Saturday, November 08, 2008

NC Teacher discusses comments

Fayetteville teacher Diatha Harris talks about a controversial online video that shows her telling a student her soldier father might stay in Iraq another 100 years because of her support for presidential candidate John McCain.

The teacher regrets saying "So, that means that your father could stay in Iraq for 100 years." She has apologized to the student and her parents for saying it. She also believes she is not browbeating the students and is troubled by the editting that was done. Watch the video interview at

The students are defending the teacher saying,

"But the parents of that student, and the student herself, said Friday that teacher Diantha Harris did nothing wrong.

“She is usually messing around,” said Cathy Thompson, who was in Harris' fifth-grade class in May when a Swedish film crew visited for a documentary on American politics. “When she said that, I knew she was messing around.”

The Swedish filmakers also defended the teacher,

"Filmmaker Folke Ryden said during a telephone interview from his home in Sweden that Harris was “exaggerating” with her comments to students that day to get them interested in a discussion about the presidential race. He had asked her to talk about politics in the classroom for his film. He said the comment about the child's father staying in the military for 100 years was a joke.

“And I think her students know that as well,” he said. “But if you want to, of course, you can interpret the situation in a way that is not favorable for her, for the teacher, and I think that is what you are seeing.”

I'll have to go watch the video again, I must have missed the laughter from the kids the first time.

I guess this whole controversy is just the fault of conservative bloggers who just don't know how to take a joke! So what are we to think about the teacher saying "Oh, Jesus" every time a student mentions John McCain?

The Fayetteville Oberver adds more details here.

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