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Archive for Monday, November 28, 2011

Brownback apologizes for overreacting to student’s tweet

Gov. Sam Brownback, right, said his staff overreacted to a disparaging tweet from 18-year-old Emma Sullivan, left.

Gov. Sam Brownback, right, said his staff overreacted to a disparaging tweet from 18-year-old Emma Sullivan, left.

November 28, 2011, 12:05 p.m. Updated November 28, 2011, 3:04 p.m.

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— Facing ridicule on a national level, Gov. Sam Brownback on Monday issued an apology, saying his staff overreacted to a disparaging tweet about him written by a high school student.

Last week, Brownback’s staff, which monitors social media such as Facebook and Twitter, complained about a tweet written by Shawnee Mission East senior Emma Sullivan, 18.

That led to a trip to the principal’s office for Sullivan, who was scolded and told to write letters of apology.

What followed was a national fire storm, much of it critical of Brownback and the principal, Karl Krawitz. Brownback was accused of trying to intimidate a youngster, abridge freedom of speech, wasting taxpayer dollars by monitoring what was written about him and being paranoid.

On Monday, Brownback’s office released a prepared statement.

“My staff overreacted to this tweet, and for that I apologize. Freedom of speech is among our most treasured freedoms,” Brownback said.

The incident began last week when Sullivan was among a group of students at the Statehouse for a Youth in Government program.

Brownback, a Republican, was addressing the group. Sullivan, who describes herself as a Democrat and who recently registered to vote, tweeted from her cellphone, “Just made mean comments at gov. brownback and told him he sucked, in person #heblowsalot.”

Shawnee Mission East senior Emma Sullivan, 18, tweeted on Sunday that she did not intend to apologize. On Monday, Gov. Brownback apologized for overreacting.

Shawnee Mission East senior Emma Sullivan, 18, tweeted on Sunday that she did not intend to apologize. On Monday, Gov. Brownback apologized for overreacting.

She actually did not say that, and later said she was “just joking with friends.”

When the governor’s office saw the tweet during monitoring of social media comments, it was reported to Youth in Government officials.

Brownback’s spokeswoman, Sherriene Jones-Sontag, said at the time, “It was important for the organization to be aware of the comments their students were making. It’s also important for students to recognize the power of social media, how lasting it is. It is on the Internet.”

She added of Sullivan’s tweet, “That wasn’t respectful. In order to really have a constructive dialogue, there has to be mutual respect.”

Sullivan said she landed in the principal’s office for nearly an hour and was told she had embarrassed her school and district. Principal Krawitz told her to write a letter of apology. At first Sullivan said that she would but that she wasn’t sorry. Then she refused to apologize, and the Shawnee Mission school district earlier Monday issued a statement saying she didn’t have to.

“The district acknowledges a student’s right to freedom of speech and expression is constitutionally protected,” the district’s statement said, adding, “The issue has resulted in many teachable moments concerning the use of social media.”

On Monday, it was Brownback who was apologizing.

In his statement, Brownback said, “I enjoyed speaking to the more than 100 students who participated in the Youth in Government Program at the Kansas Capitol. They are our future.

“I also want to thank the thousands of Kansas educators who remind us daily of our liberties, as well as the values of civility and decorum. Again, I apologize for our over-reaction.”

The “overreaction” certainly added to Sullivan’s popularity. Before the incident, she had about 65 Twitter followers. By mid-afternoon Monday, she had more 10,000, or more than three times as many as Brownback.

For Brownback, it was the second time in less than three weeks he has suffered an embarrassing incident.

On Nov. 7, Brownback held a news conference to introduce Jim Mann as his new chief information technology officer. The next day, Mann resigned under pressure after it was discovered he had listed on his resume a degree he received from a diploma mill. Brownback had conceded his staff did not look into Mann’s educational background.

Comments

TomJoad23 2 years, 4 months ago

the republican trolls on the LJworld threads are horrifying, i can't believe these people live in America, they would be better suited for Soviet Russia or Maoist China.

