The Sound of Silence
Hello dear friends,
I wanted to share with you the latest development on my case. If you recall I was fired from my teaching job in Bloomington, Indiana for making a statement in support of peace before the war in Iraq began. Most recently I appealed to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago to reverse the lower court’s ruling stating that teacher’s have no right of free speech.
I have lost the appeal with the court ignoring the issue to be decided, disregarding the facts of my case, and making assumptions that are not true. My attorney and I have petitioned for a rehearing, but I understand those are seldom granted in this court.
I am attaching the opinion and the request for rehearing so you can know the facts first hand. Either this court is crooked or extremely incompetent. Either way I am being denied justice and the entire country will suffer as a result.
Please share the opinion with your friends in education. Teachers need to know that their precious freedom of speech is now considered a commodity by the court. From the opinion, “. . . the school system does not “regulate” a teacher’s speech as much as it hires that speech. Expression is a teacher’s stock in trade, the commodity she sells to her employer in exchange for a salary.”
I would intensely argue that my speech is not for sale at any price and certainly not for a paltry teacher’s salary. My stock in trade is my knowledge about how kids learn and how to best teach them – not my right of free speech. I think this language changes entirely how we view our freedom. I certainly would not sell my freedom to a school system that requires me to teach lies as the truth as Monroe County Community School Corporation did. I was required to teach that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and other untruths, and to always paint the President in a favorable light without giving real opposing views.
My next step is to go to the Supreme Court, but I need help. If you care about your right of free speech, please tell everyone you know about this new view of freedom.
She added that the Garcetti v. Ceballos Supreme Court decision last summer served to silence government workers nationwide, herself included. Mayer requested that we do all we can to stem the tide and push for the reversal of what she sees as a unconstitutional decision. She pleaded, "Please help save free speech at school. Call your school board. Write letters to the editor. Talk about it while you still have the freedom."