked? What are you going to say if he asks you whether you said anything of a disparaging nature against Matthew? And if you tell him you didn’t know, how are you going to answer him if he asks you why his university should admit someone who doesn’t understand something so basic about the US Constitution? Or are you going to argue with him, saying that’s not the law? If so, you had better hope he’s willing to accept the radical right’s attempt to rewrite established Constitutional law. Because you guys can say whatever you want, most of us aren't buying it.

And let’s say that he asks you what Matthew having taped the class has to do with your remaining silent while he was being verbally assaulted and threatened. Let’s say he asks you why that isn’t a separate issue and why you didn’t have the courage or integrity to stand up for your classmate. What are you going to say?

And let’s say that he points out that Matthew recorded the classes because he suspected the teacher wouldn’t tell the truth and that his classmates would be too worried about their own grades to do what was right, and that Matthew was right on both counts. And then let’s say he asks you why he shouldn’t think you’re just another one of the low-class kids at Kearny High who don’t have the integrity to do what’s right or even the smarts to know what is right, and why should we want someone like that at our college. What are you going to say if he asks you that?

And what are you going to say if he says that what you’re calling Matthew’s baggage is just your way of expressing your own baggage. “Why shouldn’t I believe that you just don’t like dissent, and since our college values dissent, why should we want you?” What are you going to say if he asks you that?

“So you think so little of our Constitution that you call defending it ‘stirring up trouble.’ Didn’t you just admit to me that you don’t want to be part of defending our Constitution? Why should we want someone at our university who thinks so little of the Constitution?” How will you answer that one?

Or if he asks you why you can’t understand the difference between having a discussion about religion and a teacher using his classroom to preach his religion. “Why should we want you if you don’t get this?” What are you going to say then?

“This isn’t some ticky-tack little high school,” says your interviewer. “You’re applying to college now, and so you need to understand that while your high school may just have been interested in pumping you full of enough information to get to into a decent college, we are a university competing with other universities to make a name for ourselves. We’re looking for people who think and challenge, and will help us move our university into the forefront on scholarship and research. In short, we’re looking for people with some guts and some imagination. Do you have Matthew’s number or know how we can reach him?”

You probably won’t have an interviewer ask you any of these questions. But you’re very likely to have several who will think them, and if that happens, you’ve got a problem. And you should have a problem.

With one simple act of courage, Matthew LaClair increased his chances of getting into a good school, and every other student is his class diminished theirs by their silence and inaction. You kept your silence while your classmate was being attacked because you didn’t want to cause yourself any problems, the classic definition of a coward. Good luck finding a top college. If you were in that classroom and you’re name isn’t Matthew LaClair, you don’t deserve one.

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if the subject of religion does come up in the class, I do not understand why it along with other religions can't be discussed.

Sure it can be discussed, in the proper historical context. Do you think that talking about who does and doesn't deserve to suffer for eternity (a.k.a. "belong in Hell") is such a context? Honestly.

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Guest Paul
1-Mathew was very sneaky about the whole thing.

2-If his purpose was not to hurt the teacher why did he hide the recording device?

3-If he was having a problem with this teacher, he should have talked to the teacher. Which is hard to believe he was having any problem with the teacher since school has just started and according to Matthew, he never had Mr. P before. 

4-As everyone can hear on the recordings, Matthew asked about 90% of the questions and participated of the discussions. To many it sounds more like that he was enjoying the class, not someone that was having a problem with the class. He acted interested and asked the question so he could get the results he wanted.

5-Come to his defense? If no one knew about his plans, defend him of what? According to Matthew, when he was at the principal’s office with Mr. P. he was there to defend the students, but yet no one (his classmates) knew he was there. It did not look like Matthew needed anyone to defend him, his was going to be SUPER MATT and save KHS from this very evil teacher that defended him (MATT) in class when he wanted his opinion to be heard and the class did not agreed with him.

6-I would say the truth was distorted for Mathew’s own purpose. Only the things that would be helpful to Matt came out. The things that Mr. P. said was given in sound bites, taken out of context, so when a person heard parts of it, the first reaction it would be to crucify the teacher. So Matt’s plan worked somewhat. But, I’m happy to see that we still have people that can see right through the sneaky and manipulative boy that he is.

