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Letter to the editor

A call to reconsider school rule

June 29, 2011 - Dear Editor,

To the Clarkston Board of Education, please reconsider your recent actions to limit the freedom of speech from the members of the school board to the public.

This action simply serves to impede the flow of information from the members of this elected body to the very people who elected them to serve us. We depend on our news sources to report the actions, opinions and statements of all those who serve.

We have elected seven individuals who are sworn to provide their best efforts to lead the schools. We should expect and depend that these seven people will have different perspectives, thoughts and opinions on various matters.

We should expect these seven people will not always agree, and that they are strong enough to have intelligent and vigorous debates in a public forum and then arrive at a decision.

I don't want this activity to happen behind closed doors and then to be sanitized into a single voice so that it appears there is one thought from the entire body.

To pull the curtain closed only serves to heighten concerns that matters are being decided in ways that you want to hide from the public.

To try and appoint a single voice will serve to create an atmosphere of collusion. I don't toss around our Constitution to United States of America lightly, but there is a reason the very first amendment protects the freedom of speech and the press.

The action taken by the school board is clearly limiting the intent and spirit of this constitutional amendment.

As residents, parents, tax payers and members of the community we deserve unfiltered and unfettered access to all the information - the good, the bad and the ugly. What we don't want is well rehearsed, PR sound bites created for disingenuous public consumption.

Tim Smith

Independence Township

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