Thursday, August 14, 2008
What not to Say to a Cabbie!
I have been trying to avoid blogging about the radio talk show host Michael Savage. He recently made some nasty comments to the effect that the rise in numbers of children with autism is attributable to something akin to permissive parenting. While his comments are outrageous, they have little to do with the "law" part of the special education law blog.
Well I guess it was inevitable that the law would collide with the infamous radio talk show host. After the excellent Education Law Conference, some of us decided to try to get some Maine lobster. It was raining, so we took a taxi. The driver has the radio on really loud and some classic windbag was yakking about tomatoes, NAFTA and Mexico.
So I ask the cabbie who he is listening to on the radio. (NOTE: My strengths do not include sitting quietly when talking is an option.) He says it is Savage. I mention that my work sometimes involves autistic kids and that I didn't appreciate his comments about them. (This is where the "what not to say to a cabbie" part comes in.) The cabbie then launches into a long rant about people not being legally able to spank their kids (aside- I don't think that this really is the law anywhere), and how Savage is a smart guy because he has written books (I've never heard that argument before; maybe he hasn't read some of the books that I have) and that the country is in deep trouble because liberals and terrorists are out to get truth-tellers like Savage.
Fortunately, Portland Maine is not a big city and we arrived at the restaurant about then. We paid the cabbie and got into the restaurant as quickly as we could. So much for my attempt at dialogue. Perhaps the taxi is not really the best forum for such a discussion. Yet I feel strongly that I will continue to have interesting conversations with cabbies about special ed topics. By the way the lobster was fantastic!