Fox 6 Milwaukee: fourth-graders on field trip were made participate in an anti-Walker protest.

Every day at Wisconsin’s state capitol, twenty or so people get together at lunchtime for a pro-union, anti-Scott Walker singalong. It’s annoying, but harmless, and, well, whaddayagonna do. Free speech.

But.

Wisconsin fourth grade classes traditionally take a field trip to the state capitol. Naturally, these days, these fourth-graders are getting a first-hand view of the protesters.

No big deal, really. It’s good for them to see the First Amendment in action. A touch disconcerting, of course, that they’re only seeing the anti-Walker side, and that since their teachers are more likely than not to be union, and anti-Walker themselves…

…I’m sure there are plenty of teachers doing a very good job despite their personal opinions. I’m also sure there are plenty who aren’t.

Count among that latter group Portage teacher Mike Hemming. Fox 6 Milwaukee’s Brian Polcyn reports:

It is common practice for elementary schools to take students on a tour of the Wisconsin State Capitol, but how would you feel if your child went on just such a field trip, and ended up being led, quite literally, into the middle of a political protest?

One superintendent refused to watch video of this very thing occurring, and his elementary school principal waited 22 days to tell parents what happened.

On a Tuesday in late September, FOX6 watched as elementary school children were led into the middle of the protest, and encouraged to clap and sing along.

You can watch the whole report at the link.

To be completely honest, this doesn’t look like much to get mad over. I doubt the kids really understood what was going on. They were apparently in the circle only for a couple of minutes. The district did, finally, after being exposed by Fox 6, put a letter of reprimand in the teacher’s file and let parents know what had happened.

Should it have happened? No. But in the grand scheme of things, feh.

On the other hand, for the teacher to say:

“I did not observe any indication that the people were seeking to advance any religious or political cause. While I am embarrassed and upset by the incident, I know that I did not do anything wrong.”

He didn’t recognize it? After everything that’s happened? After all the information he must have gotten from his union? With the banners and signs and anti-Walker t-shirts the singers wear?

Well, okay, maybe. If so, then he’s too stupid to be a teacher.

But the main point I want to make is: good for Fox6 and Brian Polcyn. That’s a nearly 9-minute segment out of a 30-minute news program. And it wasn’t a slow news day: the Wisconsin State Legislature was in the midst of passing the Castle Doctrine; new frivolous lawsuit restrictions (which Democrats labeled sexist and racist); elimination of racial weighting of scholarship applications; guidelines for public school sex ed classes.

There were plenty of stories available to report. Plenty of stories available that are easily slanted in liberal’s/Democrats’ favor, which, as a media-cynical conservative, is far more what I would expect.

And maybe Fox 6 did report on those things. Dunno. The point is: they made time for a 9-minute segment that made the government educracy (and, if only collaterally) the ongoing protests look bad.

All for the sake of reporting a story they knew parents would care about.

Good for them.

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