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For months, at least a few writers on KOTW were taunting me to produce the recorings of the meeting in principal Somma's office on October 10, 2006, apparently thinking we did not have them. They are now online at:

http://thecanessacorner.blogspot.com/2007/...wicz-first.html

And no, the Observer is not the only news organization that has them.

These recordings support our charges to the letter. Throughout the meeting, Mr. Paszkiewicz denied many of the statements he made, used his authority to attempt to intimidate and bully a sixteen-year-old, interrupted him on numerous occasions, used several ploys (appeal to sympathy, "I thought we were friends," etc.) to break the student down and in the end when confronted with the in-class recordings, said "you got the big fish" --- all just as we said all along. All the while, Mr. Somma, who should have been seeing to it that the meeting was conducted fairly, let it happen.

No doubt Mr. Paszkiewicz's apologists will not be deterred by the facts. They haven't been so far, and I doubt they will be now. However, those are the facts. Mr. Paszkiewicz's conduct in that meeting is shameful.

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What a shame that it had to be like this.

As I type this, there are not yet any posted comments on this thread. But I feel confident in predicting that none of the previous complainers will be happy. Before it was, "You can't prove Mr. P. lied! If you had it on tape, you'd have posted it!" Now, it will be, "You should be ashamed, taping people without their knowledge, setting them up. Again! This just proves how awful you people are."

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For months, at least a few writers on KOTW were taunting me to produce the recor[d]ings of the meeting in principal Somma's office on October 10, 2006, apparently thinking we did not have them. They are now online at:

http://thecanessacorner.blogspot.com/2007/...wicz-first.html

And no, the Observer is not the only news organization that has them.

Good.

These recordings support our charges to the letter.

No, they don't.

Throughout the meeting, Mr. Paszkiewicz denied many of the statements he made, used his authority to attempt to intimidate and bully a sixteen-year-old, interrupted him on numerous occasions, used several ploys (appeal to sympathy, "I thought we were friends," etc.) to break the student down and in the end when confronted with the in-class recordings, said "you got the big fish" --- all just as we said all along.

The "big fish" comment, as with so many others in this case, turns out to have been twisted by omission of the relevant context.

But thanks for making the recordings available! It was hard to show otherwise while you and junior were keeping them to yourselves.

All the while, Mr. Somma, who should have been seeing to it that the meeting was conducted fairly, let it happen.

You should sue Somma for helping to subject poor Matthew to emotional distress.

Oh, sorry. You're apparently already set to do that.

No doubt Mr. Paszkiewicz's apologists will not be deterred by the facts.

No doubt "poisoning the well" is favorite fallacy among lawyers.

Paszkiewicz is vindicated by the recordings, if anything, and it is clear in several instances that Matthew misrepresents the facts, even though he proclaims at the end that "everything" he said was true.

Even with the recordings he couldn't get his facts straight.

They haven't been so far, and I doubt they will be now. However, those are the facts.

And again, thanks for making them available.

We can do without the poisoning the well fallacy, however.

Mr. Paszkiewicz's conduct in that meeting is shameful.

No, it wasn't.

But did you notice Matthew? He said that he had to record Paszkiewicz's lecture because he didn't feel "safe."

But he said he did feel safe in the meeting.

But he recorded the meeting, also.

But don't worry, Paul. Just flip on the Mikidkindoonorongitron and you can keep right on viewing him as your little angel.

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For months, at least a few writers on KOTW were taunting me to produce the recorings of the meeting in principal Somma's office on October 10, 2006, apparently thinking we did not have them. They are now online at:

http://thecanessacorner.blogspot.com/2007/...wicz-first.html

And no, the Observer is not the only news organization that has them.

These recordings support our charges to the letter. Throughout the meeting, Mr. Paszkiewicz denied many of the statements he made, used his authority to attempt to intimidate and bully a sixteen-year-old, interrupted him on numerous occasions, used several ploys (appeal to sympathy, "I thought we were friends," etc.) to break the student down and in the end when confronted with the in-class recordings, said "you got the big fish" --- all just as we said all along. All the while, Mr. Somma, who should have been seeing to it that the meeting was conducted fairly, let it happen.

No doubt Mr. Paszkiewicz's apologists will not be deterred by the facts. They haven't been so far, and I doubt they will be now. However, those are the facts. Mr. Paszkiewicz's conduct in that meeting is shameful.

After listening to this recording, all I have to say is "WOW"!

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No doubt Mr. Paszkiewicz's apologists will not be deterred by the facts. They haven't been so far, and I doubt they will be now. However, those are the facts. Mr. Paszkiewicz's conduct in that meeting is shameful.

Christians in general are deterred by facts. They don't like facts. Facts are provable, unlike their faith, which they expect everyone to buy into.

How sad for Mr. P that he is finally exposed for the bigot he really is.

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Christians in general are deterred by facts.  They don't like facts.  Facts are provable, unlike their faith, which they expect everyone to buy into.

