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Louisiana teacher dismissed over anti-Obama cartoon

Robert Duncan, a Jr. High teacher, was dismissed earlier this month after six months of paid administrative leave after a parent took cell phone photos of two disturbing posters. One of the posters was a cartoon depicting Daffy Duck, Bugs Bunny and a caricature of Mitt Romney standing next to a poster stating “Obama Season” and a caricature of President Obama. The second poster appeared to be a photo of President Obama with a bullet hole in his temple.

The teacher was dismissed for dishonesty and “making a bad, incompetent” decisions to post the images. Colleagues tried to defend Duncan stating that political cartoons are apart of the curriculum and that it encourages students to express political viewpoints regardless of whether they were pro or anti-Obama.

More on the story is available in The Times Picayune here and here.

Controversial cartoon of President Obama
Controversial image of President Obama

Community Comments

#1 Pete McDonnell
August/28/2012
@ 12:34 pm

That second paragraph’s a hoot. Yes, I’d say showing a bullet hole in the President’s head is expressing an anti-Obama viewpoint, to say the least.

#2 Stephen Beals
August/28/2012
@ 1:07 pm

Is our children learning?

#3 Paul Fell
August/28/2012
@ 6:14 pm

I can’t believe the argument that the student simply happened to drop a magic marker on the photo. Give me a break!

Just a sidebar to this story… as a former public school art
teacher and college professor I recall that Louisiana has one of the worst school systems in the nation… just saying.

I’m surprised the school district actually found the collective courage to fire the idiot.

#4 Steve Hubbell
August/28/2012
@ 8:43 pm

After reading both articles, I still do not know what class Robert Duncan was teaching, or what the particular assignment was that produced the posters which were displayed.

“Duncan, a 55-year-old social studies teacher at Boyet Junior High, is fighting to win his job back after his issuing a political cartoon assignment to seventh graders in January led to several rabble-rousing pictures — one of which shows the president with what appears to be a bullet wound to the temple and another stating “Open Season” under a likeness of Obama.”

Better to censure those young students minds now, then they will fight less when the Obama administration attempts to bury the rest of the first ammendment for them……

#5 Dave Stephens
August/28/2012
@ 11:44 pm

They should spank the children who drew such violent images… That’ll teach ’em that violence is never the answer…

Wait a minute.

#6 Dan Collins
August/29/2012
@ 7:38 am

You would have gotten an ‘A’ in that class Hubbell which translates to an ‘F’ in real school.

#7 Mike Lester
August/29/2012
@ 8:27 am

Incredibly sad that America’s children are being “taught” by people who don’t know how. If this had been a math class and Johnny wrote “2+2=cow” would the teacher have hung it on the wall of the school? A dropped magic marker magically creates a bullet hole on the POTUS temple? Right, so let’s just hang it up like it was Jesus’ image on toast.

I agree w/ earlier post: that he was fired is not only a slam dunk but a miracle given the power of teachers unions. (fyi: we here in Atlanta are living thru one of the worst teachers cheating scandals in the HISTORY of America. Almost Sandusky in it’s child cruelty.)

But the irony of this story is it’s conjunction w/ the story out of Germany above, (“Hey, you.(Jesus) I f— your mother”). It proves that a kid like the one in Louisiana eventually grows up to become a full grown adult douche. Like the one in Germany.

#8 Terry LaBan
August/29/2012
@ 8:41 am

@ Mike Lester
Mike, you’re losing your edge. You used the article a jumping off point to make an entirely gratuitous swipe at teacher’s unions, yet missed the opportunity to slam European-style socialism.

#9 Dave Nelson
August/29/2012
@ 12:59 pm

To me, this seems like a really loaded situation. Asking already opinionated teens to create a political cartoon is asking for trouble. I work with teens a lot and subtlety is something acquired with age.

Once assigned, how do teachers explain taking down the offending works while defending the 1st amendment. Where do they draw the line? Is simply drawing a caricature “racist” or offensive?

If I was the administrator, I’d look for language in the school conduct code and have taken the posters down under those preset guidelines. If I was the teacher, hopefully I’d have explained the limitations inherent in the public school setting.

Perhaps I’m not reading enough of the articles but it kinda feels like the teacher was hung out to dry.

#10 Dru
October/2/2012
@ 4:31 pm

I’m more concerned about these kids.

These kids meant to send a message out against Obama, but didn’t realize they’ve made a huge, embarrassing statement about themselves and the state of our future.

We seem to be harboring a nation of stupid, violent, seething, and hateful miscreants who are to young too know anything about anything, but are already acting out on their misinformation, institutionalization, and things pumped into their heads. When called out on it, one of the miscreants didn’t even have the dignity to own it and take responsibility. The dishonorable punk bitch of a kid lied and made up a story that a marker fell on it. This is our future.

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