Police union leader: Teachers who present a cop killer as a hero are committing ‘psychological child abuse’

March 24, 2014

Kyle Olson Kyle Olson

Kyle founded Education Action Group in 2007.
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PHILADELPHIA – As leftists prepare to celebrate the 60th birthday of convicted cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal in April, there appears to be a renewed push by radical educators to treat him as a martyr.

Free Mumia signThat means some of our nation’s impressionable youngsters are going to be taught that this murderer is really a good guy.

Abu-Jamal, a member of the Black Panther Party and a renowned local radio journalist, was convicted of killing Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner on Dec. 9, 1981.

He was working as a cab driver for extra money that evening, and was apparently parked along a city street when he witnessed his brother, William Cook, being pulled over by Faulkner in a traffic stop. Abu-Jamal left his vehicle and intervened, a struggle ensued, and both he and Faulkner were shot.

Abu-Jamal claimed an unidentified person arrived on the scene, shot Faulkner and fled. Three witnesses testified that they saw Abu-Jamal shoot the officer.

Abu-Jamal was convicted of murder in 1982 and sentenced to death. He spent 30 years in Death Row before an appeals court lowered the sentence to life in prison with no chance of parole in 2012.

Meanwhile, he’s become a cult hero to thousands on the extreme political left.

Leftists compare Abu-Jamal to MLK!

The truly scary thing is that many of Abu-Jamal’s fans don’t seem to care about the fact that he killed a police officer. For instance, a flattering film about Mumia barely mentions the incident, as if it were a minor detail in an otherwise exemplary life.

Public school teachers are some of the biggest Abu-Jamal fans around, and they have no qualms about presenting him to wide-eyed students as some sort of folk hero.

Get this: A lesson plan posted on the Oakland (Calif.) Unified School District website suggests students attempt to draw parallels between the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Abu-Jamal.

“Critically examine a possible parallel between Martin Luther King, Jr., and someone else many believe is currently targeted by the U.S. government, Mumia Abu-Jamal,” the lesson plan reads.

Let’s compare a man who led one of the great non-violent social movements in the history of the world to a brutal murderer. Why not?

It continues with a rant about the convict’s inability to attract widespread media attention:

“The media, prison system and law enforcement organizations have censored Mumia Abu Jamal.

“On one hand, there have been occasional stories in print and broadcast media about Mumia Abu-Jamal. On the other, despite the widespread support for Abu-Jamal that has made his case the most renown (sic) and controversial of death penalty cases in the world today, these stories are extremely rare and always refer to him as a ‘convicted cop-killer.’ And despite his prolific writings published in several books, none of his work can be found in mainstream media.

“Commentaries by him that were to be broadcast by National Public Radio were cancelled before they had a chance to be aired, under intense pressure from the right wing, including the Fraternal Order of Police.”

The only way a convicted murderer deserves media attention is if there’s any doubt about his guilt. That’s hardly the case with Mumia, yet his fans believe his every utterance should be published, studied and honored, as if he were some sort of latter day Messiah.

The lesson plan was authored by Craig Gordon, a middle school teacher at OUSD and a teachers union leader. Previously, Gordon organized an annual “teach-in” to tell students about Abu-Jamal.

EAGnews reached out to Gordon for comment but he did not respond. The website states the information in the lesson plan was funded by a U.S. Department of Education technology innovation challenge grant.

Yet another complete and shameful waste of taxpayer dollars.

Ridiculous teachers worship a killer

“Educators for Mumia Abu-Jamal,” a group supporting the release of the killer, urges teachers to show students the film “Long Distance Revolutionary – The Journey of Mumia Abu-Jamal.” The group provides curricular materials and a study guide to accompany the movie.

“This film enables teachers a striking opportunity to introduce one of the longest-running, revolutionary social movements in U.S. history: the struggle to expose the constitutional and human rights violations in Mumia’s case and to free Mumia,” the group’s website states.

A former educator wrote a review of the film on StudentHandouts.com.

A documentary film using plenty of archival footage, ‘Mumia’ includes some profanity. Considering the subject matter and film format, this is appropriate and should not pose a problem for viewing in high school classrooms,” wrote Alicia Fox, who holds a Master of Education degree.

“Filmmaker Stephen Vittoria’s decision to not delve into the details of Officer Faulkner’s murder is as much exasperating as it is refreshing. A fan of crime shows, as many of us are, I want to have every fact, detail, missed clue, and bit of evidence laid out before me.

“Yet I understand the desire to fully present Mr. Abu-Jamal as a human being. Indeed, up until the murder is quickly described in the film, it is hard to imagine how the subject could have been found guilty of jaywalking, let alone killing another human being.”

Fox gave the film a 7 out of 10 for “educative value.”

Jim Wallace, a New York City high school teacher, posted a note on an “anti-racist” Yahoo! group page seeking lesson plans about Abu-Jamal.

“The only thing I’ve found on the web is a lesson plan which, while not bad, leaves out an important ingredient: getting kids to take up the case!” Wallace wrote. “If I were going to have a lesson plan I might start with the ‘Me & Mumia’ & then have kids read ‘Why Mumia is a hero to young people.’”

Meanwhile, Educators for Mumia will be co-hosting a march and “Celebration of Life” for the murderer’s 60th birthday in April. It remains to be seen how many naïve students will be enlisted to blow out the candles.

Police union rep: Mumia lessons are ‘psychological child abuse’ 

These glowing reviews of Abu-Jamal do not impress Richard Costello, political director for the Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police, which was Officer Faulkner’s union.

“They were written by hard core racists,” Costello told EAGnews. “They’re preaching racial division and violence. And if that’s the message we’re sending to our children then this county is heading for trouble.

“Why this cold blooded killer is the poster boy for hatred, I don’t know. The Kennedy assassination is not as clear cut as this. It’s not that they say he’s innocent, it’s that they say he’s not guilty.

“He never said he did not kill Officer Faulkner. He said he’s not guilty of wrongdoing. That’s a sinister difference. He’s telling you he murdered a police officer and that there’s nothing wrong with that.”

Sadly, many of Mumia’s followers, including many people who teach children, seem to share that same philosophy.

So what should happen to educators who are using their classrooms to push this propaganda on students?

“If they were on the (political) right, they would be fired. I don’t understand the double standard. They should be fired and kept away from children. This is psychological child abuse,” Costello said.

“The message is: ‘Drugs are okay. Disregard your parents. Cheat on your next test and crime pays.’ That’s the message they’re sending. They’re turning the schools into recruiting agencies for the nation’s prisons.”

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