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sunny 2 years, 4 months ago

She's a disrespectful spoiled brat! If this same situation would have happened to Sebelius there would have been an uproar from the libs!

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blindrabbit 2 years, 4 months ago

Sam had goose for Thanksgiving; and it was cooked! So sorry to hear of his misfortune.

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

BTW how can anyone respect the governors office when it is occupied by someone who doesn't respect the constitution?

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

BTW how can anyone respect the governors office when it is occupied by someone who doesn't respect the constitution?

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Angela Heili 2 years, 4 months ago

Brownback’s spokeswoman, Sherriene Jones-Sontag, said at the time, “It was important for the organization to be aware of the comments their students were making. It’s also important for students to recognize the power of social media, how lasting it is. It is on the Internet.”

Emphasis on, "how lasting it is. It's on the Internet.". I'm guessing right about now miss Jones-Sontag wishes this whole thing wasn't on the Internet! Apparently, she didn't think about that before the administration she's part of decided to make a big deal out of what one teenager said on a tweet.

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whats_going_on 2 years, 4 months ago

Supposed mature adults, in a frenzy over twitter. Yay for our country of dimwits.

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John Pearson 2 years, 4 months ago

Why is the state paying someone to monitor his traffic on Twitter? We can't pay for schools, the arts or anything else but the staff is hot on the trail of Twitter?

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verity 2 years, 4 months ago

Doesn't matter if Ms Sullivan is a snotty little brat or if she is a hero. That is completely beside the point.

This is about freedom of speech.

Whether Brownback knew about what was happening or not, he is the person who appointed his staff and ultimately is responsibile for what they do. The fact that Brownback's administration did this is really creepy and scarey. He only apologized for damage control. I doubt the intimidation will stop---they might be a littlel more subtle about it. The fear of people who work for the state is still there. Nothing really has changed except that people all over the world are aware of what's going on and hopefully we in Kansas will be more watchful of our freedoms and of what Brownback is trying to do.

Quit quibling about whether Ms Sulivan was wrong or right and do your homework. This man wants a theocracy for the U.S. Those of you who want that---just study history a bit. It may not be the religion you want that takes or remains in control.

Brownback is not a conservative.

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kernal 2 years, 4 months ago

Wonder if guv's staff added another staffer to follow comments under the new moniker of blowsalot.

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stevewonder 2 years, 4 months ago

Take Brownback to the Woodshed! America's not commie China, Governor--Love America or Leave it, Brownback!

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demonfury 2 years, 4 months ago

You aren't going to see an apology to this girl from Brownback. His apology was nothing more than a political posturing move. I'll be watching Johnson County in the near future to see what kind of punishment Brownback imposes on them for this girl's ignorance and total disrespect. I don't have a problem with her expressing her opinion, but doing so like she did is completely inappropriate, especially during a school function where she is to be learning about such things. You've already seen the wrath of Sam in Lawrence and Douglas County because of the election results. This girl's actions have likely written a very large check that Johnson County will be forced to cash. Sammy will getcha !!! It's just a matter of time.

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sad_lawrencian 2 years, 4 months ago

My comments regarding Brownback's handling of this entire affair, as well as his general attitude toward/handling of the Office of Governor, is that he's treating his position as if he were still a U.S. senator. A senator's office would be monitoring social networking and search engines. A senator's office would be concerned about cutting pork like arts funding. A senator's office would be interested in kowtowing to the "Christian" far-right fringe of the Republican Party. You can't expect the man who served fourteen years in the United States Senate to come to this office and knock it out of the ballpark. We must resign ourselves to accept gaffes, overreaching, paranoia, intolerance and just plain stupidity until this governor can be voted out of office.

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Gary Denning 2 years, 4 months ago

At first, Brownback looked like a paranoid politician who was wasting taxpayer dollars by reviewing the tweets of silly high school girls and over-reacting to them. Now, in addition to that, he looks weak.

