Rodney Robinson is a social studies teacher in Richmond, Virginia.
Robinson was even named the national “Teacher of the Year” in 2019, after over a decade of teaching.
So he’s obviously spent a lot of time influencing young minds.
Based on his tweet about Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), that sounds like something that should concern people.
He’s now deleted the tweet. pic.twitter.com/kDg2JNUZMR
— Kyle Kashuv (@KyleKashuv) December 31, 2020
“Who are Mitch McConnell’s neighbors?” he wrote. “I’m just saying Rand Paul’s neighbor did what a true Kentucky hero should do. It’s your turn to step up.”
Here’s the archive of the tweet and the responses.
The tweet is encouraging McConnell’s neighbors to attack him as the neighbor of Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) attacked him. That attack severely injured Paul, breaking six of his ribs and damaging his lung, part of which later had to be removed.
It’s a common leftist thing to laud Paul’s neighbor as though that vicious attack was a good thing. It says a lot about anyone who would think that’s a good thing.
But it’s more than troubling when it’s a teacher who has charge over children.
Kelly Paul, Rand Paul’s wife, was outraged at Robinson’s tweet.
I am so disgusted by this I have no words. The 2019 “National Teacher Of The Year” is celebrating the violent assault on my husband that resulted in 6 broken ribs and part of his lung being removed. This hateful thug is calling for more violence on Sen McConnell. @jack https://t.co/JLraxwLaZD
— Kelley Paul (@KelleyAshbyPaul) December 31, 2020
Robinson deleted the tweet but then tried to justify himself and play the victim. “I made a Mitch McConnell joke today and the conservative bots are real angry. It’s funny because the joke was made early today and no one said a thing until I promoted black medical awareness.”
So he’s claiming that people are just upset because he “promoted black medical awareness.” That really takes the cake for a spin. Notice he still doesn’t have an apology in there, because it’s just a “joke.” Even after getting backlash, he still doesn’t get that’s not a joke, that’s the problem.
Maybe the worst thing about his comments is what kind of student Robinson teaches, kids who really need help and not someone who would encourage violence against a public official in a tweet.
“Robinson teaches social studies and history at Virgie Binford Education Center, a school inside the Richmond Juvenile Detention Center. His lessons focus on helping his students become socially conscious citizens who make the most out of their second chance.” CBS News reported in April 2019.
In honoring him in 2019, the Council of Chief State School Officers explained about Robinson in a statement that “He creates a positive school culture by empowering his students – many of whom have experienced trauma – to become civically minded social advocates who use their skills and voices to affect physical and policy changes at their school and in their communities,” CNN reported.
I don’t know about you but that reads like an award for teaching kids to be social justice warriors to me.
Gotta wonder what parents in the Richmond VA school district think of a teacher wishing physical harm on an elected official.
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) December 30, 2020
It must not have gone over well because today, Robinson is apologizing. But even now, his apology is lacking, saying he was not aware of how serious Paul’s injuries had been.
“I apologize for making light of his injuries. I do not advocate for violence against Mitch McConnell,” Robinson said, according to ABC 8 News.
The Richmond Public School system announced that they’d hired him to “develop an initiative for male teachers of color.” In response to this, their superintendent declared that they didn’t “condone any violence of any kind.” But it’s clear from his remark that they’re not cutting him lose because of this.
RPS doesn’t condone violence of any kind. Period. Thank you to @RodRobinsonRVA for this heartfelt apology. Words matter – across the political spectrum. https://t.co/aguc2X8hNK
— Jason Kamras (@JasonKamras) December 31, 2020
If he’d been on the right, he would, of course, be gone in a red hot minute.