West Side Story: Public school puts on holiday show with vaxxed kids promising not to be friends with unvaxxed kids

West Side Story play (1957)

As many on this blog know, I have long been an advocate for public schools, which I believe serve a critical function in shaping future citizens. However, teachers and administrators seem intent on fueling calls for even greater private school voucher programs and other alternatives to the public schools. Some schools seem more focused on indoctrination than education. That is the concern with a video recently shared by a mother in New York.  In the video, students at the Upper West Side’s M.S. 243 Center School where students held up signs for Pfizer and Moderna and sang “It’s safe to vax and if your friends don’t vax then they ain’t no friends of mine.” Students are not required to be vaccinated in New York and the song appeared to be an effort to stigmatize and isolate those who have declined vaccination.  The New York school system is investigating the matter.

A mother, Antigone Michaelides, shared recordings with Just the News and said that participation of students was mandatory. The kids sang a parody of the Men Without Hats song, “Safety Dance,” which includes the line “Your friends don’t dance, and if they don’t dance, well they’re no friends of mine.”

Michaelides tweeted an image of skit:

There were also signs reading “I FEAR GOD NOT COVID” and “I AM NOT A SCIENCE EXPERIMENT.” Rather than offer a counterpoint, critics say that those holding the signs were portrayed as crazy or unstable.

Regardless of how these signs were presented, the controversy highlights the unnecessary politicalization of our public schools. This is just a little play and a small school. However, it is indicative of a rising concern over teachers using schools — and our kids — for political agendas.

This week, San Francisco voters overwhelmingly recalled three school board members. We previously discussed their controversial agenda, including renaming schools and opposition to gifted programs as inequitable. Other officials in San Francisco have denounced meritocracy itself as racist.

Some in the media have responded to the recall with outrage like CNN’s column “San Francisco school board recall sends a dangerous message” explaining that “the rhetoric of ‘parents’ rights'” is merely a substitute for “right-wing school politics.” This view was echoed by ousted San Francisco school board president Gabriela López who tweeted Thursday that these voters were “aligned” with white supremacists. That’s right. With more than 70 percent removing the three Democrats, we have learned that San Francisco is a hotbed of white supremacy and far-right politics.

Others have warned that the use of schools to advance controversial political and social justice agendas is backfiring on Democratic figures. As shown in Virginia, it could well backfire at the polls.

However, my concern remains the impact on public schools, which are now viewed as largely hostile to conservatives or libertarians.  Others feel that teachers and administrators have increasingly put education as a secondary priority despite continuing low performance rates in many of our public school districts. The result can be a further exodus from our schools and even greater pressure for vouchers to allow parents to go to private schools.  Again, this is just one school and one little skit. However, it reflects the poor choices fueling the shift away from public schools.

110 thoughts on “West Side Story: Public school puts on holiday show with vaxxed kids promising not to be friends with unvaxxed kids”

  1. The writer of this play missed his opportunity. It would have been much more effective to have students wearing signs and calling out that they are unclean.

  2. These youngsters did not develop this hateful idea on their own! Look to the intolerant “teachers” (a/k/a indoctrinators) and administrators. I wonder which parents had no idea what their children were rehearsing and planning – and which knew, but blessed this awful spectacle.

  3. The principal feature of American liberalism is sanctimoniousness. By loudly denouncing all bad things — war and hunger and date rape — liberals testify to their own terrific goodness. More important, they promote themselves to membership in a self-selecting elite of those who care deeply about such things…. It’s a kind of natural aristocracy, and the wonderful thing about this aristocracy is that you don’t have to be brave, smart, strong or even lucky to join it, you just have to be liberal.

    ― P.J. O’Rourke (RIP)

    Give War a Chance: Eyewitness Accounts of Mankind’s Struggle Against Tyranny, Injustice, and Alcohol-Free Beer

    1. “The principal feature of American liberalism is sanctimoniousness.”

      Yep, we don’t find at least as much sanctimoniousness in American conservatism. The right definitely doesn’t loudly proclaim that it’s working on God’s behalf and then fail to follow its Bible’s teachings, like Thou shalt not lie and Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

      1. You are a good example of the sanctimoniousness seen on the left. You even lie like a leftist, though perhaps a bit more because you lack knowledge.

