The Professional Performing Arts School in New York City has reportedly invited ex-president Clinton to speak at the school's graduation ceremonies on June 26th. The puzzling decision ignited a nationwide protest in which Dulles NOW was invited to participate. The 1990 small public establishment offers young people from grade six to twelve a "unique opportunity to study the arts in a professional environment".
Why Bill Clinton? As unpleasant as it is to recall, school officials surely know that Mr. Clinton was impeached for perjury and obstruction of justice in a simple sexual harassment case and is widely regarded as a serial abuser of women. The PPAS officials are surely familiar with "Regulation of the Chancellor", Subsection A. No.3 of Section II, issued by the New York City Board of Education to outline the duties school officials have in matters of sexual misconduct.
It is reasonable to assume that because of their age, most of the PPAS students ignore the recorded facts surrounding the Clinton presidency and his departure from the White House. As such, the school is displaying callousness and contempt toward trusting adolescents who probably look forward to meeting a former United States president.
Many Americans are eager to turn the page on the Clinton era, a tragic and embarrassing chapter of our history. So are we. But we must not forget. Contrary to the foolhardy opinion of the capricious Senator Jeffords who said that rape was a "private matter", an inanity proudly endorsed by a man from an other era, journalist Dan Rather, the American people know very well that rape is a grave criminal offense. Most Americans know who Juanita Broaddrick is and most believe her story.
Numerous attempts to speak with the PPAS Principal Mindy Chermak failed. It is therefore fitting to contact New York City Public Schools Chancellor Harold Levy to ask him to remind Ms. Chermak of her responsibilities.
Students from the Professional Performing Arts School once gathered in Rome to sing for the Pope, an event none will ever forget. As they leave their institution, the graduates deserve better than to have to cheer an impeached politician. They have the right to remember their graduation with pride, unburdened by the eventual knowledge that on that special day, admired teachers did not hesitate to ridicule them.