When I was a kid, the principal at my elementary school was Mr. Howes. He was a kindly balding man who was compassionate but firm, friendly and kind. He also didn't put up with much shit and had no problems using the paddle (they did that in the mid-70's, remember?!) Everyone loved Mr. Howes. Everyone believed that he wanted his school to be the best in my town. I am sure we all put him up on a pedestal, and he never let us down. I wish I could say the same for the principal at the middle school my children will be attending in a few years. It seems that the principal was busted for selling meth on Tuesday night. At school.
I am angry on so many levels. First of all, I am pissed that my tax dollars are paying the salary of a man who makes $97,000 a year while maintaining a side business selling meth. I am pissed that he showed such incredibly poor judgement by doing this activity at the school. As parents, we entrust our schools to keep our children safe and help them to thrive in an educational environment that is free of undesirable elements. I am amazed that the staff is so free in saying that they thought something was wrong with him, or witnessed his downward spiral, yet no one ever reported it--not even to the DARE representative who is based at that school. Frankly, their statements are only making me less comfortable in sending my kids there when the time comes.
I am utterly dismayed that when the police arrested him, they found him naked in his office, watching porn. While the whole act of watching porn on one's computer at work is nothing new, doing it naked is quite a bold move. I can't get on to some of my favorite sites at lunchtime to do internet shopping, but he can watch porn.
It is so hard for me to not judge this man. I am sure he is a good man who got caught up in a lot of bad shit. I can't help but think of the children and families he has helped over the years and how betrayed they must feel. Unfortunately, I am sure this case will only get worse. The press felt the need to report that he was watching gay porn as opposed to just porn, so I am sure it will be a matter of time before some parent reports an "inappropriate" relationship with his or her child.
I guess the lesson to be learned here is that no one should be placed on a pedestal.
UPDATE** Now the Bethlehem School Board has hired an unnamed law firm to investigate how John Acerra started down this path of selling meth. The article in this morning's paper says that the law firm will take as long as necessary to get those answers. Fantastic. Now the school board will be wasting EVEN MORE taxpayer dollars. Last I checked, this is the Police Department's job. Frankly, I don't care about the whys and the hows. I just care about the simple fact that it happened. We need to throw the book at him, have him rot in prison and move on. We don't need anymore irrelevant crap uncovered so that more comedians like Jay Leno can make this ordeal the butt of their jokes. Acerra just needs to go away.