UnifiEd Needs An Education In Right, Wrong Ad Local Politics

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

 have run a campaign for political office, won and served on the Chattanooga City Council. I have also run a campaign for political office and lost.Those experiences teach you quick that being criticized comes with the territory, especially when you make a stand on principle. But what I have seen and heard about what UnifiEd did to School Board members Rhonda Thurman and Joe Smith crosses way over the line of basic human decency.

It was hard for me to understand what was going on at the end of last week because I thought UnifiEd was a group of people here who cared about helping public education be better, something we all want. What I now know is that UnifiEd was created in 2014 with politics in mind.

I didn't pay much attention in 2016 when some folks supported by people who support UnifiEd won a couple of School Board seats. That's not what is happening in 2018. First, I read about how the group hired a bunch of young people to promote the mayor of East Ridge against Commissioner Tim Boyd by knocking on doors, and that wasn't too well received. Then I learned that UnifiEd went all in to successfully remove Commissioner Greg Beck from office.

Then, I learned over the weekend that UnifiEd's first director came via the President Obama grassroots movement and the last from the campaign of Mayor Berke. All of that is politics, which seems to be what UnifiEd is really all about.

Any idea that UnifiEd is all about working with the community to improve schools went out the window for people like me when they said Rhonda Thurman and Joe Smith were dangerous and hateful just because they challenged what UnifiEd wants you to believe.

I know great Democrats and great Republicans in Hamilton County. None of these people would support this kind of behavior.

Manny Rico

Chattanooga  


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