This is unfair. Don't generalize all Christians--I know a few personally (and am aware of a fair number online) who are quite able to and content with keep(ing) their faith to themselves, while being open to scientific facts etc.

How sad for Mr. P that he is finally exposed for the bigot he really is.

I think that exposition happened a while back...this just puts to rest a couple more of the baseless allegations leveled against Matthew and Paul.

We already knew Mr. P. was a bigot from the other recordings...but these proved beyond any doubt that he is also a liar. I can't believe he had the gall to guilt-trip Matthew with all that "I have four kids, one of them has a kidney disease, I've been teaching for 15 years" stuff, as if Matthew was spreading dirty/false rumors about him. His own words are his downfall...what's most pathetic is that despite everything he said in class, it would not have jeopardized his reputation, EXCEPT that he insisted on lying about what he said and acting justified in preaching religion in public school. And that is no one's fault but his.

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After listening to this recording, all I have to say is "WOW"!

I would like to address the recently released recordings of the meeting that took place between, Mr. Somma, Matthew LaCliar, and Mr. P. But before doing so I'd like to remind you from where it is my perspective comes from.

As many of you have been regulars on this board know, I am Christian. I have made no secret of that the fact and have on a few occasions acted on my faith by putting into words what I felt was proper behavior of those who call themselves as Christains. I do not now nor have I ever, laid claim to believing that I have the corner on what good Christian behavior is. My views come entirely from what I believe to be the truth for my life. Also, know that it has not been beyond me to address, recant, and apologize for statements that I have posted that were just plain wrong and hurtful to members of this board, namely the LaClairs.

As a Christian I try to live my life by a set of standards that are in keeping with my faith and convictions. Some of those standards include integrity, and honesty (which are not exclusive to Christians). By openly declaring my faith and setting a higher standard of living for myself, I have willingly and knowingly opened up the way I live to the examination by others.

Having said that I would like to now address the issue.

I do not believe that Mr. P is an inherently bad or evil person. I do however believe that as a teacher Mr. P. is held to a higher standard because of the responsibilities of his job. I also believe that as an open Christian the bar to that standard is even higher. Mr. P has made some serious mistakes both in and out of the classroom that have called into question his honesty and integrity. Undoubtedly he has made some very poor judgments and errors.

The problem for me with this issue is not so much with his classroom teaching. I know that there are those of you who will disagree with me and argue that his teaching is the problem. But I am not speaking of his teaching methods directly. The reason I say that is because, I am giving Mr. P. and his "teaching" ability the benefit of doubt. The reason I am is because 1) I do not know the man and have never sat in one of his classes. 2) I recognize that he may have gone to far with his opinions but I cannot speak to his intent in the classroom. I can say, o.k., he used really poor judgment, made a mistake, took the conversation to far, got to involved and lost sight of who is audience was, etc, etc.

At issue for me is his judgment, his response, his lack of straight forwardness, and his refusal to take ownership for things he said once he was presented with Matthew's letter, and during his meeting with Matthew. Also, his response in the paper, and before the board.

What was probably the first of his poor judgments were the actual statements he made in class. Bad, perhaps, depending on who you ask. Mr. P. could've corrected that issue from the get go. Once Matthew's concerns were brought to him he could've boned up, admitted his mistake, apologized, and gone on the with school year. Yes, it is difficult to admit to our mistakes but the integrity of our character demands it of us.

Perhaps fear of losing his job made him defensive who knows. I do know that as hard as admitting fault it is, it is much harder living with the weight of denial on your back.

Following his meeting with Matthew, Mr. P has had many opportunities to step up to the plate and has not. Perhaps a few of the reasons for this is because he is now being lead by his union in an effort to protect his job, is lawyered up and being advised not to admit to nothing. To me, these reasons should not prevent Mr. P from doing what he should know in his heart to be the right thing to do.

When I listened to this latest recording, I surprisingly was not shocked. I was angry. I was angry not only at Mr. P but also Mr. Somma, because he was a party in that meeting. Mr. Somma also knew the truth yet has remained silent and allowed one of his students to be thought a liar, threatened, walk in fear for his safety, and forced to remain in a hostile environment, all for the sake of protecting the school and a teacher.

The actions (or lack of action) of the Kearny Board of Education, Mr. Somma, Mr. Lindenfelser. as well as Mr.P , following the classroom issues, are reprehensible.

While I can sympathize with Christians in defense of Mr. P, I cannot excuse or accept their behavior, which has been less than humbling, Their brother made a mistake. Love the sinner, hate the sin. By all means they should stand up for their religious rights, when they are being threatened. But, in my opinion the defense of a teacher based purely on his religious affiliation is just wrong. They should be demanding that Mr. P and the school board to take ownership of this issue. They should be aware that Christians are subject to making mistakes, and yes, even breaking the law. Being a Christian does not exclude anyone from falling victim to their own human nature.

It saddens me greatly to read what those who proclaim the Christian faith have written on this board. I feel to a great extent they have made non-believers look like saints.

