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Defending My “Hate” Blog Post

I just thought I should take a moment to defend my previous post about an incident that happened at school last week. Apparently, the title alone was offensive to some (well, at least one). When I went in for my monthly meeting with my supervisor, he had a copy of it on his desk. So someone must have sent it to him. His only real concern was the title, “Hate Is Alive and Well in Bartlett, Illinois”, because it suggests Bartlett is racist. I could have just as easily substituted any other city, state or country… but the fact is, the post was about a specific event in a specific place. Racism IS alive and well in every community… we can pretend it doesn’t exist, but it does.

Whether spray painting the N-word was ‘just a prank’, a joke, done out of stupidity, ignorance or actual hate doesn’t matter. It symbolizes hate. It has the potential to cause fear and anger in those that are faced with it.

Did I suggest that all of Bartlett or Bartlett High School is racist? Absolutely not. But does hate exist? Does bullying exist? Most definitely. I felt I needed to post the incident because too often our rose colored glasses allow us to ignore problems that continue to exist. My blog is about my life, my experiences and my opinions and I think I have the right to share.

One of the main reasons I felt the original post was so relevant, was a discussion I had with a former student recently. He made a comment that nobody wanted or needed to hear about hate. He said everybody knows about it and it doesn’t need to be talked about anymore. I completely disagree and thought this was a good example of why we need to continue to educate about the need for sensitivity and acceptance.

The majority of responses I got were from alumni, appalled that this happened. Some shocked that this happened at their Alma Mater. Others were not surprised at all.

The school’s reaction has been positive, increasing security efforts to assure this doesn’t happen again.


Today’s Pic of the Day: CENSORED




HATE is alive and well in Bartlett, Illinois

I’m so furious right now I can barely see straight.

I have to back up a bit. As the Auditorium Manager at Bartlett High School, I have the never ending battle of keeping the auditorium secure. It’s supposed to be maintenance’s responsibility… backed up by our school’s dean’s assistants. With all the cut backs, man power is low and things like security have been left to suffer. At one point in my career at BHS, the auditorium was not allowed to be used if I was not present. Because it is used so much between 7 am and 11 pm and there is no money for overtime, I am only allowed 40 hours, much of which is spent either setting up events or running sound and lights for them. There are a lot of meetings that take place needing no direct technical help, mostly during the day. The auditorium is supposed to be locked up until it is used and then locked immediately after. So guess what is left unlocked all the time?

A few months ago, maintenance moved some rolling units out of my secure shop area and left them backstage. As a result, I had three 50’s style microphones stolen before I was aware the items had been left in the less-secure backstage. This past Monday, I came in and found things not as they should be, but the doors were locked. On Wednesday, I found out it was because a dean’s assistant found eight students smoking in the costume loft backstage.

Today topped it all. Someone must have found an unlocked door, found a can of spray paint and painted the N-word in huge letters across a four foot by eight foot set piece backstage.

Think hate doesn’t exist? Think again.


Today’s Pic of the Day: Snow finally hits the burbs of Chicago. (It was 53 degrees yesterday.)