Wasilla Candidate Says Some Children Not Worth Educating
There were some interesting revelations in a debate last week at the Greater Wasilla Chamber of Commerce candidates forum. The debate participants were the two Republicans who will square off in the August 28 primary for State House – Lynn Gattis and Mark Ewing. Democratic candidate Blake Merrifield, the only Democrat in the race, was not invited to this event.
There seemed to be few surprises – both are in favor of the Knik Arm Bridge, both are in favor of Pebble Mine, but soon Mr. Ewing distinguished himself. After talking about cutting the operating budget, he cited education as one of the problems. The Frontiersman reports:
“I got to be honest with you, I am not in favor of the No Child Left Behind Act,” Ewing said. “We are spending millions and millions of dollars educating children that have a hard time making their wheelchair move and, I’m sorry, but you’ve got to say, ‘no’ somewhere. We need to educate our children, but there are certain individuals that are just not going to benefit from an education.”
Children that have a hard time making their wheelchair move? Sorry, Stephen Hawking. According to the assessment of the gentleman from Wasilla, you just wouldn’t benefit from an education in the Wasilla public schools. And I wonder if Mr. Ewing would turn away a certain soon-to-be student in the school district named Trig Palin? I want to be a fly on the wall for that encounter.
Gattis, a sitting member of the Mat-Su Borough School Board, disagreed with Ewing’s assessment.
“We define ourselves by how we treat our elderly and our less fortunate and our special needs people,” she said.
Both candidates also support the controversial coal exploration project at Wishbone Hill in nearby Sutton.
“I think we should be supportive of business,” Gattis said. “It would be a shame to be a business and somebody didn’t like you and they made the choice to put you out of business.”
It would also be a shame to be a homeowner and have somebody “not like you” and they made the choice to make your property value tank, and covered your school and your town with coal dust. It would also be a shame to pollute salmon habitat that hasn’t even recovered from the last coal project almost a hundred years ago. That would also be “a shame.”
Our friend Mr. Ewing went even further.
“I love coal. I love the smell of burning coal in the morning,” he said. “I think that No. 1 coal seam we have up there is a gold mine.”
Mmmmmmm…. Fill your lungs with the sweet, sweet perfume. Ahhhh…. It just makes you want to breathe deep, beat your chest, and run around the block. Nothing like it.