A new radio ad from the Community Unification for Educational Excellence, Inc (CUEE) has sparked a lot of controversy in the few days it has been running in local media.Yes, that’s what Chris Beckham told me when I talked to him today. I’ll be on his radio show on WVGA 105.9, tomorrow, about 4PM.
The ad, voiced by an actor who sounds like Morgan Freeman but is not, encourages Valdosta city residents to vote “Yes” on school consolidation November 8th. The commercial claims that Valdosta schools are “once again segregated” and ties the success of the vote to Dr. Martin Luther King’s vision.
You can hear the radio ad in the Valdosta Today article.
The article contains this priceless quote by the real Morgan Freeman, albeit in a slightly different context:
These people are lying.
Among the quotes is this one by Sam Allen,
CUEE has stooped to a new low with this ad. I think it’s offensive and I think they feel that the citizens of Valdosta are stupid if they believe this. Dr. King’s dream had nothing to do with school consolidation in Valdosta and it’s shameful that they are trying to put those two things together.Yeah, pretty much.
It seems that CUEE has managed to alienate even a Black Crow radio host. First, some of a statement CUEE provided Black Crow:
“The goal of the Vote Yes Committee is not to inflame our citizens or divide us from the important task of educating all our children. We strongly encourage all our citizens to take a deep breath, lower the rhetoric and have a meaningful dialogue leading to the vote on November 8th.”Oh, excuse me, that was the Vote Yes Committee, not CUEE. What exactly is the difference, anyway? Does anybody know? And does anybody know where their money comes from?
Anyway, I’m not sure that pro-“unification” group got the reaction they wanted:
In response to the Vote Yes statement, Chris Beckham told ValdostaToday.com, “I also hope citizens look at all of the available information, including the possible financial ramifications, and make an informed decision. We have been having a meaningful dialogue about the subject for several months on our program every day.” Adding, “The CUEE committee “inflamed” citizens when it phrased the ballot question in a way that Lowndes County citizens, who would be equally affected by consolidation, are not allowed to have their voice heard.”Or, as I put it: taxation without representation.