Setting Standards April 21, 2012Posted by Benjamin Wendell in Uncategorized.
Tags: fired, oxnard, porn, prostitutes, secret service, standards, teacher, termination
Thanks to ace blog scout Eric for pointing out another issue to me:
It’s not the first time we’ve seen such a story. In August 2011 a Miami substitute teacher was banned when his past as a gay adult film actor was discovered. In September 2011 a ten year veteran fifth grade teacher in Florida was dismissed after an anonymous tipster believed to be her ex-husband dropped off DVD’s of her engaged in consensual sex acts and allegedly smoking marijuana. In September 2010 a New York teacher was forced to resign after she wrote an essay on the Huffington Post revealing her past as a paid escort and stripper.
What’s somewhat unusual about the current story is the location in Oxnard, California, just miles from San Fernando Valley, the home to most of the adult movie studios in the US. It makes you wonder how many other teachers in the region might be picking up a few extra bucks moonlighting on the dark side…teachers, are after all, massively underpaid.
In light of the current Secret Service scandal, it also raises the question of just where we set the bar for moral standards, on and off the job. If we’re going to say that teachers can’t teach if they’ve ever worked in the retail sex industry, what about if they’re simply nudists? What if there’s a drunken topless picture on Facebook? What if they’ve ever sexted? What if a friend caught them back in freshman year sucking some kind of smoke out of a bong and put it up on their personal blog? This is the digital age, and as such, the kind of choices almost all of us have made over the years, some not choices we’d like to publicize, are documented somewhere for most Gen-X’ers and beyond. Does that mean that none of these kids can become teachers, doctors, lawyers, or public servants? Does “The Tiger Rule” apply across the board?
Likewise, the Secret Service agents who have been humiliated and fired over the activities in Colombia are not necessarily bad agents. Any one of them would undoubtedly take a bullet for their protectees without hesitation. I’m willing to bet that these aren’t the first federal agents, whether FBI, Secret Service, CIA, DIA, or MP who have employed prostitutes somewhere along their travels, and it’s a virtual certainty that any number of agents have had illicit affairs. Do any or all of those missteps qualify for immediate job termination? Or does the idiotic frat boy drunken bacchanal that was Colombia stand out as an outlier? Just asking.