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optimist 2 years, 4 months ago

I think what has been lost in all of this is that this child was extremely disrespectful, immature and frankly she is a liar. You have all fallen prey to her plan to draw attention to herself through bad behavior. This is not a defense of the Governor's staff because we can all agree that the staffer’s response was inappropriate. It is also illogical to think the Governor was in any way involved in the decision to respond to this child’s bad behavior either. He however is responsible for correcting this issue given that he is the adult in the equation but he shouldn’t apologize to this brat.

This child had an opportunity to meet the Governor and rather than show respect she behaved poorly. If she were my child regardless of what I thought of the Governor I would be embarrassed by this and would have punished her rather than reward her with media interviews. I hope there are better representatives for her generation than she has been.

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sad_lawrencian 2 years, 4 months ago

The poster above (kansanjayhawk) called a KC radio show yesterday and conveyed the exact same comment(s). To my surprise, the talk show hosts stood up for the young woman's right to express herself. The right to free speech trumps "respect [for] the office that is being represented". Furthermore, the "girl" in this situation an eighteen-year-old woman: a legal adult. The parents/school have nothing to do with it.

"We lower our own discourse when we simply attack the other person not based upon any issue [or] argument." What are you saying? The young woman did not have a valid argument? She wasn't attacking any particular issue? I could identify at least two issues the young woman was addressing.

The fact that Brownback's office overreached, and the school district/principal overreacted, is a very serious issue that demands attention. "We need to teach our youth to... respect... all of our leaders... I think Governor Brownback is doing a fine job representing Kansans." No. In my opinion, Brownback is not representing Kansans, at least not the Kansans I know.

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consumer1 2 years, 4 months ago

Thanks to Brownback he taught this young woman something her Parents obvously never learned. That is respect for authority. Brownback showed her it takes a larger person to step forward and show responsibility in spite of the poor parenting she recieved.

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yourworstnightmare 2 years, 4 months ago

Pass the Orville Redenbacher.

Popcorn, anyone?

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KansasPerson 2 years, 4 months ago

Even if we accept the reasoning that the governor's staff was at fault (not the governor himself), that leaves me with the question -- why on earth is your staff trained to act this way? Or did you just make a point of hiring extra-paranoid people? Oh wait, they're not paranoid -- they're just concerned about the morals and manners of our state's high-school seniors. I don't recall the parents of Kansas hiring extra people to help raise their children, but there you are. And I thought it was the ultra-conservatives that were against the "nanny state."

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KansasPerson 2 years, 4 months ago

There is still something fishy about the original story.

Jones-Sontag monitors the daily chatter; saw this tweet; reported it. I get it so far.

But then, please notice that "it was reported to the Youth in Government officials."

I do not know how much extra homework Jones-Sontag had to do to discover that @emmakate988 was involved in Youth in Government, but obviously there was some extra peeking involved, since the original tweet said nothing about it.

Doesn't anyone else think this is weird?

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heygary 2 years, 4 months ago

"Snotty little brat" ... I concur! She tweets a lie to her friends (attention seeking behavior) ... it explodes in her face and she considers an apology ... then she gets national attention so she attempts to wrap in in the nobility of the 1st Amendment (more attention seeking behavior). Emma is emblomatic of the shallowness of most that carry the liberal banner.

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friendlyjhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

This story is BIG because the media picked up on it and blew it out of portion. The kid, tho 18, did a kid thing, wrote something and when called on it said "just kidding." The Brownstaffer jerked his/her knee too quickly and made a stupid call to the school principal who also over reacted. If the press had left it alone this story wouldn't have spread around the states making Kansas look bad. The press has also tried to make this child look like a 1st amendment hero and has reinforced the prominent notion in the USA that it is perfectly ok after making a stupid mistake writing something untrue to say JUST KIDDING instead of "Yeah, that was a mistake." Too many real problems have with resulted with real criminals blue and white collar saying "I didn't mean it" (another form of just kidding). The press is keeping this little story alive. BTW I am not one of Brownie's supported and I'm not kidding.

