To the Editor:
For as long as I can remember, our schools have taught us to “Just Say No” to drugs, a campaign that started in the 1970s. In 1982 our First Lady Nancy Reagan replied “Just Say No!’ to a young child who had asked Mrs. Reagan what she should do if she should be offered drugs. All these years this is what our Bayonne schools have taught us. We also have our Drug Free School Zones around every school in every ward. Anyone and everyone who has attended our schools know the acronym D.A.R.E. Every year the students participate in the National Red Ribbon Campaign with every day being a new activity promoting being drug free. Red Ribbon Day, Sock It To Drugs Day, Turn Your Back On Drugs Day, I’m Wild About Living Drug Free Day and I’m Too Bright For Drugs Day.
Our Board of Education website states in its manual that parents have to sign consent for random drug testing if their child wishes to participate in athletics. In another rule in the manual it’s written that students must remain drug free. Yet, one of the trustees of the board…Michael Alonso can be seen on YouTube supporting a cannabis campaign. Not only is this conduct unbecoming of a BOE trustee who has a voice regarding our children’s education, how do we as parents and educators continue to teach our young people to “Just Say No” when a person who makes decisions regarding their education is displaying drug paraphernalia in public in broad daylight? Is Mr. Alonso under the influence of illegal drugs as he sits at the board table discussing and voting on issues that will affect our children? Is this the reason why he is insistent on fighting for things that have nothing directly to do with our children’s education and everything with his own odd & twisted agenda? It is well known that drugs cloud judgment. If a teacher, coach or administrator had reason to believe that a student athlete was under the influence they would have to undergo random drug testing as per the consent they and their parents had to sign. If it’s good enough for our students it is certainly good enough for our trustees who make such important decisions. After all, it was the board that would have had to vote to establish random drug testing wasn’t it? It’s time for Mr. Alonso to prove that he’s “not high in the high school” and for us as a community to protect the sanctity of our drug free schools and demand Mr. Alonso prove to us that he is of a sound, clear and drug free mind or resign.