  4. That area of the school has a lot of young married people with young children. That is also approximately where hotels were filled with the homeless and drug addicts. When mom is walking her kids, they can watch all sorts of things going on in the street, and now they have to put up with a play that is politically indoctrinating children with attitudes that lead to hate and violence.

    The left is destroying societal norms and a stable society. That is what Stalin did. I think the teacher(s) who did this should be personally sued. Because of sovereign immunity, it may not be possible, but perhaps one or more teachers went over the line enough where a suit would create a chilling effect.

    1. S. Meyer: Teachers have sovereign immunity…but ironically, many police got this taken away from them. Typical move by the liberals to continue their march of indoctrinating our kids in their own image. And, to destroy our safety and wellbeing at the same time.

      1. I think there is an element of sovereign immunity for the public schools through government and therefore a degree of immunity for teachers. How much might depend on the state. I think whatever vulnerability teachers have should be used to make then retrain their actions.

  5. Not being vaccinated (except rare circumstances) is not just a choice like having tea or coffee. It is statement that one does not care at all about the health of anyone, including themselves. They are saying that they do not have the capability for rational thought and are willing to die just to show their political alliance to a Death Cult. To not vaccinate their children just make this worse. Of course sane parents would want to keep their kids away from these nuts.

    1. “It is statement that one does not care at all about the health of anyone, including themselves.”

      How? I think it is a statement of people who care about ‘the science’ and the right for every individual to think for themselves. We have been fed a lot of BS. That is what you regurgitate. One can’t even criticize Fauci or discuss his compensation paid for by the American taxpayer. (See below).

      1. This is part of an open letter to all from Adam Andrzejewski:

        In case you missed it – earlier this week I broke the news on Tucker Carlson Tonight that my Forbes column was terminated after the National Institutes of Health pressured the Forbes c-suite because of my oversight pieces on Fauci’s finances.

        Dr. Anthony Fauci is the most highly paid federal employee and the most visible. Therefore, we have an obligation to give him oversight.

        And Forbes canceled my column.

        Forbes was a key platform for nearly eight years. I published 206 oversight pieces and a quarter million words of investigation.

          1. In addition to the money paid by those the CDC is supposed to oversee, how much money is Fauci (and others) earning from this false story that has been created for the American public. Sammy is a lemming.

          2. Alan/ Meyer

            Here’s a list of top salaries in the field of medicine:

            Below are the five top-earning specialties, according to the report.

            Plastic surgery: $526,000.

            Orthopedics and orthopedic surgery: $511,000.

            Cardiology: $459,000.

            Urology: $427,000.

            Otolaryngology: $417,000.

            Dec 6, 2021
            Fauc’s salary comes in at the lower range of these levels. So I’m not sure what the ‘scandal’ is. It sounds like another one those Turley posts where we’re supposed to hate someone. And those posts are all too common here.

            Do we want the nation’s Infecteous Disease Expert to be just an ‘average doctor’ on an ‘average salary’?

            1. Unfortunately for you, you seem unable to understand the topic of the discussion. Read again. This is quite typical for your type.

              You missed the boat completely. Salary wasn’t the issue.

      2. Actors are paid millions, sports stars are paid millions. Tucker Carlson and other TV pundits make millions. All of them could vanish and it would not matter a lick. So ya, I have no problem with one of the top infectious disease doctors in the world making $450k.

        1. How similar Sammy is to the Anonymous I just responded to. ATS likes to double or triple up on his opinions so others can view all these posts with their own perspective and conclude what they wish about Sammy, Anonymous the Stupid and Anonymous.

          Why should the columnist lose his job because he delved into the compensation of Anthony Fauci and his wife? That is what he does about everyone in government.

            1. I think Anonymous the Stupid is looking into a mirror.

              I have nothing to worry about if people wish to judge me. You have a lot to worry about and that is proven by your needing multiple identities.

    2. “It is statement that one does not care at all about the health of anyone, including themselves.” HAHAHAHAHAHA. Vaccinated people can still contract the disease and still transmit it. Plus it exposes the vaccinated to a growing number of side effects.