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woodscolt 2 years, 4 months ago

"Why is this such an issue; big deal;".........

Because it has far reaching ramifications. If brownback is willing to do this, what else is he willing to do? Trampling freedom of speech is a big deal in this country. When it ceases to be a big deal than this country will become a very different country. A lot of people have died trying to preserve the values of this country. Thats a big deal. Lots of politicians are undermining this and you are seeing people making a "big deal" out of it.

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Steve Miller 2 years, 4 months ago

I guess the truth hurts, doesn't it browny ...

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bootlegger 2 years, 4 months ago

Why is this such an issue; big deal; ...........isn't there more important matters in kansas then this? w.t.f.

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nativeson 2 years, 4 months ago

Give Brownback an element of credit. He acknowledged the mistake made by his communications team, and he took responsibility for the overreaction. It was a bad move by his staff, and he was willing to acknowldege the issue without any qualification.

The bigger issue remains why he continues to have missteps in staffing and communications that seem to be easy to avoid. As a conservative, he is already going to create controversy on issues that are important. These type of events just make his ability to create any real change less likely.

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woodscolt 2 years, 4 months ago

Its funny how many of the posters (pretending to be adults) on these related threads couldn't be adult enough to acknowledge that the actions of the governor were far below acceptable, (while the majority of the rest of the nation figured it out very quickly) and have to continue to show their immaturity and continue to behave in a manner very unbecoming to them as adults.

Your wrong on this one, be a grown up and admit it and quit wallowing around in the hole you dug yourself into, or continue to show the rest of us your true colors. Wouldn't admit you were wrong even if the majority of the entire country knows you were wrong. At least sam figured out what he had to do on this one. Get over it and finally grow up before its to late for you.

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mloburgio 2 years, 4 months ago

Gandalf He still hasn't apologized to Emma!

he never will he is a man and women summit to the MAN!

you have to love chrisitan republicans, they hate in the name of god!

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 4 months ago

"Emma looks like a snotty little brat"

You know that just by looking at someone?

I would still say that even snotty little brats have access to freedom of speech in a country that portrays itself as a democracy.

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oldvet 2 years, 4 months ago

Emma looks like a snotty little brat... but that's just my opinion and I would appologize to her for calling her a snotty little brat but then I wouldn't really mean it so I won't.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 4 months ago

Emma has the right to make comments = the bottom line.

Meanwhile this is still making national news which reveals to so many others how the RINO's push big government in spite of their rhetoric. Intrusion in our private lives is truly big government extreme.

There is no doubt if Emma Sullivan needed financial support for a legal defense donations would come. The Emma Sullivan Legal Defense Fund would be an example of how the majority of Americans do not appreciate the intrusion of "big government" in a democracy that preaches Freedom of Speech.

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clorox 2 years, 4 months ago

Governor your staff is a bunch o fking white racist extremists religious group of idiots that want to control everybody thoughts and actions. Fk you, Rush Limbaugh, Hannity, and all those other morons. . I love the first amendment.

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clorox 2 years, 4 months ago

Governor your staff is a bunch o fking white racist extremists religious group of idiots that want to control everybody thoughts and actions. Fk you, Rush Limbaugh, Hannity, and all those other morons. . I love the first amendment.

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Setshot 2 years, 4 months ago

Every apology is damage control...sorta by definition...move on.

While I agree Emma was likely engaging in "normal high school joking", I still have trouble not assigning lots of blame on her. Make no difference what you think about Brownback, she was in the wrong and needs to own it. Maybe its old school but 'round here, we still teach our kids to treat others with respect and that you should never text/email/tweet anything that you wouldn't say to someone's face.

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Shelley Bock 2 years, 4 months ago

This issue made papers and even into radio news broadcasts on stations other than the BBC in London, England.

