Updated on October 14, 2011
My Two Cents
CJ is one of my closest friends and the attacks on him from the PTA of the middle school and the lack of support from the Army has me completely sick. I have so many thoughts running through my mind that are begging to get out. Let me very clear about the following to anyone from the Huntsville schools before I begin.
I am in no way expressing the opinion of CJ or Emily. I can not be intimidated by you calling my command as I am a Marine stationed in South Carolina. I will not have a problem finding a lawyer without “conflicts of intrest” to sue you back to the stone age should you try. I’m really not a hard guy to find should you feel froggy and want to try to bring me down.
With that out of the way, the Huntsville school district is out of line in ways that I can’t express on a family blog. Their contempt for the families of the children they are supposed to educate is beyond bounds. Their priority is to ensure every child has the chance to get an education that will carry them into the future and become productive members of American society. What are they teaching each and every child in their care when they ignore their own rules of order, bad mouth parents to students, and then run to the Army in the hopes of getting a man in trouble for having the fortitude to stand up for something he doesn’t agree with and then challenge the way he was treated? Really, what was this all about? Uniforms. A simple topic that can be easily debated and then decide once taking into account the opinion of the parents. Instead, this has come down to the ego of the PTA and Huntsville schools.
On 6 November, an “open letter” was posted to the Williams Middle School Uniform Policy Discussion Group. I’m going to reproduce portions letter here with emphasis added by me. You can also read the entire letter and discussion thread, including responses from CJ, on Facebook.
To begin, I am not willing to engage in any argument as this is not my intent. Please feel free to do or say anything in response or post this where ever you see fit. The reason I am refusing to delve into further debate with you is not that I am afraid of hearing your side but really as I am happy. Happy that I have a wonderful network of supportive friends and family. Happy that we have plenty of food and money. Most of all happy that my eyes are fully opened, so that I may see all sides and realize that everyone in there own mind is right! As I belive [sic] that we can speak freely and you are a man of reason I would like to say my peace. Before I begin realize that I am not anti-military these analogies are the best sceniros [sic] I can use to relate to you in the situation. Will people be angry at me for this e-mail? some may, but that is within their own selfs [sic].
This has moved beyond a uniform issue, this had became a personal vendetta between everyone. Mr. Grisham felt as if his Constitutional rights were violated. I ask you the question call me a liberal or tratior [sic] to our country if you must, but how many others rights were violated during interogations [sic]? How many of them were innocent? I am not ignorant to what goes on during war by any means. I know first hand how they rape and toture [sic] their male captives, I’ve seen the physical wounds that many civilians would not believe. The reality is we all still go in a broad sense by the Code of Hammarubbi and this transfered [sic] unto these issues. You feel as if your position is right and so does our end. Were you ignored? Yes I do think that some of the policy makers ignored your request to speak. When you got what you wanted an invitation to speak at our next board meeting it was not enough, as you recall I offered a chance to speak. I took it upon myself to read your statement to others, and I extended to Col. Pastorelli the same invitation to have you speak, yet this kept on.
I am sorry that you feel this way, and I hope you feel as if you achevied [sic] your personal victory. I feel empathy toward you, regarding the inner turmoil you are going through (yes i am refering [sic] to your PTSD) I know about the nightmares and terrors as I have seen them first hand from team members. I do not think you are crazy just a person with too many memories on their mind, I hope they fade in time.
As I reached out to you and your family willing to hear your side, I thought this would of been the turning point be enough yet it still was not. I think all sides were wrong. We the PTA had our hands tied. We could of allowed a debate on the issue but lets be honest, in the end result would it have changed Mrs. Williams mind? We all know the answer is a resounding NO ! We also know that there are real issues in this school such as disciplince [sic] that are not being addressed, why not advocate for the children and their saftey turn this into something constructive. I am blessed in the regard that my children will be returning to our Parchocial [sic] school bubble where my children and I can live in ignorance to situations such as these.Where there is not swearing in the hallways and the children do not hear and repeat what their parents would like to do to board members of the PTA. I am grateful to the military and the lives lost so that we may also remain in relative safety from terrorists.
Mr. Grisham you and your family will move on and so will we. I hope in time everyone can understand where the other side came from.
V.P. membership J.E. Williams Elementary School
I honestly can not believe that Jennifer Scott brought up CJ’s ongoing battle with PTSD and also claimed to have first hand knowledge of interrogations of terror suspects. Why even bring them up when discussing the issue of the PTA and uniforms? She purposefully attempted to draw CJ in for a deeper argument, which she claimed she didn’t want, by appealing to his emotions. I can only assume that she speaks for the entire PTA leadership by signing her official title with her letter.
I won’t go into great detail talking about all of the utter crap she said as everyone that responded to the letter on Facebook did a more than adequate job dealing with her, excuse me here, bullshit. I posted that portion to give everyone an idea of the caliber of people that are the “leadership” of the PTA.
CJ’s leadership owes him a huge apology. He has been called into many offices to be dressed down based upon baseless accusations from the PTA and school system in an attempt to ruin his career. They will claim they felt “threatened” by this decorated war hero (CJ won’t talk about it much but he received the Bronze Star), but in their hearts they hoped that causing problems between him and his leadership will make him back down. In a way, they won by forcing CJ and Emily to move the kids out of the district in order to protect their innocence, but they couldn’t leave it at that. Instead, they continue to make calls to CJ’s leadership in hopes of further tanking his career. CJ has given over 15 years of his life, he has given a good portion of his health, and his family has sacrificed more than I could being to explain to the United States only to have it stomped upon by women who could not stop themselves and their egos. CJ’s leadership had the chance to squash this and tell those women that they would not get involved in clearly civilian matters, but instead they overreacted prior to knowing any facts.
The end result of all of this is CJ and I, along with our other authors, have literally lost a place that we came to love. Many of you have read A Soldier’s Perspective since the beginning when only CJ wrote, welcomed me with open arms when I began writing, were with me via the blog while I was in Iraq, and helped me welcome both of my children to the world. Several of you have been welcomed into my own family with open arms and hearts. I can not believe that a few women with ego problems could not allow other opinions to be expressed and instead took it to a level that will result in everyone losing. CJ and I have already lost the blog, they will soon loose face in the public area thanks to the great bloggers and the other media outlets that are now picking up on the story.
In the end, CJ, I, and A Soldier’s Perspective will win out. I promise you that.