It saddens me yet again, that these same people have declared the LaClairs liars because of what they presumed was a lack of proof. How sad it is that Paul LaClair has had to provide proof to anyone that he son was not a liar.

I'm sure even with the release of this latest recording, which we all could have done with out hearing, that there will be those die hards who will continue to place blame on the LaClairs. It's a sad fact of life that some people are just ignorant.

I suspect that there are many Christian who feel the same as I do but have remained silent for fear they would only be fueling the hatred.

Now that this latest recording has been released, I pray that the board will listen carefully and decide that it is time to do the right thing. They need to step out of their comfort zone and follow their common sense. Just because they are represented by a lawyer doesn't mean he is right, or that they have to take his advice. They should also keep mind that they represent the people of Kearny by way of election and will not be immune to paying the price for this mess in the next school board election.

Being a Christian in no way, shape, or form means we are to turn a blind eye to truth. Even if it pains us.

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Christians in general are deterred by facts.  They don't like facts.  Facts are provable, unlike their faith, which they expect everyone to buy into.

How sad for Mr. P that he is finally exposed for the bigot he really is.

The only thing that's sad in this situation is the number of lost souls that are posting on KOTW, those that deny God, those that stubbornly insist that if they can't see God, he doesn't exist. Your ignorance is what is truly sad.

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Christians in general are deterred by facts.  They don't like facts.  Facts are provable, unlike their faith, which they expect everyone to buy into.

How sad for Mr. P that he is finally exposed for the bigot he really is.

And hypocrite.

And coward.

And liar.

And bully.

And a man to whom the facts do not matter, only what he has chosen to believe.

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Apologies if this is a second reply to the same post. The manner in which new posts appear at KOTW sometimes gives me a strong impression of odd delays and perhaps a cyber-limbo. Mr. Moderator, if the earlier reply still exists, feel free to post that one and let this one remain unpublished.

For months, at least a few writers on KOTW were taunting me to produce the recor[d]ings of the meeting in principal Somma's office on October 10, 2006, apparently thinking we did not have them. They are now online at:

http://thecanessacorner.blogspot.com/2007/...wicz-first.html

Thanks to you and/or Matt for making those available.

And no, the Observer is not the only news organization that has them.

Good.

These recordings support our charges to the letter.

No, they don't.

Throughout the meeting, Mr. Paszkiewicz denied many of the statements he made,

The recording does not show that (barring taking statements out of context).

used his authority to attempt to intimidate and bully a sixteen-year-old,

Oh, boo-hoo!

The 16-year-old put the teacher's job in jeopardy with an exaggerated and frivolous complaint without ever addressing the issue directly with the teacher, if Matthew's statements during the meeting are to be believed.

interrupted him on numerous occasions,

More on that later, once I break down the conversation in more detail.

used several ploys (appeal to sympathy, "I thought we were friends," etc.) to break the student down

Uh--have you tried putting yourself in Paszkiewicz's shoes? The meeting reflects that he asked students to let him know if classroom conversations resulted in upset; Matthew affirmed that (he wasn't lying about it, was he?).

Yet he writes a letter of complaint to the principal.

Wouldn't you be wondering what was going on if you were in Paszkiewicz's shoes?

The meeting seems to have been called in order to try to achieve some resolution, but that does not appear to have been Matthew's purpose in attending the meeting. It appears that his true agenda was to try to use his recording device to catch Paszkiewicz in a lie.

I don't think he succeeded, but that is a matter for debate.

In any case, letting Matthew know the potential consequences of his actions was perfectly appropriate, even if protective daddy construes is as a ploy.

and in the end when confronted with the in-class recordings, said "you got the big fish" --- all just as we said all along.

The recording shows that the "fish" comment, along with many others, has been taken out of context by the LaClairs.

You, Paul, have used the comment as a form of proof that Paszkiewicz admitted having been caught.

In fact, the comment follows in line with Paszkiewicz's view of Matthew's motives, which is a theme of his comments throughout.

Okay if I call that a ploy of yours?

All the while, Mr. Somma, who should have been seeing to it that the meeting was conducted fairly, let it happen.

Paszkiewicz didn't say anything unreasonable, so far as I can tell; certainly nothing that Somma should unquestionably have brought to an end. If Paszkiewicz had brow-beaten Matthew over the potential consquences, then maybe Paul would have a point. As it is, it looks like exaggerated fatherly concern, perhaps in part stemming from the Mr. LaClair's experiences with courtroom decorum.

No doubt Mr. Paszkiewicz's apologists will not be deterred by the facts.

Continuing the poisoning of the well, eh? Okay if I call that a ploy?

The recording of the meeting shows Matthew committing the same types of inaccuracies that have been duplicated by daddy at KOTW. That is, taking statements out of context, and imputing meanings on the words of others.

They haven't been so far, and I doubt they will be now. However, those are the facts.

And again, thanks for any part you played in making the recordings available.

Please be advised that the information can and will be used against you. <_<

Mr. Paszkiewicz's conduct in that meeting is shameful.

No, it wasn't.

