Pamela Greenbaum Pulls Out of School Board Race
Lawrence school board President Asher Mansdorf and Trustee Pamela Greenbaum both have decided to not run for re-election.Riiiight. Her rights. Her "rights" to what? Her "rights" not be called out and criticized on her publicly stated positions as an elected official? Oh, yeah. An elected official doesn't actually have a right to hide from criticism of their positions, a little fact that Ms. Greenbaum apparently was not informed of by her brilliant advisers on this matter. Her rights? Maybe she's mixing up what she erroneously considers to be an infringement on her rights with what is actually an infringement on my First Amendment rights. Because let's be very clear here. It is actually my rights which have been interfered with of late - and by Ms. Greenbaum herself, no less.
Dr. Mansdorf said it had been "interesting," running the District 15 board since voters elected a majority of Orthodox, private school parents and had given him the opportunity to meet "some truly incredible people who I never would have had a
chance to meet."
Mansdorf plans to spend more time now running his Central Avenue dental practice. He was blunt and to the point about his decision: "I'm not running."
Greenbaum, one of two board members representing the public school minority, said, "It's really, really a hard decision to make," and seemed to leave the door slightly open to the possibility of changing her mind. "As of this moment in time the decision is no," she said.
Reached by phone one recent morning, Mansdorf revealed that he'd received six phone calls already that day urging him to reconsider.
Both trustees have endured a great deal of criticism, sometimes from each other. It often got personal. A number of months ago Mansdorf even received a threat against his and family's lives.
Most recently, Greenbaum was criticized. even by some of her own supporters, after she filed a discovery motion against Google for the purpose of unmasking the popular local blogger known as Orthomom. As an elected official, Greenbaum is likely to find it nearly impossible to convince a court that she was defamed by anonymous postings and comments on the blog which were critical, sometimes strongly so, of her policy positions.
Nonetheless, Greenbaum said her decision to not run for re-election would have no bearing on the case, which she insisted was a personal matter, not related to her
duties as a board member.
"It has nothing to do with the board or me being a candidate or a board member. It's a totally separate part of my life," she said. "Orthomom has attacked me on my board policies and board issues for years and I have never said anything. When you personally attack somebody and it affects different areas of their life, I feel that - I felt compelled to do something, to stick up for myself. It has to do with my rights."
And this line is particularly amusing: "Orthomom has attacked me on my board policies and board issues for years and I have never said anything. When you personally attack somebody and it affects different areas of their life, I feel that - I felt compelled to do something, to stick up for myself." Ms. Greenbaum still seems to be ignoring the very real and salient fact that I have never done anything more that attack her board policies. I don't know who she means when she uses the word "you", but it sure as heck isn't me who attacked her personally. I wish she would just have accepted that basic and very relevant fact and saved herself time (and presumably money) on this absurd claim she is chasing.
My opinion on her choice not to run? I truly think that despite her protestations, she made her decision to drop out because she lost the support of her constituency when she filed the frivolous proceeding in a misguided attempt to silence me and my commenters. I have received comments on this blog making it clear that many in the public school community do not support her suit, and feel that it served only as an unwelcome distraction from real, far more pressing issues that affect the children of this community. Pity.