Date: Thu, 2 May 96 10:52:16 CDT
Subject: Re: LSD Tattoo -The Outcome
> On Wed, 17 Apr 1996, J----- wrote: > > I'm trying to get an appointment to see my daughter's principal. After > > leaving him two notes and an email, I finally got a response. He called > > my home number and left a message saying he'd be interested in talking > > to me (but) there's no retraction coming, and the material would continue > > to be distributed to my daughter's school and to all the schools in the > > district. > > I'm curious as to how things will go. The facts are incidental and often > antithetical to the drug war effort, so the response you are encountering > doesn't surprise me. The evidence is so overwhelming (and is backed-up > by authority-figures) in this case, though, that eventually it will come > down to a matter of pride on the part of the people who bought into the > con in the first place -- do they or don't they fess up. > > Let me know how things progress.
My daughter's principal left the message described above on Tuesday April 16. I called the school Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday trying to speak with the principal or to set up an appointment. I left messages with his secretary, the office staff, and on voice mail. No response.
A coworker suggested that I contact the police about the flyer, so Friday afternoon I went down to the local police station with the "Blue Star Acid" warning, several printouts downloaded from your FAQ, and a copy of Brunvand's "Curses, Broiled Again". The desk sargent hadn't seen the flyer before, and asked to make a copy. He referred me to the Narcotics group. I spoke with a sargent there, and she knew right away it was a fake. She referred me to another officer in the Youth Crimes division, who was the police dept's liasion to the schools. This officer had never seen the "Blue Star Acid" warning, but I gave him copies of all my evidence, and he later talked with about everyone in the police dept, and only one person said that they might have heard about LSD on tattoos (and this officer said it was with a carney (transient carnival worker) and not associated with children).
The Youth Crimes officer told me that he didn't have the authority to contact the schools and tell them not to distribute this information, but suggested that I could go to the school district's administrative offices. The officer said that's the official way to distribute information to schools, students, and parents.
Finishing up the story, I called the district offices, and faxed a letter describing what had happened, plus about a dozen pages of information on the "Blue Star Acid" warning. After a few phone calls, the information made it to the right person, and yesterday I got a phone call from the man who is over all the elementary schools in the district.
He said that he'd talked with his contacts at the police department, and that my information was right (DUH!). He'd set up a meeting with all the principals, a representative from the police, and some administration folks and told the principals: 1) not to distribute the Blue Star Acid warning, 2) not to distribute anything without going through the school district administration, and 3) to print a retraction in the next newsletter.
So now the local police department thinks I'm a great researcher, and thanked me for the sources and information I located. And I still haven't heard a thing from my daughter's principal.
My daughter will be in third grade next year, my son will be starting kindergarden. I hope I haven't made an enemy of the principal, and I hope my kids won't be targets for retaliation or retribution. Ah, well, no one said the fight for truth, justice, and the American Way would be easy.
Thanks for your help,
Date: Thu, 2 May 96 13:26:37 CDT
Subject: Re: LSD Tattoo -The Outcome
> > Thanks for keeping me up-to-date about your story. If you're not afraid > of retribution from the rubes-on-high, I'd love to include it in the > FAQ-page. The folks on alt.folklore.urban would probably also be > interested. I'm glad that after all of the work you put in that somebody > finally had the authority and good sense to be able to say "no more."
You can include it in the FAQ, but I request that you attribute it as you did the flyer I sent - as being from a mom somewhere in Texas, dealing with an elementary school principal in a school district somewhere in Texas. If anyone wants to dig deeper, you have my permission to give them my email address.
I have some fears of retribution. I don't think that the principal will target my children, but I'm sure I'm on his shit list. He brought this upon himself by refusing to talk with me, and only made it worse when I had to go over his head. Maybe he thought I'd go away if he ignored me.
Today is Thursday, when the children bring home their "Thursday envelope" with the newsletter and other notes and information for parents. It'll be interesting to see what kind of retraction he puts out about the Blue Star Acid warning. A coworker has bet it gets only one line at the bottom of the last page. Since the last day of school is only three weeks away, I wonder if I'll see a retraction at all.
And, amidst all this struggle, I keep forgetting to point out that there is an interesting variation to the warning that was distributed to my daughter. The flyer points out that the blue star resembles the star of the Dallas Cowboys. I haven't seen that on any other of the "Blue Star" warnings. Perhaps it is unique to this region? T----- is a suburb of Dallas. If the principal had spoken with me, I would have liked to have found out where he got the flyer from, to see if I could determine where the blue star/Dallas Cowboy connection was added. But after all this trouble, I doubt if the principal would care to sit down and discuss folklore and the spread of legends with me. Sigh.
I may post a synopsis of my story on alt.folklore.urban. It's one of my favorite newsgroups. I've lurked there for over a year, and have posted maybe 3 or 4 comments. After hearing a radio interview with Jan Brunvand years ago, I bought several of his books (all of which I either gave away or were borrowed and never returned). I have never, NEVER, had such a struggle convincing anyone that they had been taken in by an urban legend - and I never had such good documentation to support my point. I can't believe it's taken over a month to get this settled. So senseless.
And suddenly I can identify with the raving lunatics who appear at school board meetings, screaming about the crap schools are teaching the children ....
Date: Fri, 17 May 96 13:12:28 CDT
Subject: Re: LSD Tattoo -Update
[snip] > I hope there's a good payoff when the next parent newsletter comes out! > > -- Dave Gross
Three weeks have gone by since the call from the local school district saying I was right about the Blue Star Acid Warning being a fake, and letting me know that there would be a retraction. Three Thursdays, and there's been nothing in the school newsletter, and nothing sent home in the Thursday envelope. I've still heard nothing from the principal, and since next Thursday is the last day of school, I don't really expect to see anything then, either.
I sent a letter to the school district thanking them for the call and follow up. I also let them know there's been no retraction from the school, and no word from the principal. I let them know that although I was disappointed that the school had distributed false warning flyers to the students, I am even more disappointed that the principal responded to my inquiry by avoiding me. He ignored my evidence, and refused to reply to my calls seeking a meeting.
I told the people at the school district that I give up. I feel like I've done all a reasonable person could do. It's not worth it to keep this issue alive through the summer, and a retraction printed next school year (after the original warning was forgotten) would probably do more harm than good. I'm afraid that I've already made an enemy of the principal, and I don't want my children to suffer for that.
I am troubled about the principal, though. If his reaction to being caught making a mistake is to hide the mistake and avoid those who caught it, what else could be going on at that school?
You've done a good job with your website. I read my story there. I feel like a legend in my own time. Sorry the story has such an unsatisfying ending. Real life stories don't tie up neatly like fiction.