Bett Norris



So, this high school senior named Emma Sullivan attended a speech by Governor Sam Brownback with her government class. She made some tweets to her friends about the governor using #heblowsalot as a hashtag.

So apparently there is someone on the governor’s staff whose job it is to monitor tweets from teenagers. The governor’s office contacted the school, the principal demanded Emma write a letter to the governor apologizing, and so far, she is refusing to do so.

Really? Seriously? First, monitoring tweets from teenagers. Second, contacting the school because an eighteen-year-old girl says the governor blows? Next, um, the first amendment. Next, Really? Seriously? I think the governor should apologize to Emma Sullivan. She is upset because he cut all funding for arts in the education budget. She wants to talk to him about that.


This is trending on twitter #heblowsalot. The governor’s twitter id is @govsambrownback. Have fun. I certainly did.

I’d rather vote for an eighteen-year-old who speaks her mind, crudely or not, than for someone who think his best use of time and labor is to track comments about himself on twitter and crush those who dare to speak his name in unflattering terms. Seriously.

Emma thinks that depending on private support for the arts programs in school may be wishful thinking. She thinks arts are part of a well-rounded education. Maybe she wonders why they don’t cut the budget for football and other sports and let them seek private funding.

She really, seriously thinks Sam Brownback blows a lot. Emma doesn’t agree with a lot of the things he has done as governor. My guess is when she votes for the very first time, it won’t be for him.

Speaking of free speech, when Emma was told to write a letter of apology, she was given talking points. Seriously. From the principal, who had heard from someone in the governor’s office. Really!

When Emma first tweeted those comments, she had 65 followers, all friends of hers. Now she has over 3000. Seriously.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Not only can they not make laws restricting freedom of speech, it is protected by case law and numerous Supreme Court decisions, such as the recent Citizens United case, which stated that corporations are people and therefore have a right to free speech, and that political donations in large sums are an exercise of free speech.

Maybe Emma would like to talk about that next. It really blows a lot too. Seriously.




One response to “Seriously?

  1. bettnorris November 28, 2011 at 11:44 am

    Update: Governor Sam Brownback has issued an apology. he says his staff over-reacted, and that he does believe in free speech. Good to know.


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