    3. FAUCI-ism rules! Lefties progressives and WOKEys unite because you know everything – especially how to hate and denigrate anyone who disagrees with them.

    4. Not being vaccinated (except rare circumstances) is not just a choice like having tea or coffee. It is statement that one does not care at all about the health of anyone, including themselves.

      All of that is equivalent to drunk mumbling

      That ignores the fact, that early on we knew the mRNA dose was not a vaccine. Does not prevent contracting nor passing on the virus.
      We do not have anti vaxers. We have informed persons making informed decisions.

    5. Sammy, your opinion is laden with lack of knowledge and a downright inability to incorporate facts.

  6. It’s stupid to keep exposing human stupidity if doing so does nothing to make them non-stupid.

  7. It’s official: thanks to Mespo’s influential post, black history month will no longer be celebrated.

  8. What do you mean by “despite”? The whole point is to turn out poorly educated people who are used to being indoctrinated and lack the interest or ability to question what they are told.

  9. “Other officials in San Francisco have denounced meritocracy itself as racist.”
    Unpack that position for a moment and consider the backthought which is that Blacks can’t succeed in merit based systems and then ask yourself: who is the real racist?

    1. Blacks can’t succeed in merit based systems and then ask yourself: who is the real racist?

      That complacency is also still alive and well in what President George W. Bush called “the soft bigotry of low expectations.”

    2. …a situation that would be embarrassing for most people.

      Dependence is typically a pejorative.

  10. If “our bodies, our selves” applies to abortion, should it also apply to vaccines? If not, then why not?

    1. “If “our bodies, our selves” applies to abortion, should it also apply to vaccines? If not, then why not?”
      It should, of course. But I never understood that in the context of abortion. With abortion, the line should be “my body, myself – passengers in my body are just along for the ride.”

  11. These are not the public schools that many of us attended. Public schools produce graduates that are just competent enough to obey “authority.”

    Public schools don’t teach about the Constitution and civics? Why? The “man” does not want anyone to know their rights, because they want the next generations to obey authority.

    Some systems have gone so far as to embrace the theory that math is racist and showing how a student arrived at an answer is unjust.

    In several systems students are being “taught” that the country is evil. Further, they are told that Socialism are preferable to Capitalism.

    In many systems school is not a a safe haven. There is an increasing amount of student on student, student on teacher violence.

    Teachers do not want to be in the classroom, rather they want to work from home while eating bon bons in their fuzzy pink slippers. They don’t assign homework or test on summer reading. In short, many teachers and administrators have little interests in the students.

    Where once the purpose of school was academics, they have become centers of indoctrination on “progressive” doctrine.

    Where once parent involvement was encouraged, parent attention is not encouraged. Parents who demand transparency and accountability from school boards, administrators, and faculty have been removed from school board meetings or not even allowed to speak.

    In some systems parents are seen as domestic terrorists. The public school industry does not recognize parental rights.

    Is it any wonder why parents are unenrolling students from public schools?

      1. Mespo, that is false news and never occurred. At least that is what our friends on this blog keep saying about everything critical of their ideology of hate and fear.

        Thank you for the video. This could have just as easily been about CRT or something else that the left will deny despite physical evidence.

  12. When do we go back to just teaching reading, writing and rithmatic. Let everything else happen outside a public school classroom. Any indoctrination should be done off school property.

  13. The wants and desires of a single man should not be allowed to cause this much disruption to human civilization. The United Nations was supposed to have been established to prevent a situation like that in Ukraine now. Letting Russia be in the United Nations is like letting Nazi Germany in the League of Nations. But, alas, I keep screaming into the wilderness, all to no avail.

    1. “The wants and desires of a single man should not be allowed to cause this much disruption to human civilization.”

      I agree. Fauci should have been fired long ago.

  14. Much as I regret the divisiveness that is plaguing the country, I am happy that the fanatics are being outed.

    Let America see how some teachers are trying to create more barriers between kids.

    Then let the debates begin and have those teachers defend tormenting unvaxxed kids.

    Ugly people should be exposed so that parents can decide.

    1. Monument says:

      “Ugly people should be exposed so that parents can decide.”

      I’d be willing to bet folding money that you are so *physically* ugly that when your dog humps your leg, he actually closes his eyes.