We do get a glimpse of deception on Matthew's part, however.

He says he recorded the class proceedings because he didn't feel "safe."

He says he feels "safe" in the meeting with Somma and Paszkiewicz.

He records that meeting even though he supposedly feels "safe."

Why should he say that he feels safe in the meeting if it weren't to allay any suspicion that he was recording the meeting?

That pales beside what appears to be Matthew's rampant tendency to take comments out of context and place his own meaning on them on the other hand.

****

Paul, it seems that the meeting participants had copies of Matthew's letter to the school and perhaps a document produced by Matthew that included alleged quotations of Mr. Paszkiewicz.

Could those perhaps be made publicly available? It would serve the public to be able to place the comments at the meeting in their fullest context. In particular, it would be useful to see where Matthew placed quotation marks, given that he had the benefit of taped copies of classroom discussions.

It's hard to hear where quotation marks are placed in an audio discussion.

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The only thing that's sad in this situation is the number of lost souls that are posting on KOTW, those that deny God, those that stubbornly insist that if they can't see God, he doesn't exist. Your ignorance is what is truly sad.

What is ignorant is to imagine that you can put God into the narrow little box of any one human mind.

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I would like to address the recently released recordings of the meeting that took place between, Mr. Somma, Matthew LaCliar, and Mr. P. But before doing so I'd like to remind you from where it is my perspective comes from.

As many of you have been regulars on this board know, I am Christian. I have made no secret of that the fact and have on a few occasions acted on my faith by putting into words what I felt was proper behavior of those who call themselves as Christains. I do not now nor have I ever, laid claim to believing that I have the corner on what good Christian behavior is. My views come entirely from what I believe to be the truth for my life. Also, know that it has not been beyond me to address, recant, and apologize for statements that I have posted that were just plain wrong and hurtful to members of this board, namely the LaClairs.

As a Christian I try to live my life by a set of standards that are in keeping with my faith and convictions. Some of those standards include integrity, and honesty (which are not exclusive to Christians). By openly declaring my faith and setting a higher standard of living for myself, I have willingly and knowingly opened up the way I live to the examination by others.

Having said that I would like to now address the issue.

I do not believe that Mr. P is an inherently bad or evil person. I do however believe that as a teacher Mr. P. is held to a higher standard because of the responsibilities of his job. I also believe that as an open Christian the bar to that standard is even higher.  Mr. P has made some serious mistakes both in and out of the classroom that have called into question his honesty and integrity. Undoubtedly he has made some very poor judgments and errors.

The problem for me with this issue is not so much with his classroom teaching. I know that there are those of you who will disagree with me and argue that his teaching is the problem.

Actually, I think the LaClairs would agree with you. I know I do--the real problem was his reaction to having the inappropriate teaching methods revealed to him, as you stated below. If at that point, Paszkiewicz would have simply apologized, honestly said that he didn't mean to overstep his bounds, etc., then it would have ended right there. Matthew and his father seemed very willing to drop the issue entirely, had Paszkiewicz and the Board reacted appropriately to the situation.

Also, realize yet another reason for putting Paszkiewicz to a high standard as a teacher in this situation--the class was US history! If there is any a class whose teacher is expected to understand the Constitution of the United States of America and how he acted outside of it, it's that one. His apparent ignorance of it was astonishing.

But I am not speaking of his teaching methods directly. The reason I say that is because, I am giving Mr. P. and his "teaching" ability the benefit of doubt.  The reason I am is because 1) I do not know the man and have never sat in one of his classes. 2) I recognize that he may have gone to far with his opinions but I cannot speak to his intent in the classroom. I can say, o.k., he used really poor judgment, made a mistake, took the conversation to far, got to involved and lost sight of who is audience was, etc, etc.

At issue for me is his judgment, his response, his lack of straight forwardness, and his refusal to take ownership for things he said once he was presented with Matthew's letter, and during his meeting with Matthew. Also, his response in the paper, and before the board.

What was probably the first of his poor judgments were the actual statements he made in class. Bad, perhaps, depending on who you ask. Mr. P. could've corrected that issue from the get go. Once Matthew's concerns were brought to him he could've boned up, admitted his mistake, apologized, and gone on the with school year. Yes, it is difficult to admit to our mistakes but the integrity of our character demands it of us. 

Perhaps fear of losing his job made him defensive who knows. I do know that as hard as admitting fault it is, it is much harder living with the weight of denial on your back.

Following his meeting with Matthew, Mr. P has had many opportunities to step up to the plate and has not. Perhaps a few of the reasons for this is because he is now being lead by his union in an effort to protect his job, is lawyered up and being advised not to admit to nothing. To me, these reasons should not prevent Mr. P from doing what he should know in his heart to be the right thing to do.

When I listened to this latest recording, I surprisingly was not shocked. I was angry. I was angry not only at Mr. P but also Mr. Somma,  because he was a party in that meeting. Mr. Somma also knew the truth yet has remained silent and allowed one of his students to be thought a liar, threatened, walk in fear for his safety, and forced to remain in a hostile environment, all for the sake of protecting the school and a teacher.