Here's a link to the Guardian article. It's a rehash of other reports, but I'm sorry to see that Kansas gets noted in such a way:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/nov/28/kansas-governor-overreacts-to-tweet

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pace 2 years, 4 months ago

I hope that Emma and Sam can be fb friends, though he probably should not follow her on twitter.

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fanaddict 2 years, 4 months ago

The school board meeting tonight was interesting...a parent asking for answers.

@ the 16 minute mark

http://www.smsd.org/flash/boe2011-11-28/

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Jimo 2 years, 4 months ago

“My staff over-reacted to this tweet, and for that I apologize. Freedom of speech is among our most treasured freedoms,” Brownback said.

Apologize to whom? The air?

“The district acknowledges a student’s right to freedom of speech and expression is constitutionally protected,” the district’s statement said, adding, “The issue has resulted in many teachable moments concerning the use of social media.”

Translation: Please don't sue us.

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verity 2 years, 4 months ago

This is damage control, pure and simple. Brownback lost this one big time. He didn't even take responsibility---he blamed it on his staff---and it wasn't really an apology. If he had continued to fight, he would just have looked the bigger fool.

Whether Emma Sullivan was acting badly by her tweet is completely and totally irrelevant. The powers that be thought they could bully a young woman and send a message of intimidation. They sent a message alright and got one sent right back to them. Don't try to mess with our freedom of speech!

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

Gotta feel a little sorry for guv blowsalot. All he wants is to be a king or a dictator. Damn that constitution thing!

but, but, but...they can get away with this in china. :(

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overplayedhistory 2 years, 4 months ago

"I am sorry Emma, for not being able to limit your speech, but them ovaries are still mine. I win" Sam B

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Stain 2 years, 4 months ago

http://www.cnn.com/2011/11/28/us/kansas-high-schooler-tweet/index.html?hpt=hp_t1

Apparently Brownback's statement was in response to a call from CNN to comment on this. It wasn't spontaneous at all!

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wtchdr46 2 years, 4 months ago

I don't often say much in here, but I do want to put forth the idea that all of this smokescreen is only the tip of the iceberg. Freedoms are under assault on all fronts, this just provides a focus. It is a symptom of the times

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Stain 2 years, 4 months ago

Damage control, but a little too late. This was about to his the fan, nationally. What are we, Nazi Germany now? Must not disrespect the Fuhrer? Sheesh.

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riverdrifter 2 years, 4 months ago

It is official: an 18-year old schoolgirl (whodathunkit) has pinned a clown suit on the guvner and it fits him perfectly. Said being did damage control 48 hours late. Just a total PR boob.

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pace 2 years, 4 months ago

Glad he apologized. Sorry the buck stops at staff, If Sherriene Jones-Sontag is as bad at her job as she seems, maybe she could get a new job in Florida.

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beatrice 2 years, 4 months ago

Unfortunately, I had Herman Cain in the "Name the next Republican who will have to apologize to a young woman for inappropriate behavior" pool.

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johnny5 2 years, 4 months ago

Of course Emma hasn't received an apology from Gov. Brownback and probably never will. Gov. Brownback has too much pride to do that. Without his policies this incident would have never taken place. The governor needs to grow a spine and learn to own up to issues such as this instead of blaming others. Then again, I'm sure this is asking for the impossible.

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 4 months ago

If the Gov. were to eat a boiled egg, in two days there would be 600 posts by the usual crew of losers on this award-winning website whining about whether he should have started peeling it from the small end or the big end.Tempest, meet teapot.

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blindrabbit 2 years, 4 months ago

Take the money wasted by the Governors lackey and apply it to restoring the Kansas Art's Commission funding. Monies spent on this plus the James Mann debacle would more than cover the restoration.

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Chris Golledge 2 years, 4 months ago

Allow me to paraphrase:

"District officials have reviewed recent events surrounding the reported tweet by Shawnee Mission East High School student Emma Sullivan. The district acknowledges a student's right to freedom of speech and expression is constitutionally protected."

We have found that the taste of our own feet is not very good.

