Tuesday, March 29, 2011

McDonnell’s Soap Box Jingle Contest

Governor McDonnell is concealing from the electorate that he is doing little meaningful about school safety by launching the “College Campus Safety and Violence Prevention Public Service Challenge”—a jingle contest.

Students are to create 30-second videos; something like soap commercials. The Office of Substance Abuse Prevention will narrow entries for online voting. Neither of the two Virginia school shooters were substance abusers.

Why the contest? First, to draw attention away from, and perhaps undercut, the ongoing lawsuit against high ranking Virginia Tech officials; second, to appear to be doing something meaningful, when in fact you are not; third, to avoid tackling continuing weaknesses in the law regarding campus safety; and fourth to cover-up the governor’s abysmal record as Attorney General during the Tech tragedy.

As Attorney General, McDonnell:

--Did not utter a word when Tech—within four days of the shooting—set up a Web site to defend the school’s president and police chief, but waited nearly four months to establish a Web site for the victims;

--Did not challenge Virginia Tech’s spending $600,000 of taxpayers’ money on a public relations agency to spin the tragedy to the school’s benefit;

--Did not recognize the errors in the Review Panel Report’s timeline of the tragedy. He remained silent when TriData was paid over $500,000 for the flawed report. He said nothing when TriData’s incompetence was rewarded with $75,000 for making some corrections. Contract law was probably broken;

--Did not object when a Tech official boasted about the school’s $1 billion capital campaign. Then, referring to the shooting, he added, “you can’t just wallow in it forever.” The bodies of the dead students and faculty weren’t even cold. He should have been fired. Family values—McDonnell style?

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