7-Heroes are the ones that die to preserve the liberties that you enjoy, heroes were the people that on 9/11 went back into that building to save someones life, knowing that he or she could die, a person that acts sneaky and with false pretense for his own purpose that is not a HERO.

We've addressed every one of these points and answered every one of these questions before. I'll answer them yet again, not that you're going to be any more open to the answers than you have been before.

1. Matthew did the only thing that would be effective.

2. Because if Matthew had revealed the recorder, Paszkiewicz would have stopped doing what he was doing in that one class and continued doing it in all the other classes, thereby subjected an entire generation of KHS students to improper religious proselytizing. The administration and later the community (when the administration did not act) were entitled to know how far out of bounds this teacher was. A surreptitious recording was the only way to accomplish that.

3. No, he had no obligation to talk to a teacher who was completely out of control and obviously on a personal mission, in conflict with his duties as a public school teacher.

4. Whether Matthew was enjoying the exchange is completely irrelevant. That is the law, per Engel v. Vitale. The teacher is supposed to be in control of his classroom. Your argument is like a person accused of statutory rape claiming he's innocent because the girl was exceptionally pretty.

5. Students should have come to their classmates defense after other students falsely denied what Paszkiewicz had done. They should also have come to his defense against the abuse he was subjected to, and to protest that he was being attacked. One student in that class did come to his defense physically, and we have thanked him for it. Your argument is talking about another point in time and therefore misses the point.

6. Absolutely false. The recordings are still on Canessa's blog in their entirety, with the sole exception that students' names are redacted.

7. That's a false choice. There are many kinds of heroes, including those rare individuals like Matthew who stand against the crowd to do what is right. I suggest you re-read the last few pages of the first Harry Potter novel and report back to us on whose ten points won Gryffendor the award that year, and why.

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Guest Paul
It did not look like Matthew needed anyone to defend him, his was going to be SUPER MATT and save KHS from this very evil teacher that defended him (MATT) in class when he wanted his opinion to be heard and the class did not agreed with him.

By the way, this "teacher" had the audacity to tell Matthew that if he was sincerely seeking, he would abandon the religion in which he raised him and adopt the teacher's religion. That was absolutely none of his business, and you should be ashamed of yourself defending it.

Your argument is familiar because you're singing Paszkiewicz's party line, so obviously you're either a member of his church or a friend of his or one of his student lap dogs. Two or more people might say the same thing if it's true, but the only way people say something like this is if they're spouting the party line.

And by the way, Matthew didn't need anyone to defend him then, but Paszkiewicz didn't know that and thought he could take advantage of his mostly Christian class to convert or at least browbeat a non-Christian, which is exactly what he can't use his classroom to do. Matt needed people to stand up for him later when he was being attacked. You missed the point.

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Guest Paul
At least this person will be able to live with that decision, knowing that he did not have buy his own recognition, scholarship and awards.

Matthew didn't buy anything. All of that was given to him, quite enthusiastically. Let's review it.

1. Three monetary awards.

2. Four honorary awards.

3. Three editorials, two in the nation's leading newspaper.

4. Multiple TV and radio appearances.

5. Half a dozen speaking engagements, so far.

6. A summer internship at a major financial house, offered by the former chairman, who extremely well-known and well-connected, mainly in business circles.

7. A glowing endorsement from the Kearny Board of Education.

8. Multiple supporters on blogs and on KOTW.

9. Hundreds of messages of support on KOTW, from all over the world.

10. National and international acclaim.

11. A first-name relationship with some very well-known and powerful people, all of whom respect him tremendously. Now I suppose it's possible that people respect you, too, but we'll never know will we, since you don't have the guts to tell us who you are while you're attacking my 17-year-old son. You're disgusting.

Go ahead. Keep babbling and I'll keep reminding you of the truth, which you don't want to hear or acknowledge.

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Guest Paul
So you say those things. Let’s suppose the interviewer then asks whether you were raising your hand to join the discussion, or you were just sitting there watching it. Do you really think he’s going to believe that you would have participated if Matthew had been saying less, or that Paszkiewicz wasn’t calling on you even though you raised your hand? What are you going to tell him if he asks you that?

