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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013

    More Than 1,750 Sign Petition Against Michelle Obama’s HS Commencement Speech — But N

    More Than 1,750 Sign Petition Against Michelle Obama’s HS Commencement Speech — But Not for the Reasons You’re Thinking

    Apr. 19, 2014 8:38pm
    Dave Urbanski

    More than 1,700 people as of Saturday night have signed an online petition that asks a Kansas school district to reconsider its plans to have Michelle Obama speak at a high school commencement next month.
    Image source: AP/Susan Walsh, File

    But it’s not because of political differences. It’s because many believe the first lady’s appearance could drastically limit seating for a ceremony that’s already looking like standing-room only.
    The Topeka school district is holding one mass graduation ceremony for five area high schools in an 7,450-capacity arena. Obama’s address at the May 17 commencement is closely tied to the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education outlawing segregation in schools.
    Graduating seniors from Topeka Unified School District 501 will be allotted up to six tickets apiece for friends and relatives, according to the Topeka Capital-Journal.
    District spokesman Ron Harbaugh on Saturday told the Capital-Journal that If the Secret Service gives the OK, additional seats could open up beyond the 6,486 available in the regular stands. There are also more seats behind the stage.
    The senior who started the petition, Taylor Gifford, 18, said her initial reaction to the Michelle Obama news was excitement, even noting she was “freaking out” about it, the Associated Press reported.
    But when rumors of limited tickets surfaced, Gifford said the focus seemed to shift from the students to Obama.
    “People think it’s a great opportunity, but it’s the graduates’ time. They are getting that diploma that they worked so hard for,” Gifford told the AP. “Families are feeling that they are being cheated out of the loved ones special day.”

    “She doesn’t know our kids.”

    Abbey Rubottom, 18, a Topeka High senior, described herself to the AP as a “die-hard Democrat” but doesn’t like the idea of Obama sharing the stage with graduates.
    “No disrespect for the first lady, and it’s amazing that she wants to come speak, I just think it doesn’t belong at graduation,” Rubottom told the AP.
    One parent couldn’t agree more.
    “This is one of the biggest days of their lives,” said Tina Hernandez, a single mother of Topeka High School senior Dauby Knight, told the AP. “They’ve taken the glory and shine from the children and put on Mrs. Obama. She doesn’t know our kids.”
    There has been discussion about an overflow room at a hotel adjacent to the graduation arena for those unable to find a seat inside. Rubottom suggested separate ceremonies with Obama speaking at one and the address being replayed at the other, the AP noted.
    Messages seeking comment from the first lady’s office in Washington were not immediately returned Friday.
    // ]=]=>

    video at link below

    And more from this link

    Michelle Obama wreaks havoc across Topeka with last-minute decision to speak at graduation

    8:38 AM 04/19/2014

    Michelle Obama is rested, ready and screwing up a bunch of ordinary people’s lives again.
    Fresh off a luxurious vacation to China (which was fresh off a long vacation at Oprah’s Maui home), the first lady has threatened hassle and hardship upon hundreds of students and their families in Topeka, Kan. with a last-minute announcement of her intention to speak at a combined graduation ceremony for the city’s five public high schools.
    School district officials deserve just as much blame for the developing fiasco—possibly more. They invited Obama to speak at the May 17 graduation back in December, reports The Topeka Capital-Journal.
    The reason for the invitation is the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that declared separate-but-equal public education unconstitutional.
    “It really is a historical day,” Topeka school superintendent Julie Ford said when she announced the exciting news on Thursday. “We couldn’t be more happy.”
    Turns out, though, a large number of students and their families were far happier before the announcement, which will necessitate the combined graduation and move it to the Kansas Expocentre, a 10,000-seat multi-purpose arena.
    The new graduation venue will severely limit the number of family members and friends who can attend the mass commencement. (It should also make for a staggeringly longer ceremony.)
    Normally, graduating seniors across Topeka’s five high schools can invite anyone they want to their big days. It’s not a bidg deal. However, this year promises to be much different.

    Armed Forces Day 2014, May 17, 2014 Wonder if she will force herself on them?????

    Last edited by kathyet2; 04-22-2014 at 11:30 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2013

    Posted by Joe For America on Apr 24, 2014

    Michelle Obama is rearranging plans for a speech before graduating high school seniors in Kansas in the face of protests that her appearance at a combined graduation ceremony for five schools would limit seating for families and friends.
    She had accepted the Topeka public school district’s invitation to speak May 17 at the combined ceremony to mark that day’s 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, outlawing school segregation. The case originated in Topeka.
    But a furor over what the district considered an honor erupted after plans for Mrs. Obama’s address were announced.
    Under a new plan worked out by the district, the first lady will speak on May 16 at a “senior recognition day” ceremony at the same 8,000-seat arena where the combined ceremony was to be held. The combined ceremony is being scrapped, and the five schools will hold separate graduation exercises instead.
    The compromise, announced while President Barack Obama was traveling in Asia, pleased Topeka students and parents who were concerned about being limited to six tickets for family members and the first lady’s remarks taking away from the occasion.
    “That’s awesome. I’m ecstatic,” said Tina Hernandez, mother of Topeka High senior Dauby Knight. “It works out for everybody. That makes me more excited for her to come.”
    The school district said each student will get one ticket and up to six for family members for the first lady’s speech, the same allotment originally planned for the combined graduation ceremony. And now that Mrs. Obama will no longer speak at a graduation, seating won’t need to be limited due to concerns over her security during graduation events.
    Continue reading…


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