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Michael Smerconish

NEW! Smerconsih book released September 2004:

The case for racial profiling in the skies

Michael Smerconish is a wildly popular radio talk show host on "The Big Talker," AM 1210 in Philadelphia. Michael's 3 to 6 drive-time show has been called "a lightning rod of controversy and spirited discussion."

Michael is also a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News and produces a daily political commentary for KYW Newsradio in Philadelphia. He has provided current events and political commentary on a variety of national television programs, including the O'Reilly Factor on Fox News, Hardball on CNBC, and the Today Show. He currently appears every Sunday morning in the 8 a.m. hour on CNN where he provides legal commentary on the current events of the week.

You can read more about Michael Smerconish's background and accomplishments on his own website,

    by Michael Smerconish

    August 22, 2003

    The kids may be getting on your nerves, but don't be so anxious to send them back to class. Here are three reasons.

    • In New York City, the first gay high school will soon open its doors.

    • In Oberlin, Ohio, there is a controversy as to whether a white instructor - any white instructor - is equipped to teach black history in the high school.

    • And in Happy Valley, a graduate professor of education has been revealed to be a paroled triple murderer.

    No wonder home schooling is on the rise.

    In New York, the Harvey Milk High School is ready to welcome only students who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. More than three million bucks has just been spent renovating a school that will house up to 170 students. Some say it represents another milestone in a summer of advancements for gay rights.

    I disagree.

    It's actually quite a regression.

    "What we're doing is moving back to a segregated society," said Mike Long, the Conservative Party chairman in New York. "All these years, we've been fighting for diversity and well-rounded education and mainstreaming, and here now we're going to send kids to a four-year school, and then what?

    "Do they go to a gay college? A gay job?"

    He's correct, or course. It's a throwback to separate but equal.

    If the motivation is to free these kids from schoolyard bullies, the answer is to knock some manners into the bullies. Will the next thing be a school for all the kids never picked for basketball?

    Then there is Oberlin High, where the same black teacher has taught black history for the last seven years. Now, a scheduling conflict may cause his re-assignment, and some parents are squawking that black history must be taught by a person of color. Published reports say the community is actually divided on the issue.

    Perhaps the answer is for Oberlin and Harvey Milk to form a new school district. Gay teachers for gay students and black teachers for classes touching on race. It's a perfect fit. If we want to offer Latin, we'll just ask Jennifer Lopez.

    Then there's Penn State, where Professor Paul Krueger turned out to be one of Freddy's relatives.

    Seems his curriculum vitae sported not only a few degrees, but also a conviction for a triple murder in 1965. Nevertheless, he was able to work in Happy Valley undiscovered for four years.

    BUT HIS past was revealed when the Pennsylvania parole board received notification from the Texas parole board that he was in the state.

    Seems Krueger was paroled from a life sentence after serving just 14 years. He was said to be a model prisoner who had straightened out his life.

    Some are quick to blame Penn State for having a convicted murderer on staff.

    No doubt PSU should inquire about the criminal backgrounds of everyone on its payroll. How- ever, you can't blame Krueger for seeking employment there.

    But the real lesson here is that if you leave six children fatherless by your murderous acts, you should not be getting out of prison.

    Not after 14 years. Not after 50. Life in prison should mean just that. Life.

    Think Penn State is an aberration? Consider that this week, the Camden School District announced that 12 of its employees are losing their jobs because of rap sheets revealed in background checks.

    See you in September.


    "When Schools Go Off The Deep End" first appeared in the Philadelphia Daily News and is reprinted on The Tocquevillian by permission

    © 2003 Tocqevillian Magazine