Or let’s suppose he asks you whether you were aware that such comments from a public school teacher violate the Constitution. Are you going to tell him you knew that, or that you didn’t know? If you tell him you knew, how are you going to justify your silence thereafter when Matthew was being attacked? What are you going to say if he asks you whether you said anything of a disparaging nature against Matthew? And if you tell him you didn’t know, how are you going to answer him if he asks you why his university should admit someone who doesn’t understand something so basic about the US Constitution? Or are you going to argue with him, saying that’s not the law? If so, you had better hope he’s willing to accept the radical right’s attempt to rewrite established Constitutional law. Because you guys can say whatever you want, most of us aren't buying it.

And let’s say that he asks you what Matthew having taped the class has to do with your remaining silent while he was being verbally assaulted and threatened. Let’s say he asks you why that isn’t a separate issue and why you didn’t have the courage or integrity to stand up for your classmate. What are you going to say?

And let’s say that he points out that Matthew recorded the classes because he suspected the teacher wouldn’t tell the truth and that his classmates would be too worried about their own grades to do what was right, and that Matthew was right on both counts. And then let’s say he asks you why he shouldn’t think you’re just another one of the low-class kids at Kearny High who don’t have the integrity to do what’s right or even the smarts to know what is right, and why should we want someone like that at our college. What are you going to say if he asks you that?

And what are you going to say if he says that what you’re calling Matthew’s baggage is just your way of expressing your own baggage. “Why shouldn’t I believe that you just don’t like dissent, and since our college values dissent, why should we want you?” What are you going to say if he asks you that?

“So you think so little of our Constitution that you call defending it ‘stirring up trouble.’ Didn’t you just admit to me that you don’t want to be part of defending our Constitution? Why should we want someone at our university who thinks so little of the Constitution?” How will you answer that one?

Or if he asks you why you can’t understand the difference between having a discussion about religion and a teacher using his classroom to preach his religion. “Why should we want you if you don’t get this?” What are you going to say then?

“This isn’t some ticky-tack little high school,” says your interviewer. “You’re applying to college now, and so you need to understand that while your high school may just have been interested in pumping you full of enough information to get to into a decent college, we are a university competing with other universities to make a name for ourselves. We’re looking for people who think and challenge, and will help us move our university into the forefront on scholarship and research. In short, we’re looking for people with some guts and some imagination. Do you have Matthew’s number or know how we can reach him?”

You probably won’t have an interviewer ask you any of these questions. But you’re very likely to have several who will think them, and if that happens, you’ve got a problem. And you should have a problem.

With one simple act of courage, Matthew LaClair increased his chances of getting into a good school, and every other student is his class diminished theirs by their silence and inaction. You kept your silence while your classmate was being attacked because you didn’t want to cause yourself any problems, the classic definition of a coward. Good luck finding a top college. If you were in that classroom and you’re name isn’t Matthew LaClair, you don’t deserve one.

Woof. the points are all right on target and it's good to see them, but the final conclusion is too harsh.

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Good. You tell them that. Let us know whether you get admitted.

Now you've made Paul mad. He only likes his version of the story. He doesn't get the idea that there are many sides to a issue.

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Tom already talked about Matt's character, several times.

I'll make you a deal, if you have the character to come forward to make good on your end of it. I'll let you know if any of Matthew's interviewers asks him that question or sees it as you suggest. I'll wager you that they won't on either count. I'll also be sure to let you know what they do say to him about it - after he has made his choice of a college.

When can I expect to hear from you on this, oh one of great character?

Don't you ever get tired of putting your foot in your mouth?

We're talking about Matt here. If you don't like it go away.

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1-Mathew was very sneaky about the whole thing.

2-If his purpose was not to hurt the teacher why did he hide the recording device?

3-If he was having a problem with this teacher, he should have talked to the teacher. Which is hard to believe he was having any problem with the teacher since school has just started and according to Matthew, he never had Mr. P before. 

4-As everyone can hear on the recordings, Matthew asked about 90% of the questions and participated of the discussions. To many it sounds more like that he was enjoying the class, not someone that was having a problem with the class. He acted interested and asked the question so he could get the results he wanted.

