By Morris Phillips
Letter To The Editor
California is rated 48th out of 50 states for per capita investment in public education. The Inglewood Unified School District is the only school district under receivership, including 11,500 school districts. The education is inferior. However, there is a plan to transform the district from the worst to the first within one year. A blue-ribbon school district is at hand. On the contrary, county administrators are not on board with the unofficial PTA, parents, and even enlightened students. The county administrators want the receivership period to run until 2034 and borrow 30 million dollars unnecessarily while still imposing austerity measures.
David Orbach, the Inglewood Unified School District attorney, had apologized to me on March 11, 2021, after my attorney Mr. Marcus Stanbury and the district had agreed to read my three-minute public comment on March 10; yet again, my words were not read. It was the third time that county administrators had attempted to silence my voice.
On 3/15/2021, I arrived at the Inglewood Police Department and spoke to Officer P. Manning. Officer Manning had advised me that as long as my protest in front of the Inglewood unified school district was peaceful, there shouldn’t be any problems. On March 15, 2021, I protested in front of the district office (peaceful protest) and was handcuffed, put in the back of a police cruiser, questioned then released. The event took place twenty-minutes after officer P. manning advised me that my peaceful protest was okay. The first officer on the scene was officer Dotson. Shortly after that, officer Manning had arrived, and his tone was much different. Officer manning stated that Ms. Bernadette
Lucas was not open to any community assistance or ideas. According to officer Manning, things would become regrettable if I didn’t stop my resistance campaign to receivership.
I employ soft protest tactics, which are as follows:
1. do not hinder anyone’s due process
2. Never obstruct anyone’s coming or going in any direction
3. Never address those people I’m protesting with any sounds
4. No blocking of driveways or doorways
5. No weapons and no foul language
6. I protest solo (no crowds, no groups)
Ms. Lucas called the police on 3/15/21 and watched as they handcuffed me, patted me down, and placed me in the back seat of the police cruiser. After twenty-five minutes, the officers removed the cuffs, and I continued my resistance to receivership. In my opinion, the school district may be under receivership, but it still belongs to the local community. Neither Bernadette Lucas nor Erika Torres has the right to silence community voices, call the police on soft protesters, deny millions and millions of dollars to the district from private sources, and they don’t own our students, staff, or parents. They are working against the community instead of working with the community to end this crisis of receivership.