  15. A good history lesson for your readers would be to talk about the Scopes monkey trial, when conservative parents opposed the teaching of evolution because it was not what god taught. The state legislature passed a law against teaching so Mr Scopes was put on trial for teaching the science. When I was looking at private school options for my kids a few years ago, some said they do not teach evolution. The “too controversial” is often just parents wanting their kids not to learn about science at school because it might contradict what anti-science their parents were teaching them at home.

    Nowadays we have conservatives like Ben Shapiro opposing public school teachers who are gay introducing their spouse to their school kids because they don’t want them to learn that gays exist and are a normal part of society.

    An uneducated, anti-science populace is the electorate the conservative parents are looking for.

    1. Evolution – Controversial?: So, you would have schools teaching false history, irrelevant “ethnic” math, and non-grammatical English? How “scientific” is the woke curriculum? Your analogy falls flat.

    2. Why should my kids be “introduced” to the spouse of their teacher? Did I send them to the teacher’s house? If so, why not invite the parents in to have a look around? It’s really not so hard to understand: teachers should maintain a professional relationship with their students and confine themselves to academics. Leave the parenting to the parents!

    3. I think you miss the entire point of the professor’s column. I have now been vaccinated 4 times due to having a transplant, and I am also a physician. I am pro vaccine all the way. But you have to remember that not everyone thinks the same and all physicians have learned that the art of the practice often encompasses treating or trying to treat people who may not believe in your treatment. You also learn that this spans both right wing, left wing, some physicians are pro and some are not. I can guarantee you that I have never changed a single mind by berating people, or embarrassing them in public, or a myriad of other things the vax police wish to do. You keep the resistant patient and you develop rapport and constant education on why we are advocating the treatment and slowly you change minds, but not always. But the main thing is that communication remains open both ways.You berate and scream and people just dig in their heels more. Lastly the messaging by both administrations has been abysmal, chaotic at times, and carried off with a snobbery and condescending attitude that turns off a large group of people with the first words spoken. You treat a patient like a fool, or idiot and you will never see or be trusted by that patient again. Multiply that by millions.

      1. GEB: Thanks! You hit on a very critical element that was completely missing in this entire pandemic mess: education. This could have been an opportunity for a massive educational push, through cable, social media and other channels. Instead, the government took a “trust us and don’t ask questions” approach, even after it became clear that no one in either administration could be trusted. The American public may not all be rocket scientists, but they aren’t complete idiots either, and both the media and politicians failed to reach out to the public with a coordinated, educational message. We know they’re capable of that — look at how they handle the war drums when they want to! But in this case, politics got in the way of science and the public lost.

      2. GEB, you make a lot of sense. I am triple vaccinated, but I don’t know if we should vaccinate infants and young children. I am curious how you weigh the unknowns of vaccination against the fact that children were mostly spared from the disease and might develop a stronger immunity against Covid for future iterations of the disease without running any long-term risk.

        1. They are pushing to get these covid vaccines on the childhood vaccination schedule because once on there, the pharma companies will have liability protection. If it is not on the childhood schedule, and the vaccines are fully approved and licensed, the pharma companies no longer have the liability shield currently in place, and lawyers like RFK Jr. will sue them out of existence overnight. That’s “the science” behind the push to vaccinate babies! There is none!

          1. Anonymous, that possibility was one of my concerns as well, and why I was looking into the FDA statements regarding the differences between Comirnaty and BioNTech. I think, however, there is more than just liability concerns that we are dealing with.

    4. Why would any teacher introduce their spouse to their students? From elementary school all the way through university, not one teacher/professor introduced his/her spouse in class or after class. It raises the question of motive.

    5. An uneducated, anti-science populace is the electorate the conservative parents are looking for.

      Except for the fact that religous high schools turn out the highest percentage of the most knowledgeable graduates. The most educated have the ability to see God in all science.

  16. There are a lot of vaccines required to go to public schools. There have been for many many years. I had to get vaccinated for all kinds of things and my kids did too.

    Suddenly, a vaccine which has been proven safe and effective is a controversial political and social issue but that is just because a bunch of right wing parents made it so.