The actions (or lack of action) of the Kearny Board of Education, Mr. Somma, Mr. Lindenfelser. as well as Mr.P , following the classroom issues, are reprehensible.

While I can sympathize with Christians in defense of Mr. P, I cannot excuse or accept  their behavior, which has been less than humbling, Their brother made a mistake. Love the sinner, hate the sin.  By all means they should stand up for their religious rights, when they are being threatened. But, in my opinion the defense of a teacher based purely on his religious affiliation is just wrong. They should be demanding that Mr. P and the school board to take ownership of this issue. They should be aware that Christians are subject to making mistakes, and yes, even breaking the law. Being a Christian does not exclude anyone from falling victim to their own human nature.

It saddens me greatly to read what those who proclaim the Christian faith have written on this board. I feel to a great extent they have made non-believers look like saints.

I appreciate the subtle irony in that statement--just wanted you to know. :wub:

It saddens me yet again, that these same people have declared the LaClairs liars because of what they presumed was a lack of proof. How sad it is that Paul LaClair has had to provide proof to anyone that he son was not a liar.

I'm sure even with the release of this latest recording, which we all could have done with out hearing, that there will be those die hards who will continue to place blame on the LaClairs. It's a sad fact of life that some people are just ignorant.

I suspect that there are many Christian who feel the same as I do but have remained silent for fear they would only be fueling the hatred.

Now that this latest recording has been released, I pray that the board will listen carefully and decide that it is time to do the right thing. They need to step out of their comfort zone and follow their common sense. Just because they are represented by a lawyer doesn't mean he is right, or that they have to take his advice. They should also keep mind that they represent the people of Kearny by way of election and will not be immune to paying the price for this mess in the next school board election.

Being a Christian in no way, shape, or form means we are to turn a blind eye to truth. Even if it pains us.

Very well said, and a pleasure to read. :wub:

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The only thing that's sad in this situation is the number of lost souls that are posting on KOTW, those that deny God, those that stubbornly insist that if they can't see God, he doesn't exist. Your ignorance is what is truly sad.

This coming from someone who so fervently denies that which _can_ be seen in favor of that which he cannot. How ironic it is to see people like you who accept God and reject things like evolution at the same time.

Which is more absurd? To assume the existence of something with no evidence, or to not assume the existence of something with no evidence?

What's sad about not making assumptions about supernatural things? Do you really think yourself so much better for making completely baseless guesses on that subject, and then pretending to be certain of them? You are literally looking down your nose at anyone who isn't as willing to speculate about supernatural entities as you. For some crazy reason, you feel that putting certainty into speculation on an unknowable subject makes you superior. And that attitude is what's sad.

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Throughout the meeting, Mr. Paszkiewicz denied many of the statements he made

The recording does not show that (barring taking statements out of context).

You have got to be kidding me. What recording were you listening to?

Example: Paszkiewicz flatly denied that he ever said he would beat a son of his who refused to go to church (I can't remember if Matthew mentioned when questioning him the child's age being 12). Matthew literally questioned him about using the exact words "break his backside," and Paszkiewicz denied using them.

Here's what the class recording catches him saying:

"...if my kid is age 12, and he's telling me 'Dad, I appreciate your time and effort, but I've decided in my 12 years of wisdom that I'm going to stop going to church.' After I break his backside, we're going to have a little attitude adjustment, he's going to get in the car with the rest of the family and go to church. You're entitled to your own opinion, but you still gotta do as your old man tells you to do, or suffer the consequences." --David Paszkiewicz (emphasis added)

David Paszkiewicz is a confirmed liar. There is no two ways about it--not only did he lie about this statement, but what a statement it is! 'Obey or get beaten' is Paszkiewicz's policy on child rearing--I dare say that advocating child abuse (remember, not even a swat or something, his word was "breaking" a child's backside) so blatantly could merit a call to CPS on top of everything else.

The 16-year-old put the teacher's job in jeopardy with an exaggerated and frivolous complaint without ever addressing the issue directly with the teacher,

Matthew said that he went 'past' the teacher because he felt he couldn't trust him. Listen to the recording--Paszkiewics proves him 100% RIGHT about this--without the recordings, he likely would have gotten away with denying a lot of the things he said! It sure sounded like Somma was leaning toward believing Paszkiewicz during the meeting.

I'm going to stop responding to your nonsense before the stupid starts to become physically painful. :wub:

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At issue for me is his judgment, his response, his lack of straight forwardness, and his refusal to take ownership for things he said once he was presented with Matthew's letter, and during his meeting with Matthew.

Try to put yourself in Paszkiewicz's shoes for a moment.

1) Matthew is working from a recording of things said weeks prior, and even then he can't get his facts straight (pending my review of 2 out of three CDs, though the context suggests that the Sept 14 CD is by far the most relevant). That should be clear to you if you compare the charges against Paszkiewicz against what was actually said.

