Messmer Needs To Exorcise The Devil Of Political Correctness
Talk about screwing up a feel good story.
For years, the Shorewood High School Football team underachieved. No, the truth is that it sucked - big time. Even after merging its team in 2000 with neighboring Messmer High School, the football program has been challenged. That's one of the reasons why it's so cool that the program is going to the WIAA Playoffs in 2012.
It's also a reason why it's so unfortunate that one griping Shorewood parent and the "always ever-so-perpetually offended and politically correct" Shorewood School Board would manufacture an October controversy.
As a public-private school partnership, you would think that their would be mutual respect between the parties. That is respect for the traditions and cultures of both schools. Unfortunately, respect only goes one way in the People's Republic of Shorewood.
In October of 2011, a Shorewood student won a contest designed a logo for the combined football team. The logo incorporated the logos of the respective schools: a greyhound for Shorewood, a Bishop's hat for Messmer. The logo has been in use for about a year.
A couple of weeks ago, one Shorewood parent (!) complained that there was a cross on the Bishop's hat. Oh, the horrors. In any event, the ever so politically correct and perpetually offended Shorewood School Board swung into action in record time and and demanded the removal of the offending logo.
Heaven forbid a single parent in Shorewood should have to sit in the stands and look at a cross on a football helmet.
Officials at Messmer describe the action as "hurtful" to the student who designed the logo, the football team and the students at Messmer. The Shorewood School Board obviously doesn't care. The new temporary logo is, well, lame in the extreme.
First, how pathetic that someone would complain about this in the first place. You must really be in a sad, dark place in your life to be offended by something like this. Hopefully, the students at Messmer can find a moment to pray for this whiner.
Second, why is it that in a public-private school partnership, the private school has to give up its traditions? This is not the Shorewood football team, it's the Messmer/Shorewood combined football team. Why isn't Messmer treated as an equal partner?
How far does this go? It's been a while since I've been inside Messmer, but I seem to remember religious objects in the building. Can Shorewood students not attend a joint rally at Messmer because they'd have to walk past a cross? In the future, will the Shorewood School Board accede to any logo which suggests that Messmer is a Catholic school? If they do, how long will it be before at least one Shorewood resident complains?
Perhaps they need to set up special sections in the stands. One for parents who might say a rosary or recite a small prayer during the game and the other for the handful of folks at Shorewood who are offended by this activity.
The bigger point is that this is just another skirmish in the war to try to drive religion from the public arena. Whether it's foolishness like this or efforts to ban religious-themed banners made by students from games or silly rulings saying that you can't hold a public school graduation in a church, it's way past time to define what it really means for government to "establish" a religion.
Here's hoping the United States Supreme Court injects some common sense into this area sometime soon.
And here's hoping that other private schools have learned a lesson about the dangers of a co-op partnership between a public and a private school. If you get in bed with a public school, it's likely you will wake up with political correctness cooties.
And once you get infected with political correctness, you might need an exorcism.