Debate on Allen Lee Essay Continues

The debate on the appropriateness of Cary-Grove High School’s and the Cary Police Department’s reaction to high school senior Allen Lee’s essay continue.

How long will this continue?

The Chicago Tribune’s Eric Zorn writes Tuesday,

“Allow me to stick the sock of reason into the bugle on which so many are playing taps for the 1st Amendment in McHenry County.”

He asks these questions:

“Was it reasonable for the teacher to read Lee’s essay as a threat to her or to students?

“Did Lee intend to convey such a threat to the teacher?”

He concludes,

“When prosecutors learn more, they may drop the charges and announce this whole episode was a huge misunderstanding based on a twitchy overreaction.

“If Lee goes to trial on these misdemeanor charges, a judge or jury may find the same thing. Or not.

“Either way, the issue won’t be a student’s right of free expression, but a teacher’s right to be free from threats and intimidation. The 1st Amendment won’t enter into it.

“Play taps, now, if you will, for the idea that this story has any larger meaning.”

But, others like WTTW-TV’s Chicago Tonight commentator Dawn Trice said Thursday,

I’m afraid Allen Lee’s arrest swill stifle the creative writing process.

She concluded,

“What we’ve ended up doing is profiling…but it really doesn’t work.”

And local “Heck of a Guy” blogger, Allan Showalter observed in an email to me,

“Well, I suppose we should have known that this ‘free speech’ fad couldn’t last.”

I really enjoy the way he expresses things.

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