2) Can you be specific about how Paszkiewicz wasn't straightforward? He affirmed without hesitation that religious issues were discussed in class. His objection, it seems to me, was to the characterization of his remarks as "preaching"--and it is in precisely the context of preaching that the "you belong in hell" quotation as used--which is out of context.

Also, his response in the paper, and before the board.

That's safely lacking in specifics ...

What was probably the first of his poor judgments were the actual statements he made in class. Bad, perhaps, depending on who you ask. Mr. P. could've corrected that issue from the get go. Once Matthew's concerns were brought to him he could've boned up, admitted his mistake, apologized, and gone on the with school year.

Matthew's concerns could have been brought to Mr. Paszkiewicz when Matthew first objected.

Instead of objecting, Matthew encouraged religious discussion with his questions, took the results, and quoted without appropriate context to various degrees and perhaps just inaccurately in other instances.

Yes, it is difficult to admit to our mistakes but the integrity of our character demands it of us.

Would you admit a mistake that you had not made?

If yes, what does it say about the integrity of your character?

Case in point: "(evolution and the Big Bang) require the same degree of faith as a belief in Creationism."

That was not one of Paszkiewicz's claims, going by the Dranger transcript of 9-14. But he should apologize for it?

Perhaps fear of losing his job made him defensive who knows. I do know that as hard as admitting fault it is, it is much harder living with the weight of denial on your back.

Patty, maybe you've made a mistake by not paying sufficient attention to the evidence.

Following his meeting with Matthew, Mr. P has had many opportunities to step up to the plate and has not. Perhaps a few of the reasons for this is because he is now being lead by his union in an effort to protect his job, is lawyered up and being advised not to admit to nothing. To me, these reasons should not prevent Mr. P from doing what he should know in his heart to be the right thing to do.

Apologize for ________________________________ ?

You fill in the blank. Then let's see if the evidence supports your notion.

When I listened to this latest recording, I surprisingly was not shocked. I was angry. I was angry not only at Mr. P but also Mr. Somma,  because he was a party in that meeting. Mr. Somma also knew the truth yet has remained silent and allowed one of his students to be thought a liar, threatened, walk in fear for his safety, and forced to remain in a hostile environment, all for the sake of protecting the school and a teacher.

Huh? What "truth" did Somma supposedly know?

The actions (or lack of action) of the Kearny Board of Education, Mr. Somma, Mr. Lindenfelser. as well as Mr.P , following the classroom issues, are reprehensible.

They should have ________________________________________

You fill in the blank and we'll see if we can make any real sense of your answer.

While I can sympathize with Christians in defense of Mr. P, I cannot excuse or accept  their behavior, which has been less than humbl[e], Their brother made a mistake.

Made your own humble determination of that, did you? :wub:

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The only thing that's sad in this situation is the number of lost souls that are posting on KOTW, those that deny God, those that stubbornly insist that if they can't see God, he doesn't exist. Your ignorance is what is truly sad.

But if heaven is full of people like you where's the payoff?

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The only thing that's sad in this situation is the number of lost souls that are posting on KOTW, those that deny God, those that stubbornly insist that if they can't see God, he doesn't exist. Your ignorance is what is truly sad.

Hello again "Patriot."

Who said anything about denying God?

Just because I don't believe in Jesus doesn't mean that I don't believe in a God.

You see, you Christians tend to be so oblique to any view but your own. As if your version of history is the right one, and your holy book is the only one that is true.

How sad for you my ignorant "Patriot." It's your soul that is lost, since you don't follow the one true God. But there is still time to renounce the cult you have joined and see the world with real eyes.

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Guest Dingo Dave

Dear Bryan,

Have you taken complete leave of your senses?

I just listened to that recording and clearly witnessed David P. sidestep, tapdance, equivocate, tell outright lies, attempt to shift responsibility, and display obvious passive/aggressive behaviour in an effort to intimidate Matthew into softening some of his accusations. He interrupted Mattew constantly, and partially succeeded in his efforts not to answer the questions posed to him. In short, he behaved dishonestly and unethically.

It was only when Matthew produced the CDs at the very end that the adults in the room finally realised the gravity of the situation, and decided that they should stop the meeting immediately for fear of stepping deeper into the morass in which they were already embroiled.

In my opinion, this recording absolutely vindicates the LaClair's concerns that if these things had not been meticulously documented, the whole affair would have been deceitfully and cynically swept under the bureaucratic/theocratic rug.

pbrown64 summed it up very nicely when she wrote; "Being a Christian in no way, shape, or form means we are to turn a blind eye to truth. Even if it pains us."

David Paszkiewicz is a slave to his own darkest fears, and I don't doubt that he sincerely believes that all non-Christians will be condemned to a horrendous Hell because of their unbelief. He therefore feels that it is his duty to warn his fellow humans about their gruesome fate which, in his mind, awaits all unbelievers. In stating that all non-Christians were destined for eternal torture, he would definitely have made any thoughtful non-Christian students feel unsafe in his class. How unsafe would you feel if you had been led to believe (by a popular authority figure) that you and several BILLION other human beings were destined to be burned alive forever if you didn't view the universe in just the same way that he does?

