Feathered Bastard

John Huppenthal Invokes Mein Kampf, Queen Boudica, and Hannibal, Rationalizing War on Ethnic Studies Students and Teachers

Hupp goes all Hannibal on the MAS crowd, 6:34 on

What I like about Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction John Huppenthal is his consistency. You know when he opens his mouth, he's bound to say something stupid. It's just a matter of how stupid.

His latest round of revelatory idiocies -- at least, the most recent captured on video -- occurred during a February 29 interview with reporter Brad Zinn of the conservative website Western Free Press, which has posted the confab on YouTube.

After regaling Zinn with the glories of "school choice" (read, "white flight from public schools" or "voluntary racial segregation," take your pick) and kvetching about needing funding for a new computer system, Hupp addresses the most contentious issue of his tenure at the state Department of Education: his quashing of the highly successful Mexican American Studies program at the Tucson Unified School District.

Perhaps knowing that his fellow right-wingers would like a bit of red meat, he tossed his pseudo-educator's cap, and donned his spiffy ideologue's helmet. 

Rather than doing what's right for TUSD's students, parents and teachers, Hupp framed the ethnic studies issue as one of war, wherein he preferred the methods of the great Carthaginian military commander Hannibal versus those of ancient Britain's Queen Boudica, both of whom battled the Roman army back in the day.

Hupp told Zinn that in this sort of situation, "You can very quickly, as a conservative, end up with a lot of forces against you, and be defeated in your mission."

Which is where the Boudica-Hannibal comparisons come into play, as Hupp explained his "strategy" in taking on the ethnic studies students and teachers, much in the same way that Elmer Fudd would explain his hunt for the ever-elusive "bunny wabbit."