In the Dec. 9, 2017, issue of the Laurel-Leader Call, a “Letter to the Editor” submission inaccurately identified Heidelberg High School Band as one that provided a “display of vulgarity, obscenity, and disgusting so-called dancing” during the December 2 Laurel Sertoma Christmas Parade. I beg to differ.
First, the Heidelberg High School Marching Band performed with the same level of musical aestheticism and character as any of the other high school bands — a performance that did not include “vulgar, obscene, disgusting” dancing. Secondly, the HHS Band has participated in this annual Christmas parade for several years and is/has been frequently lauded for its highly charged performances. In December of 2016, the band was even awarded the First Place trophy at the conclusion of the parade. Thirdly, what is the most concerning is not that the HHS Band was unjustly berated but rather that an adult would utilize the local newspaper as a vehicle for lambasting and disparaging children. Then, to further complicate the issue, the writer invoked Christianity and overtly implied how these children (I repeat) violated its tenets and offended the parade onlookers’ sensibilities.
Lastly, while I do understand that the sentiments expressed in this article were the submitter’s personal opinion, in the future would it be too much to ask that one’s opinions be thoroughly verified for veracity — particularly if such views are going to be voiced through a medium that represents so many diverse communities and educational institutions and helps shape public opinion? Regardless of whether or not we agree with others’ actions, the least successful way of addressing our concerns is by denigrating those individuals and placing the blame for all of society’s ills at their personal doorsteps. No one group or person deserves such a heavy burden.