Saturday, February 13, 2016

School days

Apart from the fact that being a substitute teacher pays pretty well, the BIG advantage in continuing to work after the “normal” retirement age of 65 is that I frequently learn some interesting facts that I was not aware of previously.

Lat Friday, I supervised a media/communication class at a local high school. One of the class assignments was to read a short poem called “hangman”, and write a few paragraphs about the story.

The poem in question was written by a man named Maurice Ogden in 1951, right near the peak of the McCarthy era. Although “tail gunner Joe” is not mentioned in the poem, it’s entirely possible that it was an attack on McCarthyism, since the first use of the term “McCarthyism” appeared about a year earlier.

The poem can be read in its entirely at the link below:

the hangman poem

When I was still in high school (a LONG time ago) Peter, Paul & Mary released an album titled “See What Tomorrow Brings”. “Hangman” was the first song on side two of the album (remember those?), and you can listen to it again by clicking on the link below:

Peter, Paul and Mary in their younger days

Mixed in with the copies of the poem on the teacher’s desk was a printed copy of a speech recently given by retired Air Force Col Tom Moe, and brought to us (oddly enough) by the campaign committee of Republican John Kasich. The speech is loosely based on an article by anti-Nazi pastor Martin Niemoller in 1946.

When you listen to Col. Moe’s speech at the link below, you’ll realize that history is, indeed, repeating itself. I’m of the opinion that NONE of the Republican candidates for the Presidency are qualified for the job, but Donald J. Trump would be the absolute WORST choice.

Col. Tom Moe

Be sure to vote in November.

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