Assistant principal who harassed pro-life protesters resigns

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The assistant principal of a Pennsylvania high school who harassed several teenage pro-life demonstrators has turned in his resignation.

The key here is the teacher’s admission that he was totally wrong:

Last Friday the administrator appeared at a school district hearing after which he was suspended without pay. The district said Ruff indicated at the hearing that he might resign but requested more time to review the charges, which included violating the protesters First Amendment rights, said Michael Levin, the attorney representing the district.

“Dr. Ruff has acknowledged that the demonstrators had a right to be on a public sidewalk,” the news release said. “He acknowledged that his conduct cannot be defended or condoned, and he deeply regretted his actions as displayed on the video. This school district will not interfere with the rights of anyone to express themselves.”

He might have been a very good teacher. He might still become a very good teacher. What is important is that if and when he teaches in the future, he does so respecting the opinions of others. As Cromwell said, “I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken.”



  • Steve Earle

    Now why does that Mea Culpa sound like it was written word for word by the same attorney that delivered it even though it allegedly quotes the Asst Principal?

    It would have been far more believable had it come directly from him.

    My guess is that Mr’Z’s hope for him will be partially fulfilled: Because he has (allegedly) fallen on his sword, he will indeed surface on the public payroll somewhere soon again, but I doubt very much his lack of respect for differing opinions will change….

    I also am intrigued by this statement of the Attorney: “…This school district will not interfere with the rights of anyone to express themselves…”

    So now they are going to embrace the opposite extreme where there are no judgments, no impediments whatsoever on the “Rights” of anyone to express themselves?

    How much you wanna bet they hide behind that rationale to justify not “interfering” when there is a group of leftist students ON school property, or a leftist group decides to disrupt the Rights of the Pro-life group (probably at the urging/encouragement of the school employees…)

    Apparently they have forgotten that Rights come with Responsibilities, that they have a responsibility to the other Students to maintain a safe, orderly and peaceful School atmosphere, and that even Free Speech is always limited in some ways, whether it’s in the school or even on a public sidewalk.

  • LocalFluff

    Principal Insectbrain flipped out when he (or “it” to be PC) heard words it was brainwashed to flip out on. The display of authority might not be representative for his everyday behavior. In his mind during this episode, he was fighting WW2 to kill Hitler.

    In Sweden today a teacher has been sued for $1,000 (yeah, here indemnities are tiny) as “compensation” for having pointed finger at a pupil. Nothing else, just pointing finger. Goldfinger. Needless to say, there’s a huge lack of teachers, they are treated as the lowest scum in society. We have all grown up with making fun of our teachers, the village idiots.

  • Jhon

    He is going to retire with about 70% of his salary. That is the problem with this. No punishment.

  • Laurie

    The reference, applied in this context, regarding absolute knowledge or certainty helps me to better understand the meaning of the words, “every thought in captivity.”

  • Laurie: Bronowski’s quote from Cromwell, “I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken,” is one of the central mottoes of my life. I apply it everything I write, or say, or think. More people should do so, especially in the political world, including people who post comments on webpages.

    It forces a tolerance of other people upon you that is quite uplifting.

  • Alex

    Mr. Zimmerman: You should consider: Cromwell was a king’s murderer and dictator, which brought also many fear and blood streams to the Irish’s. After his first death he received an additional penalty, which he deserved. He died naturally by Malaria in Ireland, but later he was disinterred from his grave officially and his body was executed symbolic.

  • Alex

    Correction: “Cromwell was a king murderer”.

  • Alex: You seem to be purposely missing the point. The point of the quote is not to honor Cromwell (though it is appropriate to credit him for saying it). It is to honor the quote itself, and the profound wisdom it encompasses. You should especially try to watch the full episode of “The Ascent of Man” in which Bronowsky uses the quote. You will gain some humility, and understanding of my position on all science.

  • Alex

    Mr. Z: Okay, thanks for clarifying.

  • Alex

    Mr. Zimmerman, thank you for the advice regarding “The Ascent of Man”. I made short looks into several episodes. It seems worth to be viewed at length. I found, it is considered as a master piece. You can buy it also at Amazon as DVDs. However, in the special episode you mentioned, Prof. Bronowski presented a wrong, much exaggerated number to death toll in Auschwitz at 38:30 minutes. I know it is a difficult subject, but shall be truth not the truth also in this case?

  • Alex: You are once again missing the point. In the case of the NAZI death camps, it really is absurd to argue about the numbers killed. It also distracts from Bronowski’s point, which is far more important.

    You should also watch the movie Judgment at Nuremberg (1961). The American judge sums it up well at the end of the film: “This is what we stand for, justice, truth, and the value of a single human being.” It doesn’t matter if the true number at Auschwitz was 1 or 10 million. The NAZIs decided they were higher than gods, had absolute certainty of knowledge, and committed atrocities in the name of that arrogance.

    As do many of today’s leftwing protesters.

  • Alex

    Mr. Zimmerman: I think you are not right. I think it is – at the end – against the whole important objective of Auschwitz victims’ remembranceis, if very wrong numbers (one order of magnitude?) are used, which is – as i hope and assume – not done by purpose. Truth must be truth, in any case. BTW, in an official film (can be found in the internet), which reports about a first Auschwitz process from 1948, the number of 0.3 million victims (not only Jews) is given. Is this more near to real number as that what Bronowski reports?

  • Edward

    Are you arguing over a number that Bronowski should have known at the time of his documentary or a number that was concluded after his documentary? As I recall, the actual number is not verifiable and that, just as are the numbers lost in the firebombing of Japanese cities, there are a range of estimates.

    Also, not all those who were killed in the NAZI concentration camps were Jewish. Others who merely angered NAZI officials or were in the way of those officials were also sent to those concentration camps. This is one of the reasons why Sophie’s choice is so shocking; for many reasons, she should never have been in such a position. Did Bronowski use numbers of Jews or overall numbers?

    It may be nice to be accurate, but it may also be difficult to achieve, where wartime holocausts are concerned.

    Meanwhile, it is nice of the schools to allow property off of school grounds to remain free speech zones, even though government school property is not.

  • Alex

    I objected Mr. Z, because in this specific case (which is a very difficult topic for free speech as it seems) significant quantitative differences turn into new qualitative situation (talking about a genocide for example, or not). At least, it was told us earlier very high numbers, which were propagated at most by Soviets, which were not a very reliable source at this time (if ever?). BTW, it seems more or less given for all concentration camps that official presented death numbers are declining significantly as time goes by, over the decades. If I remember correctly, in case of Auschwitz “official” numbers nears now about 1 to 1.4 million, starting at 4 million, which includes all sorts of victims. Allied forces displayed even a much smaller number in 1948 (0.3 million) in case of first Auschwitz process, which must be an error. In case of Majdanek, official death toll numbers has started at 1.7 million in 1945 and reaching now 78,000 (see Wikipedia).

  • Edward

    So, Alex, are you suggesting that Bronowski used the best available numbers at the time but that the official numbers have been reduced since?

    I’m not really sure how important the numbers are, since the concept was racial extermination. The concept was well underway and came close to happening in NAZI controlled areas. This concept is appalling enough without the NAZIs using the process to eliminate other inconvenient people, too. Totalitarian states tend to reward their friends and punish (or eliminate) their enemies, whether they be individuals or groups. They also tend to deny free speech rights from those they disagree with.

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