Professional Race Baiter Phil Kent Wants You To Fear Mexican Culture When Choosing School Super

I had a brief twitter exchange with Phil Kent a couple of weeks ago.  In it, he had tweeted about a “black Cobb County GA state house candidate” that had changed his name.  I tweeted back asking why it was important to label him as black, to which Mr. Kent responded that it was a “journalistic identification tool”.  OK, sure thing, right.  “Tool”.

Kent is now shilling for State School Superintendent candidate Sharyl Dawes, in the form of a robocall.  It’s not one that was stealthily done, as it’s prominently displayed on her website.  Kent begins by using a “journalistic identification tool”, introducing himself as a board member of the group “Pro English”.  I’m glad such groups exist, for without them, the anti-English lobby would probably have us all speaking German by now, and there’s nothing pretty about that language.  But I digress.

Kent continues in the call:

“Today is a Mexican holiday called ‘Cinco de Mayo’ and I bring that to your attention to highlight a troubling cultural issue in Georgia. All too many children in our public schools cannot speak the English language. Sharyl Dawes is the only candidate for State School Superintendent who has a plan to ensure that all classroom instruction is conducted in English only.  Please remember to vote for Sharyl Dawes to improve education, protect our children, and preserve our culture. That’s Sharyl Dawes. Thank You.”

This week, another friend of mine who is a candidate sent me a questionnaire with some answers he’s responding to for local media.  Their first question is “What should the GOP be doing to attract and maintain more younger voters?”  My answer:  Avoid the politics of Phil Kent.

Phil has long made a career off of reinforcing fear of older white Republicans.  “They” are trying to take away “our” culture.  You know, those people that aren’t like “us”.

Phil knows this, and he knows that the people he’s targeting know this.  People willing to shill this way all know this.  Unfortunately, the calculus is that they also know that more times than not, it’s effective.  At least for now.  

If you think the problem with education is that people who aren’t like “us” are in our schools, I guess you should vote for Sharyl Dawes.  If you want the students who are in our schools to actually be educated so as to one day become productive members of our society and contribute and pay taxes regardless where they or their parents came from or regardless the color of their skin, then please vote for anyone else.


  1. John Konop says:

    ……….“journalistic identification tool”. OK, sure thing, right. ”Tool”…….

    LOL almost feel out of my chair…..

    This is one of your best post ever…..Makes a great point and is very funny……

  2. ricstewart says:

    This is the reason I will vote for anyone but Sharyl Dawes. Shame on her for pandering to the lowest common denominator of politics and aligning herself with Phil Kent and his ilk.

  3. ricstewart says:

    Pro English is part of the John Tanton network of faux-grassroots anti-immigrant organizations. Research the Tanton network: Pro English and its sister organizations have done a great job of ingratiating themselves to conservatives, but they are anything but conservative. It’s rooted in extreme left-wing ideology. But it makes for great red meat to GOP primary voters.

    • xdog says:

      “extreme left-wing ideology”

      Come again? Offhand, I associate English-only movements with the nativist right. But I’m always willing to learn so I took your advice and did a little research.

      Wikipedia said that in addition to his ProEnglish work and efforts to reduce immigration, he’d previously held leadership positions in the Sierra Club, Zero Population Growth, the Audubon Society, and Planned Parenthood.

      The Southern Poverty Law Center calls Tanton “the racist architect of the modern anti-immigrant movement” and condemns him for associating with Holocaust deniers, white nationalists, and Klan lawyers.

      Mother Jones reported in 2012 he has received millions from Scaife foundations and has been involved with Tom Tancredo, Kris Kobach, and Joe Arpaio.

      I got tired about then but unless you believe that membership in PP and ZP and holding an interest in conservation issues is ‘extreme left-wing’, it’s hard to see the basis for your claim.

  4. FriendshipDitch says:

    It starts with cinco de mayo, then pretty soon it’s diez de mayo, and then veinte de mayo and then you’ve pretty much got a whole month of mexicans. I support this Dawes lady because she’s for drawing the line at 5.

    As for English only in this classroom, I totally agree. Whenever you watch a movie, you’ll notice that the classiest people have the English accents. Every child in georgia should have an accent like that, so I’m for this proposal. More Downton Abbey, less DC Cab(bie).

    • The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

      You mean the state’s immigration non-review board that supposedly helps oversee the state’s almost completely-unenforced and totally-unfunded “get-tough” illegal immigration law from a few years back?

      There hasn’t been much (if any) mention of the immigration review board since the law was passed 3 years ago.

      When was the last time the immigration review board actually reviewed any state illegal immigration law violations?

      Has the immigration review board ever actually reviewed any violations of the illegal immigration law that everyone curiously seems to have largely forgotten about?

  5. Mensa Dropout says:

    A few things here:
    1. All public education is done in English. Translations are for the parents.
    2. All standardized tests are in English. Students are afforded a word to word dictionary if they are ESOL. I know. I proctor tests for our ESOL students every year.
    3. This woman might just be brilliant in her platform, as what she wants is…wait for it…ALREADY HAPPENING IN SCHOOL!
    4. Shame on her and him.

    • Harry says:

      In Europe, immigrant children without local language skills are placed into remedial classes until they meet minimum standards to be placed in the general student population. I believe the school may, but is not required, to provide translation assistance. How does that compare with what we do here?

      • Mensa Dropout says:

        Here in Georgia, they are called Sheltered Classes. Students are placed in ESOL classes in English, and they are small (5-12 students) and based on language aquisition. You have students whose home languages vary (It may come as a shock to Mr. Kent, but we have students from all over the world who speak languages other than Spanish), which is why they are taught in English. It is an immersion English class. Students are tested every year as to where they stand on their English Language aquisition, and some move out very quickly. Some stay for a while and eventually test out.
        Remember though, that numbers are universal. Science is science. The students are in smaller classes for Social Studies and English.
        For testing, which, again, is in ENGLISH, the students are allowed a word to word dictionary.

  6. Flowers says:

    Do you want my opinion on English-only, Phil Kent or other? As the mother of children who speak many languages and are successful in business (read: they didn’t need to move home after college), I’m in the camp that more is better. Our world has changed and with it we must. Communication is the key to success. We must find the form and evolve with it. Good job, Charlie.

  7. Jackster says:

    As Felipe Kent explained to me in on Facebook a while ago, the need for English only everything is a “public safety issue”. However, any attempts to sway and explain to his FB followers of how complex the problem actually is using English was lost on them.

    Perhaps we can identify another language to which to communicate with this type of scared of what you don’t understand crowd, I’m all about it. Thus far, I’ve only come up with Old Man Fists, having Edward James Olmos stand in for one of the non white georgia gang, or somehow get Felipe Kent to haggle with a mexican family on tape at a yard sale.

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