Emma Sullivan versus Governor Brownback

Idiot Number One:  Kansas Governor Sam Brownback.
Idiot Number Two:   Governor Brownback’s communications director, Sherriene Jones-Sontag.
Idiot Number Three:  The  Shawnie Mission East High School Administration.
Idiot Number Four:  All the bloggers and Journalists and commentators who use the cliche about “Making a Mountain out of a Molehill.”  This does not rise to the level of “Molehill”.  

Emma is from Prairie Village, Kansas, and a senior at Shawnie Mission East High School. As part of a Youth in Government program, Emma traveled to Topeka, where she had to listen to a speech by Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, a right-wing ideologue who, Kansans like to joke, is transforming their state into “Brownbackistan.” What Emma knew about Brownback was that he had vetoed funding for the arts, leaving Kansas as the sole state without a state arts program. Emma Sullivan tweeted the following subversive thought: “Just made mean comments at gov brownback and told him he sucked, in person #heblowsalot.”  
But in the holy commonwealth of Kansas, no sparrow shall fall without the notice of state-paid social-media watchdogs. Brownback’s staff sniffed out this verbal terrorism, and called her principal, who cravenly called her in and tried to bully her into writing an apology. Emma refused, and her story swept the Web like a fire off the Kansas prairie. Official humorlessness and hypocrisy had transformed an American teenager (an earlier tweet: “Dear edward and jacob, this is the best night of my life. I want u. Love, ur future wife #breakingdawn”) into a global symbol of protest.
In response, the Governor brownbacked down: “My staff over-reacted to this tweet, and for that I apologize. Freedom of speech is among our most treasured freedoms.”
Both of Emma’s tweets are silly. (Among other things, Emma actually hadn’t told the Governor he sucked, alas.) But so what? Teen-agers are supposed to be silly. It is adults who should be mature. Surrounded by full-grown ninnyhammers, Emma has had to grow up overnight. Her latest tweet is: “I’ve decided not to write the letter but I hope this opens the door for average citizens to voice their opinion & to be heard! #goingstrong.”  

Yes, and some typical background on this issue, going from Black Armbands against Vietnam… to…

In the most recent case, Joseph Frederick, a latter-day Jeff Spicoli in Anchorage, Alaska, unveiled a banner with the thought-provoking “BONG HiTs” legend in front of Juneau-Douglas High School in 2002 just as the Olympic Torch was being carried past the school. School officials confiscated the banner and suspended him. Morse admitted that he just wanted to get his silly banner on television. But Chief Justice John Roberts, in an  opinion for the Court, parsed the statement with all the delicate irony of a HAL-9000 to conclude that it really meant “[Take] bong hits 4 Jesus,” or “bong hits [are a good thing],” thus transforming it into a danger to every student in Juneau: “schools may take steps to safeguard those entrusted to their care from speech that can reasonably be regarded as encouraging illegal drug use,” he wrote. (Justice Clarence Thomas, concurring, wrote separately to suggest that students have no First Amendment rights at all.) 

… Which was a ruling that annoyed me in its parsing of whether the speech meant anything or not.

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