Tyranny of the Majority
One of the best news programs out there is This American Life. Sometimes the stories are a bit on the silly side, but every so often, they have some gripping story that you have to listen to from beginning to end.
This week’s story is one such story.
The story is about the takeover of a public school district in New York State by a certain group of people. The East Ramapo School District has over the last few years become a war zone between two groups, one that has all the power-literally, and one that has no power. The description of the episode tells it all:
We take it for granted that the majority calls the shots. But in one NY school district, that idea — majority rules — has led to an all-out war. School board disputes are pretty common, but not like this one. This involves multimillion-dollar land deals, lawyers threatening to beat up parents, felony criminal charges, and the highest levels of state government.
The group that has taken over the school district with devastating results are a community of Hasidic Jews. The story is a clash between the religious and secular, a story of anti-Semitism- real and imagined and public and private schools.
Listen to the story. I warn you, your blood will boil by the end.