"The district has not censored Miss Sullivan nor infringed upon her freedom of speech. She is not required to write a letter of apology to the Governor. Whether and to whom any apologies are issued will be left to the individuals involved."

We would like to pretend the whole thing never happened.

"The issue has resulted in many teachable moments concerning the use of social media. The district does not intend to take any further action on this matter."

Holy shiitake mushrooms; didn't see that coming. We really hope that if we drop the matter, everyone else will too.

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Armstrong 2 years, 4 months ago

The life of this story is ending in 3 2 1


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tange 2 years, 4 months ago

Bozo is correct in pointing out that, after all, Brownback did the necessary thing. Insofar as Brownback is a conservative, it can be said that he did the 'right' thing. I was greatly relieved and pleased to learn of this development, it would probably not be appropriate to gloat. That said...

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observant 2 years, 4 months ago

Now if he would simply apologize for being Brownback and then disappear.

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bevy 2 years, 4 months ago

Now if we could just get him to apologize to the rest of us!

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its_just_math 2 years, 4 months ago

Wow! About a 1000 comments in 5 days on 4 stories by the same few dozen regulars.

obsession: the domination of one's thoughts or feelings by a persistent idea, image, desire, etc.

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Steve Bunch 2 years, 4 months ago

SM School District has told Emma that she does not need to apologize. The principal is strangely silent. Perhaps he received a scolding from central admin similar to the one he gave Emma.

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My_Life 2 years, 4 months ago

Jesus doesn't like Gov Brownback. He told me so.

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

guv blowsalot has still not apologized to the one who deserves it. He has restored my faith in his pettiness and proven once again he speaks with forked tongue!

I knew he could not handle an apology to a girl. Bring out the burkas!

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prospector 2 years, 4 months ago

Brownspeak for the lawyers say I better cut my loses.

Put the map down dude, you are in the ditch.

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beatrice 2 years, 4 months ago

It would be interesting to know how the idea for a letter of apology came about in the first place. Was it the principal's idea all on his own, or was he basing his request to the student on a suggestion by someone in the Governor's office?

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

Emma reject the apology until he mentions you personally!

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

Hey I just reread the governors statement. His "apology" did not mention Emma's name anywhere.

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beatrice 2 years, 4 months ago

People should still question the Governor about how much staff time (taxpayer dollars) is spent on tracking social media. It should also be asked to what end is social media searched: What is he hoping to find by having his people search for his name?

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ThePilgrim 2 years, 4 months ago

That principal wasn't reminding the student of her liberties - just the opposite. I think that she deserves an apology from the principal as well. And maybe a reprimand to him from the school board.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 4 months ago

Sam Brownback is a threat to democracy,free speech,women's rights and public education. Gov. Sam Brownback should resign.

The student should be held in high esteem for standing her ground.

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

jaywalker? jaywalker? Where are you? Did your "boss" tell you to shut up?

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Gandalf 2 years, 4 months ago

Damn I hate it's all over. I still have some popcorn left! Now that guv blowsalot has publically apologized, I wonder if he has sent her a personal apology? That might bring some big bucks on Ebay. A genuine 1 of a kind document with historical value. Wonder how high he would go to get it back?

I wonder if the guv meant it or he was just forced. :)

Where are all the conservative detracters of Emma now? Cat got all their tonges?

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 2 years, 4 months ago

puss, Her name is listed on her twitter account, the same as mine is, the @handle can be something entirely different... Or not.

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pusscanthropus 2 years, 4 months ago

Wasn't Emma's privacy invaded when Jones-Scumbag used her political authority to get her name from her twitter account. Since her name was not obvious, how else could she have been identified? Could Emma sue for invasion of privacy...just wondering...

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gracecountry62 2 years, 4 months ago

Young Liberal at her best just another reminder of how reconnected our youth are, freedom of speech comes with responsibility has her parents taught her that? No but they are teaching her socialism ,I think I seen her at the serving line at the local salvation Army they were passing out bars of soap for the Wall street occupy loony's wonder if she received hers.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 4 months ago

If I were a parent with a child in that high school I would be calling for the resignation of that principal.

