Richard Bain, This Is What You Did
This is about personal responsibility. Inhuman decisions are not made by faceless institutions. Inhuman decisions are made by people; people who abdicate their moral obligations under the cover of a job title.
This is what you did, Richard Bain: You told a sixteen year old girl that she would be thrown off the cheerleading squad if she didn’t shout the name of the man who raped her. You let cheer coach Sissy McInnis throw her off the squad when she did not.
It’s not like what happened is in dispute. Rakheem Bolton has now pleaded guilty to a crime in connection with the incident, when [Trigger Warning] at an after-game party, he and another athlete, Christian Roundtree, pushed her into a room and raped her. Now, most of us would wonder what kind of a moral lesson it sends when a school has a known criminal on its high school basketball team. Most of us wonder how on earth an educator (a career educator, with a comfortable six figure salary) could make the decision not to throw him off. One might even ponder the culture of athletics in a school where athletes work together to rape a young woman, at an after-game party.
But not you! Not only did you, Richard Bain Jr. of Silsbee Texas ISD decide to keep him on the team, but you tried to get the victim to withdraw from Homecoming activities, as if she had done something wrong. Fortunately, she has the support of her family, and you were told what you could do with that suggestion.
And then you demanded that she cheer, specifically, for the man that raped her, or she was off the squad.
This makes you a person morally unfit to interact with teens. You, Richard Bain Jr. of Silsbee, Texas, should not be permitted near a school, let alone be allowed to run one.
Other commentators (like Tracy Clark-Flory) have covered the story by talking about the school as an institutions. I understand that, but I think perhaps a different approach is needed. What’s that concept that conservatives are always yammering on about? Oh, yeah. Personal responsibility. I don’t think a school makes a decision. I think a school is a building. I think people make decisions, and those people need to be accountable for them. That means you, Richard Bain, Jr., Superintendant of theSilsbee, Texas Independent School District.
If anyone else wants to express an opinion about Richard Bain Jr. of Silsbee, Texas, I encourage them to contact him here:
Richard Bain Jr., Superintendent, Silsbee Independent School District, 415 Highway 327 West, Silsbee, TX, 77656; firstname.lastname@example.org; (409) 980-7800.
(Via Ms., which apparently sees it like I do.)
Or add your name to the petition here.
Note: For legal eagles, the 5th Circuit decision, a six page Per Curiam by a panel of Garza Clement and Owen, is here.