It was a pretty cloudy morning...
Still sweatshirt weather for sure!
There was a brief, BRIEF moment of sunlight, so I was able to get a photo of Mary and me...
It was POURING down rain this morning when I woke up super early to talk to Rodney Wimberly Sr on his radio show - Good Morning South Arkansas.
I know you are thinking, "Why would someone in Arkansas care about what is happening in your little rural school district in Oregon?"
Well - this man has 4 grandkids in this small rural school district
and he stands by me.
Military recruiters have been welcomed here 19 times this year and even if they did not show up 19 times - they had an open invite to be here 19 times.
I have a problem with that.
You should too.
Jude came and walked with me a bit this morning - so there were three of us.
The start of a movement.
The Alice's Restaurant Anti-Masacree Movement.
Our view this morning down
The rain stopped!
It was NOT raining for the 1/2 hour protest by proxy this morning.
You too, can be in a different state and protest here.
You can be sleeping and protest here.
Just look on the top left of this page and learn how you may join me by proxy-protest.
If you want to show up in person - I am good with that too!
Oh my - but yesterday was a very blustery day!
This morning from 7:50am-8:20am - it was NOT raining. It was a little windy - but not bad.
Thanks for the company, Cathy!
For those that send in an email via the instructions up there on the left side of this page -- you too can join me on the protest by proxy beat!
I can always use more company.
You, too, can be here...
My new "protest by proxy" addition to my protest sign makes for a few challenges.
The sign is now about 4 foot tall and I am a little more than a foot taller that that!
So on a windy rainy gusty morning - it must be fun for an observer to see me juggling my umbrella and this sign that is like a sail in the wind!
Top it off with the thought that at each end of the block - I have to switch hands and umbrella and sign - so that when I walk in the opposite direction -the sign is facing the road.
You got it.
It is a challenge!
Keara survived a fall flat on her proxy face at the "switch-over" at the end of the block.
Look at her now though.
What a good proxy protester she was.
Glad to have you along
this morning Keara!
A wet and rather dreary day this morning.
At least I had company!
Kori was here by proxy and we both survived the rain just fine.
Back in the car with the windshield wipers going!
I learned that I get more waves and smiles in inclement weather.
I have learned a lot since I began my protest in January.
Yes I have!
Thanks, Kori, for being here with me today.
I appreciate it.
I am pretty sure it has been quite some time since Maya Frost was here at her high school alma mater.
She was certainly here this morning!
She got a bonus today as an angry woman stopped to tell me that she gets angry every time she sees on my protest beat.
I told her I was not angry at all.
The angry woman told me her daughter was in boot camp and her sister just retired from the military.
She assumed that I was protesting ALL military in general.
I pointed out that my sign does not say anything of that sort.
I do have some good people skills and used them this morning.
The angry woman calmed down and I gently told her my issues with the school and their lack of policies in regard to ALL recruiters and, danged, if she did not agree with me on a couple of items.
I introduced myself and we shook hands.
She repeated something that I have heard from other people in this area. There seems to be a generational way of thinking, that the military is the only way "out" of this
That means to me that these children are not being given enough information that can show a wide variety of
futures for them.
This saddens me.
It might sadden you too.
I am not saying these children are not smart nor motivated - I am saying they are being funneled towards the lowest common denominator by their parents and grandparents and the public schools lack of expectations.
How can I raise expectations for this small rural school district?
Let me see.....
Maya and me.
This morning Gene Wilcox walked up and down and up and down the sidewalk with me.
He was here by proxy and he is the first one to be on the newly updated sign.
Military recruiters, as of today, have been scheduled at this small rural school 19 times this year.
The school administration and the school board do not have any problem with that, as the superintendent said to me at the last school board meeting that he finds my sign disingenuous because the armed forces recruiters did not actually show up that many times.
As I have said repeatedly - "If they had shown up, they would have been welcomed."
You too can protest by proxy with me!
Just look down a couple of posts here on this site and it is explained.
I will be headed back to the school at lunch time today and the Air Force recruiter is scheduled on the calendar.
Do I know if he will show up?
I DO know he is scheduled on the calendar.
So if he does show up - the school is welcoming him.
It was almost crowded on my little protest beat this morning!
Jayson was with me by proxy this morning and he lucked out as it was not windy today and the smell of farm fresh manure stayed in the fields and did not waft our way.
Jude came and walked with us too!
If you would like to join me by proxy, here is what I am asking you to do....
I would like you to email this sample letter - which you are welcome to modify or re-word to this school district.
Let me know when you have done so and if you want, I will put your name on my protest sign until the next person does the same.
The email addresses:
To the Gaston public school superintendent and the principal of the high school:
I agree with Ms. Barb Smith that your school district should set a limit for all types of recruiters. An open policy for recruiters is problematic and invites abuse. The No Child Left Behind Act clearly states that military recruiters are allowed equal access to students.
I also agree with Ms. Smith that an adult recruiter who is visiting your school should not be allowed to ask for a student’s phone number or email address.
The No Child Left Behind Act permits recruiters to ask for any student’s contact information directly from any public secondary school and by law the school must give that to recruiters, providing the parent has not signed an opt-out form at the school.
As I understand it, at your school, the opt out form only applies to 11th and 12th graders. Your opt-out form must be updated to include all students in your secondary school, which includes grades 7-12.
I am looking forward to your reply,
Eric Canon joined my protest by proxy this morning.
The proxy part was a good deal for Eric this morning, as the farmers were spreading cow manure on their fields and the slight wind was aimed uphill....
The temperature was about 48º and sunny.
The mourning doves were vocal and there was a gorgeous fog lifting on the hills.
Thank you Eric.
You too can join me by proxy.
Ask me how!
I had company my morning protest today.
Kiira joined me by proxy and she enjoyed the 60º temperature and had a nice time.
Just like me.
You too can join me on my daily
Just email me at: changegaston/at/gmail.com.
I will tell you how you can join me from anywhere in the world.
Hope to meet you soon!