This week’s school board meeting had a packed agenda. Two of board member Carl Paladino’s resolutions sparked debate on truancy and nepotism, consumed by racial overtones. Seemingly with no regard to how his resolutions would be interpreted by the black community, Paladino didn’t parse his words.
On the issue of nepotism, Paladino continues to allege that hiring at the district is based on a “friends and family” network. The resolution had offensive racial undertones that seemed to cash dispersions on the minority members of school board and seemed to encourage white administrators to communicate their grudges and gossip to him or other board members personally.
At the same time he is eager to promote his friends — Kevin Eberle and James Weimer — to the position of superintendent, despite both white men being wildly under qualified relative to Dr. Pamela Brown, who he lambasted in a relentless months-long series of racially disparaging tirades, despite her degrees from Stanford, Harvard, and USC.
On the issue of truancy, Paladino tried to moderate statements he released earlier this week that seeks to criminalize bad parenting. His resolution would require the district to reach out to police upon every instance of reported bullying or misconduct. Paladino has also said that he wants to pursue parents criminally for a child’s’ chronic absenteeism.
Neither resolution passed, and require legal evaluation before being taken to their respective committees.
Political observers suspect that the resolutions are intended by Paladino to inflame racial tensions in the city. Observers suggest that Paladino has used race baiting political tactics successfully once before and intends to do so again. His selection of “dog-whistle” issues is a deliberate election strategy, they say.