Criticism on a Plate

Update (23-5-2014)

Through investigations conducted on the 28th of February 2014 as a result of proceedings between us and a number of different parties in relation to defamation, we have discovered that many of the links contained herein are to posts that had been taken down around that time. These links will remain broken and we will not make any attempt to re-link them until such time as these proceedings have concluded.

Your methods would, if you actually got that movie of yours finished and watched by anyone, sabotage criticism of Steiner/waldorf education for years to come. You’re handing the waldorf movement the opportunity to dismiss — to laugh at — criticism on a plate.Alicia Hamberg

We had just taken our Open Letter to the critics off the home page of our website when we stumbled onto this website:

Alicia Hamberg’s posting ‘Change’ which she wrote having banned us from her blog, in fury, has now surfaced on an obviously pro-Steiner website. Not only that, but the site’s entry links directly to her extremely agressive pronouncement about us, our children and our experience with the Titirangi Rudolf Steiner School.

This means that we were right to be concerned about the lack of critical thinking behind her actions.  It also means that Alicia Hamberg’s position, as put forward in the post, and as I predicted, is proving to be attractive to pro-Steiner people. 

And of course it is, because what’s in question as far as Human Rights are concerned is whether the school has caused a breach in Human Rights law by expelling three children because they wanted to get rid of the parents.  There is no nice way to say that, and it is obviously true, by the school’s own admission. 

Further evidence of people thinking that this was a good way to behave is obviously going to appeal to the Steiner movement, and why should they be fussy where that comes from?

In actual fact though, Alicia’s comment (the only one we’re actually flagging up here - we’re not bothering with all the mobbing and flaming, just this one comment), is directly relevant to the Human Rights issue since it begs exactly the same question.

The discrimination known as family-status discrimination says that you cannot discriminate against people “being a relative of a particular person”.  Both the school and now Alicia Hamberg are doing exactly that.  And all the people who write on her blog are also all supporting her position whether they know that or not.

Should schools be able to terminate the education, relationships and community infrastructure of families because parents need to advocate for their children, where the family are following school policy and the schools themselves are not?  That is demonstrable in this case.

And if they shouldn’t, then why should anyone else, let alone someone considering themselves a critic of that school system, be able to publish hate-speech reveling in those actions committed against the small children of people she ‘despises’?

Moreover the only thing that we ever had a complaint about at that school was the bullying.  In all the time that we were there, 14 months, we never made any issue about anything else whatsoever. 

The fact that another mother took her children out just two weeks prior, which we were not informed about, a mother who had been trying to work with the very same teacher on tackling the bullying for years, should be enough to corroborate the bullying by a gang of 17 boys with a charismatic ringleader. 

But we have plenty more evidence, including of how the school tells parents who may enquire about the original publications on our protest site, that they had no problem at all with the children and it was ‘just a bit of teasing between girls’.

And that’s funny in an ironic kind of a way because on the internet, through the Steiner Critics themselves, I’ve had reason to discover that cyber bullying between girls can become something altogether much more bruising. 

So damaging in fact, that due to ‘despising’ us, Alicia Hamberg has written hate-speech about our family including our children, which at least one site promoting Steiner is now featuring.

What was that she said about handing it to them on a plate?

1861-2011 : 150 years of Rudolf Steiner

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