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OPINION: Don’t upset mother

by Graham Thomas | January 11, 2023 at 4:00 a.m.

Driving to church in the country one morning a while back, I saw an unusual sight. At first glance, it appeared to be a stampede of Black Angus cattle, something I had never seen before. But on closer inspection, it turned out to be something different. Dramatically different.

Leading the way was a single calf, running as fast as its legs could carry it.

Ten yards behind the calf was a coyote, slowly closing on its prey with each stride, preparing to strike.

And 10 yards behind the coyote were half a dozen Black Angus cows -- mothers all, I assume -- each with murder in her eyes.

Now while I'm pretty sure I know what the coyote's overall strategy was, the tactic he was using to meet his goal was doomed to fail. If he managed to get to the calf, within 10 seconds he was going to be pulverized and end up in a crumpled heap on the Norwood Prairie, courtesy of the angry moms who were chasing him. (I am reminded of the old Roadrunner cartoons and the scenes of the coyote lying in a heap with stars circling his head when another of his schemes failed.)

Last election season in Berkeley, S.C., a school board composed primarily of members endorsed by a group called Moms for Liberty voted to remove the district superintendent and the district's legal counsel, forbid the teaching of Critical Race Theory in its schools and form a committee to establish policies and procedures for removing materials that contain "inappropriate sexual and/or pornographic content" from district libraries. It seems that a substantial number of mothers who had children attending schools in the district felt their kids were in danger of being indoctrinated in subjects other than reading, writing and arithmetic. Subjects they believed might be best addressed at home, or not at all.

I can't speak to the specifics of all that went on in Berkeley, but I can tell you this: in 38 years of teaching I never had to deal with anyone more vengeful and dangerous than an angry mother.

An angry mother can't be bargained with. She can't be reasoned with. She doesn't feel pity or remorse or fear. And she absolutely will not stop, ever, until you're dea...

Oops. Sorry. That's a reworked quote from the first "Terminator" movie. But you get the idea. It's best not to make moms angry by harassing their children. Otherwise, it will be you who gets pulverized and ends up lying in a crumpled heap with stars circling your head.

Just a word of warning.

-- Doug Chastain is a retired teacher and is currently a large-vehicle transportation specialist for the Siloam Springs School District. (Okay, he drives a bus.) He is also a grass maintenance technician at Camp Siloam. (Yeah, he mows the lawn.) You can contact him at [email protected] The opinions expressed are those of the author.

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