He has been promoting a way of thinking which calls for such an extreme level of physical violence to be inflicted upon all non-subscribers, that in any other context, it and he, would be roundly condemned and excoriated by his neighbours and by society at large.

If David P. had told MY son that he deserves to be condemned to eternal suffering for any reason whatsoever, then I'm not sure that I would have been nearly as restrained and reasonable as the LaClair family has been throughout this whole ordeal.

When I contemplate the unbridled arrogance of the man, such that he would even consider saying such a thing to a class of impressionable young people, it makes my blood boil.

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Pbrown64, thank you for a thoughtful and wise post. I do wish more of our co-religionists could see this whole schemozzle for what it is -- not an attack Christianity, but a simple case of bad judgment (followed by worse judgment) on the part of one of our brothers.

We Christians are indebted to the Constitution for a large part of the vitality of our institutional faiths. The separation of church and state works to our advantage by creating a climate in which free and non-coerced expressions of faith are possible . We have at least as big a stake in protecting the Constitution as our non-Christian neighbors.

Leigh Williams

Austin, Texas

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No doubt Mr. Paszkiewicz's apologists will not be deterred by the facts. They haven't been so far, and I doubt they will be now. However, those are the facts. Mr. Paszkiewicz's conduct in that meeting is shameful.

I wouldn't be too sure about that. Although I do not consider myself to be an apologist, I definitely have been reserving my opinion pending hearing Mr. P's side of the story, which never came. The recordings clarify things significantly. So ....

1. Mr. P conducted himself poorly in the classroom.

2. Mr. P conducted himself poorly in the meeting (not ready to skewer Mr. Somma, considering it was his first month on the job, but I think he could have handled the matter much better).

3. How has Mr. P conducted himself with respect to Matthew in school since the meeting?

Y'know, hearing the recordings actually made me angrier that the administration hasn't done more to protect Matthew from the abuse - almost to the point where - in my opinion - the administration is complicit in the bullying he has endured (a notion that is surely not lost on you or your private attorney). One dad to another - I'm sorry for what your son's been going through.

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Bryan

You are still lying and splitting hairs.

"Taken out of context"? You have the entire context right before you but you still deny what was said?

Paszkiewicz stated repeatedly that his students were asking him what the Bible had to say. On the recordings none of the students ever asked what the Bible said, nor did P state, "This is what the Bible says." and if he did he would still be wrong because he is giving his interpretation of the Bible.

I once saw a poster that said "Jesus came to take away our sins, not our brains."

You are either completely clueless or completely dishonest.

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Hearing about Matthew's exploits in KHS so far, I find it difficult to believe that all of this would have ended with an apology.

I really wish Paul would sue already instead of holding Kearny hostage as he seems to want to do. Maybe he'll get lucky and get a judge like the one on the Anna Nicole Smith case. Then Matthew can put on that "I'm so sad that I had to do this for The Constitution" face of his as the judge weeps.

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Dear Bryan,

Have you taken complete leave of your senses?

I just listened to that recording and clearly witnessed David P. sidestep, tapdance, equivocate, tell outright lies, attempt to shift responsibility, and display obvious passive/aggressive behaviour in an effort to intimidate Matthew into softening some of his accusations. He interrupted Mattew constantly, and partially succeeded in his efforts not to answer the questions posed to him. In short, he  behaved dishonestly and unethically.

It was only when Matthew produced the CDs at the very end that the adults in the room finally realised the gravity of the situation, and decided that they should stop the meeting immediately for fear of stepping deeper into the morass in which they were already embroiled. 

In my opinion, this recording absolutely vindicates the LaClair's concerns that if these things had not been meticulously documented, the whole affair would have been deceitfully and cynically swept under the bureaucratic/theocratic rug.

pbrown64 summed it up very nicely when she wrote; "Being a Christian in no way, shape, or form means we are to turn a blind eye to truth. Even if it pains us."

David Paszkiewicz is a slave to his own darkest fears, and I don't doubt that he sincerely believes that all non-Christians will be condemned to a horrendous Hell because of their unbelief. He therefore feels that it is his duty to warn his fellow humans about their gruesome fate which, in his mind, awaits all unbelievers. In stating that all non-Christians were destined for eternal torture, he would definitely have made any thoughtful non-Christian students feel unsafe in his class. How unsafe would you feel if you had been led to believe (by a popular authority figure) that you and several BILLION other human beings were destined to be burned alive forever if you didn't view the universe in just the same way that he does?

He has been promoting a way of thinking which calls for such an extreme level of physical violence to be inflicted upon all non-subscribers, that in any other context, it and he, would be roundly condemned and excoriated by his neighbours and by society at large.

If David P. had told MY son that he deserves to be condemned to eternal suffering for any reason whatsoever, then I'm not sure that I would have been nearly as restrained and reasonable as the LaClair family has been throughout this whole ordeal.