5-Come to his defense? If no one knew about his plans, defend him of what? According to Matthew, when he was at the principal’s office with Mr. P. he was there to defend the students, but yet no one (his classmates) knew he was there. It did not look like Matthew needed anyone to defend him, his was going to be SUPER MATT and save KHS from this very evil teacher that defended him (MATT) in class when he wanted his opinion to be heard and the class did not agreed with him.

6-I would say the truth was distorted for Mathew’s own purpose. Only the things that would be helpful to Matt came out. The things that Mr. P. said was given in sound bites, taken out of context, so when a person heard parts of it, the first reaction it would be to crucify the teacher. So Matt’s plan worked somewhat. But, I’m happy to see that we still have people that can see right through the sneaky and manipulative boy that he is.

7-Heroes are the ones that die to preserve the liberties that you enjoy, heroes were the people that on 9/11 went back into that building to save someones life, knowing that he or she could die, a person that acts sneaky and with false pretense for his own purpose that is not a HERO.

That's one good point that nobody seems to mention. Why didn't Matt just lay his recorder right down on top of his desk? It may have stopped Mr. P from preaching right then and there. If Mr. P continued preaching then Matt would have his record to protect himself.

But I guess those weren't the results Matt was after.

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Matthew didn't buy anything. All of that was given to him, quite enthusiastically. Let's review it.

1. Three monetary awards.

2. Four honorary awards.

3. Three editorials, two in the nation's leading newspaper.

4. Multiple TV and radio appearances.

5. Half a dozen speaking engagements, so far.

6. A summer internship at a major financial house, offered by the former chairman, who extremely well-known and well-connected, mainly in business circles.

7. A glowing endorsement from the Kearny Board of Education.

8. Multiple supporters on blogs and on KOTW.

9. Hundreds of messages of support on KOTW, from all over the world.

10. National and international acclaim.

11. A first-name relationship with some very well-known and powerful people, all of whom respect him tremendously. Now I suppose it's possible that people respect you, too, but we'll never know will we, since you don't have the guts to tell us who you are while you're attacking my 17-year-old son. You're disgusting.

Go ahead. Keep babbling and I'll keep reminding you of the truth, which you don't want to hear or acknowledge.

I thought he didn't do this for personal gain?

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Good. You tell them that. Let us know whether you get admitted.

I will tell him that Sir. The last I looked this is still the United States and if asked my opinion I will give it and there is NOTHING you can do to stop me. And with my grade and my achievements I have achieved here at Kearny High far surpass what your son has done in this school and for this school, so see where that gets you. And why should I have to tell you anything? This is a public forum the last I looked. I will get in and I will do good because that is what I was taught in this great school at Kearny High. So stick that in your lawyer ......., where ever you stick it.

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By the way, this "teacher" had the audacity to tell Matthew that if he was sincerely seeking, he would abandon the religion in which we raised him and adopt the teacher's religion. That was absolutely none of his business, and you should be ashamed of yourself defending it.

Your argument is familiar because you're singing Paszkiewicz's party line, so obviously you're either a member of his church or a friend of his or one of his student lap dogs. Two or more people might say the same thing if it's true, but the only way people say something like this is if they're spouting the party line.

And by the way, Matthew didn't need anyone to defend him then, but Paszkiewicz didn't know that and thought he could take advantage of his mostly Christian class to convert or at least browbeat a non-Christian, which is exactly what he can't use his classroom to do. Matt needed people to stand up for him later when he was being attacked. You missed the point.

You are a very difficult person to figure out. In reading nearly all your posts in this forum, you are against religion and be belief of the existence of god. And yet here you say this teacher is trying to abandon Matthew against the religion you raised him too. So I wonder what religion did you raise him too since you do not believe in god?

Somewhere here there is a major disconnect. I can almost understand why your son is the way he is with this type of thinking.

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So you say those things. Let’s suppose the interviewer then asks whether you were raising your hand to join the discussion, or you were just sitting there watching it. Do you really think he’s going to believe that you would have participated if Matthew had been saying less, or that Paszkiewicz wasn’t calling on you even though you raised your hand? What are you going to tell him if he asks you that?