The principal does not answer to Sam Brownback who BTW is quite a corrupt person.

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chetrico79 2 years, 4 months ago

I'm only guessing here, but I'll bet Karl R. Krawitz's nose is brown(back). When he wasn't hiding under his desk today, KRK was rapidly backpedaling through the hallways. Hurray for Emma, a person of honesty, humor and courage!

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none2 2 years, 4 months ago

Sherriene Jones-Sontag needs to be fired. Let her spend her monitoring time on the beaches of Florida or wherever she came from.

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grammaddy 2 years, 4 months ago

I'm betting he saw her Facebook page. One guy from the ACLU offered to handle her case if the apology issue was forced . And many fans of the page wrote letters to her Principal.

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tolawdjk 2 years, 4 months ago

In rethinking this, and only seeing what is printed in the press, I don't think Brownback has the largest burden here. Sure, he is the most visible face, but his team only -reported- the tweet.

It was the principal that seems to have gone the extra mile and required the apology. If he had only required her to apologize for breaking school rules about cell phone usage or something similar, it would have blown over.

No, he wanted her to do it because he, or someone pulling his strings, was of the opinion that -her- speech was wrong.

I'm guessing that the atmosphere at that high school is going to be decidedly different from here on out.

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Steve Bunch 2 years, 4 months ago

Hate to see Brownback gain the high ground on this. Still waiting for an apology from the cowardly principal.

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a_flock_of_jayhawks 2 years, 4 months ago

For once, the Gov did the right thing and I commend him. His staff are childish and just show a glimpse of the juvenile tactics they employ in their brand of "public service". They should be ashamed, but they won't be.

I've saved the harshest criticism for Herr Principal. His response was the most pivotal in this crash and burn. He is supposed to set an example and he owes everyone top to bottom a HUGE apology for the way he handled it.

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lgreen17 2 years, 4 months ago

I think it's interesting to note that the husband of Sherrie Jones-Sontag, the woman who "over-reacted," is the president of the Kansas chapter of American's for Prosperity. The people who are for LIMITED government. Guess it's only limited when it's their rights or property?

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blindrabbit 2 years, 4 months ago

If Emma is concerned about returning to Shawnee Mission East, let her dis-enroll there and transfer to Lawrence's Free State. The dichotomy of the schools could not be greater; SME is part of the tight-arsed Johnson County right-wing 1%'ers, whereas Free State is probably the most progressive school in the state in a much more homogenous setting, and her views will be appreciated.. I hope she reconsiders her decision to attend U. of Arkansas; talk about Conservatism.

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observant 2 years, 4 months ago

Why is jonesy still employed?

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blindrabbit 2 years, 4 months ago

Probably screws up his plans for Kansas's Kristalnacht, Book Burning, and minority suppression it appears that his version of the "Night of the Long Knives" is alive and well.

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Paul R Getto 2 years, 4 months ago

kansanjayhawk (anonymous) says… "I have always taught my children to respect the office......P.S. I think Governor Brownback is doing a fine job representing Kansans who hold conservative values and beliefs!" ==== Good points. Would that Muscular Sam were a conservative. He passed that marker long ago when he joined up with the C-Street Cult.

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Amy Heeter 2 years, 4 months ago

Thanks Sam, now we can all forget this.

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ibroke 2 years, 4 months ago

you screaming libs are funny today!!!! LMAO

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autie 2 years, 4 months ago

He has been dubbed a knight. Arise Sir blowsalot. Go forth in search of the grail.

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kansanjayhawk 2 years, 4 months ago

I have always taught my children to respect the office that is being represented. No matter who is currently the President we show respect to that person because we respect the office of the presidency. The same, of course, applies here to the office of Governor and one would hope that the school and the girls parents communicate that to her. We lower our own discourse when we simply attack the other person not based upon any issue any argument. We need to teach our youth to show respect for all of our leaders, even if, sometimes they do not seem to earn the respect.
P.S. I think Governor Brownback is doing a fine job representing Kansans who hold conservative values and beliefs!

