BREAKING: Federal court OKs ban of Ethnic Studies in Arizona

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Et tu Tashima?

Seriously, could not you have waited one more week to release this decision on the Ides of March?

“This ruling is the Dred Scott Decision for Mexican Americans.” – Richard Martinez

Here are some excerpts from the ruling that would have you think Judge A. Wallace Tashima would have ruled in the favor of justice for Latinos rather than justifying a clearly racist attack targeted at Latino students in Tucson.

“[the statute] unequivocally restricts the students’ right to receive information because it limits the scope of curricular material.”

Regarding the banning of books, there was the Monteiro case brought forth by an African-American student who wanted Mark Twain banned because of racial slurs.

“a student’s First Amendment rights are infringed when books that have been determined by the school district to have legitimate educational value are removed from a mandatory reading list because of threats of damages, lawsuits, or other forms of retaliation.”

So books COULD NOT be banned and the African-American student was forced to read the n-word over and over again. Yet books in Tucson written by Native and Mexican American authors remain banned for simply telling the truth of history.

“The Plaintiffs have an established right to receive information and ideas in the classroom… With these principles in mind, the Court turns to the Plaintiffs’ First Amendment claim.”

But then Tashima defers to the lowly ALJ, someone who hears liquor license and insurance claims all day, on this huge important issue.

“Defendants (Tom Horne)… describe 15-112 as being geared towards prohibiting courses that “promote racism.”… The narrow reading of the statute is in keeping with the ALJ’s interpretation of 15-112… This Court owes at least some deference to the ALJ’s sensible construction of the challenged statute.”

But then a few pages later, Tashima goes on to say:

The Court need not decide whether the ALJ’s ruling was a correct interpretation of the state-law question that he faced… the Court does conclude that the ALJ’s Decision was sufficiently detailed to provide notice of how the MAS program was deemed to violate 15-112.

Now how about Tom Horne’s CLEAR racist attack against Latinos in TUSD?

Although 15-112 is not facially discriminatory, it would still be unconstitutional if it was motivated by a discriminatory purpose.

At this point I have to say… WTF? The whole history of HB2281 and Tom Horne’s repeated attempts to ban MAS in TUSD… Huppenthal promising to “Stop La Raza”… how much more discriminatory purpose does Tashima need?

There are several aspects of the challenged actions that are concerning, or that at least “spark suspicion.”… Horne sought to “eliminate” the MAS program as early as 2007… he spoke at the relevant Arizona legislative committee hearing and stated unequivocally that his support for the bill arose from his concerns about the MAS program.”

And then there’s the violation of ex post facto:

Superintendent Horne issued his Finding of Violation on his last day in office, December 30, 2010. His Finding went into effection January 1, 2011, the same day that 15-112 went into effect. The timing of the Finding underscores Horne’s determination to do away with the MAS program, and it also means that Horne necessarily applied the statute retroactively…

How about Horne’s focus on only the Mexican Americans?

Also of concern is the fact that the Horne finding recognized that, in addition to MAS, two other TUSD ethnic studies programs “could be found in violation” of 15-112… This single-minded focus on terminating the MAS program, along with Horne’s decision not to issue findings against other ethnic studies programs, is at least suggestive of discriminatory intent.

Geez… ya think?

Then we get to the Remedy section… “Remedy” as in there was something wrong done:

With respect to the constitutional violation that has been established, the question remains of the proper remedy to be invoked.

The remedy is nothing changes.

The Plaintiffs motions get denied, and to make things even worse is the following:

The court sua sponte GRANTS summary judgement to Defendants on Plaintiffs’ equal protection and substantive due process claims.

Now keep in mind that all that has gone before Tashima was a quick 30 minute presentation by the attorney on a motion for summary judgement. There was no detailed hearing, no calling of witnesses or evidence. To this Judge Tashima basically says that what the ALJ found was good enough for him, and that on the issue of equal protection and due process, which WAS NOT THE ISSUE for this quick hearing, Judge Tashima is going to rule on it anyways!

What happened to American Justice?

What we have is that the teaching of all histories is OK except for Mexican American history and literature, and banning that is OK even though the Court could not ban a black kid from reading the n-word in his classes.

This is truly a sad day in America, and hopefully justice can be found at the Ninth Circuit.

Thanks for nothing Tashima. Luckily the history of internment camps is not banned even though that may arouse some resentment in some students, but who knows? Even that chapter in Arizona history may be banned soon, with Tashima’s ruling being used by Tom Horne to impose it.

On another note, there is no way anything near to MAS is coming back this Fall 2013 to TUSD. John Huppenthal still has the power to find any “culturally relevant courses” in violation, and they would have to be majorly watered-down for him to allow them. For any CRC classes to exist, Auggie Romero would have to make some major concessions with Huppenthal, and just like in their wrestling days, the Huppenthals have Romero in a headlock yelling out Uncle Tom.

 

 

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