Or let’s suppose he asks you whether you were aware that such comments from a public school teacher violate the Constitution. Are you going to tell him you knew that, or that you didn’t know? If you tell him you knew, how are you going to justify your silence thereafter when Matthew was being attacked? What are you going to say if he asks you whether you said anything of a disparaging nature against Matthew? And if you tell him you didn’t know, how are you going to answer him if he asks you why his university should admit someone who doesn’t understand something so basic about the US Constitution? Or are you going to argue with him, saying that’s not the law? If so, you had better hope he’s willing to accept the radical right’s attempt to rewrite established Constitutional law. Because you guys can say whatever you want, most of us aren't buying it.

And let’s say that he asks you what Matthew having taped the class has to do with your remaining silent while he was being verbally assaulted and threatened. Let’s say he asks you why that isn’t a separate issue and why you didn’t have the courage or integrity to stand up for your classmate. What are you going to say?

And let’s say that he points out that Matthew recorded the classes because he suspected the teacher wouldn’t tell the truth and that his classmates would be too worried about their own grades to do what was right, and that Matthew was right on both counts. And then let’s say he asks you why he shouldn’t think you’re just another one of the low-class kids at Kearny High who don’t have the integrity to do what’s right or even the smarts to know what is right, and why should we want someone like that at our college. What are you going to say if he asks you that?

And what are you going to say if he says that what you’re calling Matthew’s baggage is just your way of expressing your own baggage. “Why shouldn’t I believe that you just don’t like dissent, and since our college values dissent, why should we want you?” What are you going to say if he asks you that?

“So you think so little of our Constitution that you call defending it ‘stirring up trouble.’ Didn’t you just admit to me that you don’t want to be part of defending our Constitution? Why should we want someone at our university who thinks so little of the Constitution?” How will you answer that one?

Or if he asks you why you can’t understand the difference between having a discussion about religion and a teacher using his classroom to preach his religion. “Why should we want you if you don’t get this?” What are you going to say then?

“This isn’t some ticky-tack little high school,” says your interviewer. “You’re applying to college now, and so you need to understand that while your high school may just have been interested in pumping you full of enough information to get to into a decent college, we are a university competing with other universities to make a name for ourselves. We’re looking for people who think and challenge, and will help us move our university into the forefront on scholarship and research. In short, we’re looking for people with some guts and some imagination. Do you have Matthew’s number or know how we can reach him?”

You probably won’t have an interviewer ask you any of these questions. But you’re very likely to have several who will think them, and if that happens, you’ve got a problem. And you should have a problem.

With one simple act of courage, Matthew LaClair increased his chances of getting into a good school, and every other student is his class diminished theirs by their silence and inaction. You kept your silence while your classmate was being attacked because you didn’t want to cause yourself any problems, the classic definition of a coward. Good luck finding a top college. If you were in that classroom and you’re name isn’t Matthew LaClair, you don’t deserve one.

I would tell him my religion is a very personal thing and I would listen attentively like I do in all subjects and formulate my own opinions. Whether they are brought up in class or not is my decision. And from the class discussions there were no attacks from either side, verbal or otherwise. You were not there. At no time during this class discussion did Matthew or Mr. P bring up the subject of the Constitution, so that was not an issue. I would ask the interviewer to review the tapes for himself for him to make his own assessment. I think my own character stands for itself and I do have creativity and imagination. And I am sure I would tell the benefits of how I could be an asset to this college.

And especially at the end of this interviewer speech to me I would make sure to get his name and number and notify this college of his interview tactics. This teacher has been teaching for a number of years with a large number of students getting accepted to great institutions like MIT and similar. I would say that Mr. P's teachings have not effected in any way how successful the other students who have passed through the halls of Kearny High. I hope to be one of those success stories. Matthew's handling and my own opinions of how he mishandled or handled it, have no effect on me.

That is what I would tell him, Sir.

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That's one good point that nobody seems to mention.  Why didn't Matt just lay his recorder right down on top of his desk? It may have stopped Mr. P from preaching right then and there.

Yeah, in that class--not in any of his others.

You guys just can't seem to think anything through, can you? This wasn't and never was about some personal offense of Matthew's--he saw that Paszkiewicz was doing wrong on the job, and he wanted it to stop. Not just in that class, but altogether.

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I will tell him that Sir.  The last I looked this is still the United States and if asked my opinion I will give it and there is NOTHING you can do to stop me.

He said nothing contrary to that. Competitive schools don't want sheep, though.

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