This resolution was passed, with a proposed list of groups which would be acceptable to the School Board, thus totally smashing any thought that there could be an unbiased policy. Groups that the PPS board mentioned were: American Friends Service Committee, Military and Draft Counseling Project, Recruiter Watch PDX and Veterans for Peace. One person speaking in opposition to the resolution stated that this would open the door for numerous lawsuits as other groups request equal access for their group.
In place of a setting that would be impartial, this hearing was conducted in a tense atmosphere, charged with political innuendo. As I watch I wonder if other blue state cities are descending into left wing totalitarianism, where the police make a subjective determination of what conduct is promoting order and what is threatening it. If someone becomes emotional because they are no longer "politically correct", as determined by the local officials, is this a threat to order? Is the person who has traditionally been observant of laws and then finds the politicians have turned the tables on him/her, suddenly a threat to safety?

PORTLAND, Ore. – Antiwar protesters could get the green light to go into Portland public schools and meet with students.

The Portland Public Schools Board will vote on the proposal Monday night and is expected to pass it.

If approved, antiwar protesters will have the same school access as military recruiters and will allow those groups to pitch their antimilitary message to students.

At high schools, students will get a packet of information from those "counter-recruiter" groups like War Resisters League.

Then, just as often as the military comes into schools twice a year, those groups would be allowed in as well.

Some parents say this would be a welcome change and military recruiters said they're not worried.

Jessica Applegate-Brown supports counter-recruiting because she said the district's message about the military has been one-sided, starting at the elementary age.

She says, starting with trips to the local armory, her kids were exposed to a pro-military point of view early on but what they don’t get to hear is a very important other side.
"We want transparency," she said. "We want children to be notified of other options besides the military."

U.S. Army Lt. Col. Thom Cowson said he hopes this doesn't turn into an "us versus them" issue, and he said he and other military recruiters won't mind the extra company, even if it is a counter-recruiting message.

"When it comes right down to it, we'll have the same access to the schools," Cowson said. "The same kids who are interested in the military will still be interested in the military, and I welcome them to give the other kids who aren’t interested, another set of options."

He said he doesn't think it will affect his recruiting efforts.

"A person who's made up their mind that they want to do this is still going to (join the military)."

And parents like Applegate-Brown say hearing from both sides will help students make the most informed decision possible.