Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Op-Ed: Open letter, closed minds

| October 15, 2021 1:00 AM

"An Open Letter to the People of North Idaho," published in the Friday, Oct. 8 edition of the Coeur d'Alene Press, was signed by many accomplished local luminaries and community leaders. In it, they chastised those of us who are engaged in a robust political argument for Conservative local and regional reform.

These civically minded signatories, each of whom has performed many good works on behalf of our community, have together produced a letter that is utterly closed-minded in its interpretation of recent controversies.

Populism is always ugly, because "we the people" are not as polished as are the established institutional and business leaders among us. Successful politicians, administrators and executives by their very nature have mastered the subtleties of managing people within their own professional culture.

Such leadership is oriented at making any organization more than the sum of its parts. I acknowledge the benefits of having seasoned management at the helm of many of our institutions and organizations, at least in normal times.

Such leaders instinctively keep the proverbial ship of state from rocking too disconcertingly. Smooth operations make for effective governance and profitable commerce.

However, the signatories of this "Open Letter" are just as parochial in their outlook as are any other homogeneous collection of individuals. While they are each distinct in their personalities and areas of expertise, they all share the qualities of successful managers.

It is this common outlook that produces a reflexive resistance when common citizens become too loud in their demands. Members of the public may be earnest, these leaders admit. However, commoners lack the patience and perspective that only real leaders such as themselves can provide.

This condescension was on full display in the recent Coeur d'Alene Press "Meet the Candidates" online forums, particularly among the candidates for the Board of Education in School District 271.

Lisa May, Leslie Swingrover and Rebecca Smith all talked the talk and walked the walk of institutional educational leadership. Their messages were grounded in stability and deep experience within the rarified world of educational management.

In contrast, Allie Anderton, Lesli Bjerke and Glen Campbell seemed practically rustic in their straightforward lack of polish. Instead of stability, these candidates expressed a passion to save our schools from what they have become under the stewardship of establishment leaders like May, Swingrover and Smith.

Were we in normal times, then the Open Letter would speak wisdom. These are not normal times! This is precisely what the establishment candidates and Open Letter signatories simply do not understand.

Our whole culture, at every level, is being challenged by a Leftist minority who is engaged in nothing less than a revolution from above. This is happening here in our region, just as it is everywhere else in the U.S.

We who are traditional Americans are being forced to engage in nothing less than a civic war for the very soul of our culture. As silence is assent, we are loudly and resolutely exercising our Constitutional rights in an almost Quixotic hope to preserve our very freedom.

This moment demands passion more than experience and moral clarity more than technical knowledge. I enthusiastically endorse Allie Anderton, Lesli Bjerke and Glen Campbell for School Board, along with anyone else for any office who is committed to Conservative reform and to resisting the Woke Utopians.

• • •

In Maine and then Idaho, Ralph K. Ginorio has taught the history of Western Civilization to high school students for nearly a quarter century. He is an “out-of-the-closet” Conservative educator with experience in special education, public schools and charter schools, grades 6-12. He has lived in Coeur d’Alene since 2014. Email: rginorio@cdapress.com

Recent Headlines