When I contemplate the unbridled arrogance of the man, such that he would even consider saying such a thing to a class of impressionable young people, it makes my blood boil.

Bryan is incapable of listening, and certainly incapable of evaluating the evidence objectively. He refuses to see the evidence from any perspective except that of his own twisted assumptions. Right now, he can't be reached with reasoned argument, because he is not coming from reason. He is coming from a mind made up in advance, and determined to reach the conclusions he wishes to reach. For example, the "boo hoo" in response to my comment that the teacher was engaged in bullying is a snotty response that overlooks the central fact: it is the teacher's conduct that is the central issue, not the student's response.

It is heartening to know that others have a similar reaction to mine when I heard this recording (the meeting in Al Somma's office). As you can imagine, my reaction as a parent may have been stronger than yours. It was like watching my son being walked through the looking glass toward the red queen. So my thanks to those who have written and confirmed what I've known all along.

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Apologies if this is a second reply to the same post.  The manner in which new posts appear at KOTW sometimes gives me a strong impression of odd delays and perhaps a cyber-limbo.  Mr. Moderator, if the earlier reply still exists, feel free to post that one and let this one remain unpublished.

Thanks to you and/or Matt for making those available.

And no, the Observer is not the only news organization that has them.

Good.

No, they don't.

The recording does not show that (barring taking statements out of context).

Oh, boo-hoo!

The 16-year-old put the teacher's job in jeopardy with an exaggerated and frivolous complaint without ever addressing the issue directly with the teacher, if Matthew's statements during the meeting are to be believed.

interrupted him on numerous occasions,

More on that later, once I break down the conversation in more detail.

Uh--have you tried putting yourself in Paszkiewicz's shoes?  The meeting reflects that he asked students to let him know if classroom conversations resulted in upset; Matthew affirmed that (he wasn't lying about it, was he?).

Yet he writes a letter of complaint to the principal.

Wouldn't you be wondering what was going on if you were in Paszkiewicz's shoes?

The meeting seems to have been called in order to try to achieve some resolution, but that does not appear to have been Matthew's purpose in attending the meeting.  It appears that his true agenda was to try to use his recording device to catch Paszkiewicz in a lie.

I don't think he succeeded, but that is a matter for debate.

In any case, letting Matthew know the potential consequences of his actions was perfectly appropriate, even if protective daddy construes is as a ploy.

The recording shows that the "fish" comment, along with many others, has been taken out of context by the LaClairs.

You, Paul, have used the comment as a form of proof that Paszkiewicz admitted having been caught.

In fact, the comment follows in line with Paszkiewicz's view of Matthew's motives, which is a theme of his comments throughout.

Okay if I call that a ploy of yours?

All the while, Mr. Somma, who should have been seeing to it that the meeting was conducted fairly, let it happen.

Paszkiewicz didn't say anything unreasonable, so far as I can tell; certainly nothing that Somma should unquestionably have brought to an end.  If Paszkiewicz had brow-beaten Matthew over the potential consquences, then maybe Paul would have a point.  As it is, it looks like exaggerated fatherly concern, perhaps in part stemming from the Mr. LaClair's experiences with courtroom decorum.

Continuing the poisoning of the well, eh?  Okay if I call that a ploy?

The recording of the meeting shows Matthew committing the same types of inaccuracies that have been duplicated by daddy at KOTW.  That is, taking statements out of context, and imputing meanings on the words of others.

They haven't been so far, and I doubt they will be now. However, those are the facts.

And again, thanks for any part you played in making the recordings available.

Please be advised that the information can and will be used against you.  :D

No, it wasn't.

We do get a glimpse of deception on Matthew's part, however.

He says he recorded the class proceedings because he didn't feel "safe."

He says he feels "safe" in the meeting with Somma and Paszkiewicz.

He records that meeting even though he supposedly feels "safe."

Why should he say that he feels safe in the meeting if it weren't to allay any suspicion that he was recording the meeting?

That pales beside what appears to be Matthew's rampant tendency to take comments out of context and place his own meaning on them on the other hand.

****

Paul, it seems that the meeting participants had copies of Matthew's letter to the school and perhaps a document produced by Matthew that included alleged quotations of Mr. Paszkiewicz.

Could those perhaps be made publicly available?  It would serve the public to be able to place the comments at the meeting in their fullest context.  In particular, it would be useful to see where Matthew placed quotation marks, given that he had the benefit of taped copies of classroom discussions.

It's hard to hear where quotation marks are placed in an audio discussion.

Well of course: Matthew was supposed to be put in his place at the meeting. Any other outcome is unacceptable. Problem is, having correctly predicted the behavior of several adults in positions of authority over him, Matthew had them headed off to the point that they now look foolish and worse. He outsmarted and outmaneuvered them. And oh, how you hate it!

That's not the outcome you wanted, Bryan, so you have to solidify your assumptions and re-work the facts around them. You may continue to see Mr. Paszkiewicz as the victim here, but reasonable people do not. He thought he would put the student in his place, but that's not how it is turning out.

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