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Jan Rolls 2 years, 4 months ago

I guess he never heard of the phrase "The buck stops here." I guess someone had to explain freedom of speech to him. Very funny watching the story on CNN this morning. So bottom line has he disbanded the "tweet patrol" or will he continue to gather names for his "hit" list.

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woodscolt 2 years, 4 months ago

"The part I'm most nervous about is going back to school and facing him." Emma Sullivan

This is the best way to deal with these bullys. You are in the right and to apologize because the bullys have demanded it is pure BS on brownbacks part. Your principal is a coward for not sticking up for you. The guv and the principle are going to get tarred and feathered in the peoples court. If they chose to make it rough on you for your decision, you may be harmed in the short term but they will loose in the long run. You will come out on top because you are in the right. Hold your ground on this one. I predict your the one who gets the apology. november 27, 2011 at 11:49 pm

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 2 years, 4 months ago

Even though Brownback is responsible for whatever his staff does on his behalf, he likely didn't have any prior knowledge of how they reacted to this tweet.

So to be fair, we have to give credit where it's due. Brownback did the right thing here. Let's hope he and his staff learned something from this.

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somedude20 2 years, 4 months ago

of all the things to be sorry about! be sorry to the hundreds, if not thousands of people (little cute babbies, cute old people, small puppies) that will die, become sick or homeless due to your policies

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Floyd Craig 2 years, 4 months ago

well mr brownback that person was trying to get brownie points to get more favors and you need to stop with those as its cost a lot of kansasn's jobs for get your so calld friends and leave the ones who has been with the staet for yrs alone

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rockchalker52 2 years, 4 months ago

He took the shortest path away from the painted corner he was in. He can blame his his staff, but it's his policy that enabled this fiasco.

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ignatius_j_reilly 2 years, 4 months ago

As someone who has been a constant critic of Brownback, on this issue and others, I must say this is surprising coming from him, and it's a welcome gesture.

That said, it may haven't been an option, given the amazing Internet feedback to this.

Publications that have picked up this story, besides the local media: Slate, Salon, ABC, Miami Herald, AP, Washington Post, CNN, Politico, NPR, The Atlantic, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Sun-Times, Forbes, CBS, New York Daily News.

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SpicePirate 2 years, 4 months ago

I love all the "they"s and the "our", in regards to the overreaction. The DB can't even own up to being a creepy *&^%head.

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pusscanthropus 2 years, 4 months ago

Hey guv, you need to get rid of Jones-Scumbag. OH...on second though, keep her and let her continue to make (more of) a fool of you.

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Starlight 2 years, 4 months ago

Too bad South Park isn't in production right now.

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Bushloather1 2 years, 4 months ago

Here's Governor HeBlowsALot His reputation's kind of shot Is for free speech? No he's not He's Governor HeBlowsALot

Emma tweeted to some friends But that's not where our story ends She was told to make amends But fascism does this portend.

We still have free speech (if barely) Brownback's simply not aware, he Told Emma "Make nice or we Will make things very hard for thee".

Exactly how does Brownback blow? I'm so glad you'd like to know! He's not that famous yet and so It's off to Google I will go.

Wikipedia says that he Is anti-choice for you and me And Kansas has no arts agency (The only state like that, you see).

Perry gathered folks to pray Only Brownback showed that day All other pols just stayed away What else do I have to say?

Brownback thinks a flat tax is fair (It hurts the poor, but he don't care) If you're in Kansas please beware 'Cause Brownback is the gov'nor there.

So, we see Emma was right And we hope she wins her fight Casting Brownback in the light. Will surely bring us much delight

-Plf515

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prospector 2 years, 4 months ago

Throw Sherriene under the bus!

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prospector 2 years, 4 months ago

Take Sherriene to the woodshed!

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