Opinion

LJCDS Head of School Gary Krahn Doubles Down on Decision to Shame Student for wearing MAGA Hat in New Video

Written by Michael Palomba

Despite the massive backlash that resulted from his actions, La Jolla Country Day School Head of School Gary Krahn is defending his decision of shaming a student for wearing a MAGA hat.

Krahn sent an email to staff saying he “talked with that student who now understands why that hat is offensive to our community,” and went on to say, “He will not wear it again. In addition his mom said that she is embarrassed by his actions. She will fulfill her role as a parent. We will continue to grow as a community that sees and values the dignity of all people.”

Naturally, anyone who values freedom of expression was appalled at both the decision to shame the student and the rhetoric used by Krahn to describe the situation.

This prompted Krahn to put out a video message titled “Message from Head of School Gary Krahn.”

Krahn begins by saying, “the first amendment is very important to me,” and discusses his time in the army. He goes on to say that it “was not a political decision to reach out to him and talk about that hat. It was a decision about dignity.

Krahn said he shared with the student “the impact it (the hat) has on our community. That hat has a symbol of racism and hatred.

He went on to say, “because we are a community of dignity, that all people have value, and that all people are vulnerable, I wanted the student to know that his decision was going to have an impact on people.”

This message from Krahn, in my opinion, only added fuel to the fire. The way he discusses the hat as “a symbol of racism and hatred” and a symbol contrary to “dignity” indicates how he views the 73,000,000 and counting individuals who voted for President Trump in the November election. It is almost certain he would not have reacted to a Joe Biden hat in the same way, despite the fact that Biden has used the N-word in congress, griped that he didn’t want his children growing up in a ‘racial jungle,’ said that African American’s who don’t vote for him “ain’t black,” and much more.

Gary Krahn needs to resign. It is undoubtable that La Jolla Country Day School is home to an abundance of political ideologies and viewpoints. A Head of School who is so blatantly biased and partisan is not a good image for the school or a comforting figure for students and faculty who may disagree with him. Those who play a role in educating our children have a responsibility to be fair and impartial. Mr. Krahn has proved he is neither of those.

Upon calling the school to get the administrators’ contact information, I was informed that “we don’t give emails out over the phone.” And upon clicking the faculty and staff directory on the school’s website, it no longer exists and redirects users to an error page. La Jolla Country Day School is clearly working to make it difficult to contact them in light of this situation.

The school’s main phone number is (858) 453-3440 and Head of School Gary Krahn’s email is gkrahn@ljcds.org.

The full video message can be viewed here.

Photo via “Message from Head of School Gary Krahn” on Vimeo