    1. Don’t Look Up: There may well be a lot of vaccines for school kids, but, at least here in MN, there are also “exceptions,” and parents can opt out. There are no such opt outs for the coronavirus mandates. That’s the difference.

    2. “Suddenly, a vaccine which has been proven safe and effective…”

      It has not been.

    3. Don’t Look Up’

      You have erected a straw man.

      This debate is not about vaccines, it is about the Government hiding facts. Facts that are needed to make INFORMED decisions.

    4. “Proven”? When the manufacturers are refusing to produce the data used in their testing for independent review, when numerous reports of complications are surfacing, when even some foreign governments are beginning to pull back on vaccinations for young people? When the developers have absolutely NO liability, and knew that when developing the ‘vaccines’, which don’t actually vaccinate anyone?


      You may let the MSM and Fed’s put whatever then want into your mouth, but you don’t actually have to swallow….

    5. If Fauci can cause Forbes to silence a columnist of many years to keep his compensation from the federal government secret, why should we trust his voice backed up with guns?

    6. Don’t Look Up because you might see the sky is not falling. Then you would have to reevaluate everything you thought you knew.

    7. The vaccine has not proven to be safe and effective. There are short term side effects and the long-term side effects are still unknown, although there is some research now suggesting damage to your immune system. Effectiveness is limited as the vaccine wanes off after 7 months and does not prevent contraction and transmission.

    8. “There are a lot of vaccines required to go to public schools.”

      That is begging the question.

      Government has no right to force an individual to be vaccinated. And the same principle applies to the government compelling a parent to force a child to be vaccinated. Further, if your child is vaccinated, then what are you worried about?

      1. Worried about? Dunno, maybe heart inflammation, heart attacks, strokes, blood clots, seizure, paralysis, and even death. Step right up and do your civic duty!

        1. “Worried about?”

          You missed the reference of my “worried about” — which is bizarre, given the context of my comment.

  17. Say what you want about public schools, but many private schools have been expelling kids who are unvaxxed.

    Because that is what a lot of parents want.

    1. “Say what you want about public schools, but many private schools have been expelling kids who are unvaxxed.”

      You’re equivocating between public (government) action and private action. And if your child is vaccinated, then what are you worried about?

  18. CRT and teaching of black history is being banned by state legislators in red states. That is censorship by the government.

    But sure, let’s worry about what some random school kids said about unvaxxed – a self-selected group making things more dangerous for the rest of us.

    1. George, schools also banned prayer, the Bible’s theory on evolution and many other outdated and “crazy” indoctrinations. Did you support that? Would you be so sanguine if a school in MS was teaching that blacks are the problem in society as leftists and CRT teach that whites are the problem? No, didn’t think so.

      George, a liar, says that schools are banning black history being taught and of course this is a lie. Parents don’t want 8 year old kids being told that they are oppressors or that they are oppressed, they don’t want white or black only groups being pushed by segregationist policies. People are tired of white and black graduations at Harvard, two “National” Anthems, white and black dorms and especially segregation of little kids in school.

      But please keep talking George, you will do fine in November. We thank you very much for your far left, lunatic fringe policies.

    2. George: As usual, false statements by the liberal choir. Black history isn’t being banned anywhere. As for CRT, what the “bans” are trying to stop is telling kids that they are oppressors or victims according to their skin color. This is a form of bullying, because teachers do not allow discussion or dissent in these classrooms, and the few kids who have tried have been shamed. Now, if you’re OK with allowing teachers to do the bullying, then you have a serious problem. There are many ways to teach about America’s racist history without bullying kids. That’s what these anti-CRT laws are about — finding actual teahing strategies other than bullying and lies. I’d wager that most over-50 readers of this blog were taught about racism in America long before CRT came along. I know I was. CRT isn’t about “teaching Black history” — it’s a dangerous racist ideology that has no place in K-12 schools.

    3. Black history is a misnomer; it’s American history. If not, where’s White History or Yellow History or Brown History. Colors don’t have hiistory.

      1. “Black history is a misnomer . . .”

        Spot on!

        There is no such thing a “black history” or “women’s history” — or any other “history” through the propaganda lens of gender and ethnicity.

        There is only the history of what individuals did and why they did it.

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