Matthew Lickona 2:43 p.m., June 19
Local kids grill mayoral candidates on bullies and booze
With just one day to go before America's Finest City selects its new mayor, local youth groups submitted questionnaires to both candidates, asking them for their views on issues that face kids today. "We know we can't vote, and that our voice is therefore completely irrelevant," said Will Peeple, the 17-year-old High Tech High Senior who heads up Meaningless Yelling from Today's Obnoxious Youth (MYTOY). "But why should old people get all the attention? I believe the children are the future."
The questions covered a broad range of topics, from making college more affordable to reducing in-school restrictions on Facebook updates. Below are some of the candidates' more interesting responses.
DeMaio on bullying: "Bullying is the a huge problem in our city's schools, and it must be dealt with. All bullies should be ostracized from the general student body, and made to feel deeply ashamed of their antisocial behavior. If they don't learn to hate what sets them apart from decent people, how will they ever change?" DeMaio did allow for possible exceptions for bullies who also identify as LGBTQ. "Such students represent a minority that has, historically, been a common target for bullies. Some measure of redress is only appropriate."
Filner on preventing alcohol abuse among minors: "I am a firm believer that the real solution here lies in cutting down on demand, not supply. I am also a firm believer in the notion that parents are the best teachers our children can have. I think if parents would just sit down and get smashed with their children - I mean, really blotto, like on a three-day holiday weekend bender, that sort of thing - the experience would prove traumatic enough that the kids would think twice about underage drinking in the future. Just as it is difficult for children to imagine their parents engaged in sexual congress, the experience of having to hold your mother's hair back while she hugs the toilet should do wonders to remove the glamor and allure of alcohol."