Maybe It Is Best Not To Confess To A Crime On Social Media
The LAUSD issues a statement about the fake Twitter account impersonating Superintendent Beutner. The perpetrator is unapologetic.
On Friday, the Los Angeles Unified School District issued a News Statement acknowledging “that a fake Twitter account has been posted impersonating Superintendent Austin Beutner.” The release confirmed that the statements made in the Tweets “were not made by the Superintendent” and that the district has taken the necessary steps “to uncover the true identity of this impersonator.”
If the district is serious about hunting down the perpetrator, they need to look no further than Kim Silverstein’s Twitter account. As reported previously, this Parent Leader from Nick Melvoin’s Speak UP organization is the one who registered her account in the name of the Superintendent. Sometime after the election, she added her own name, although Beutner’s name was still referenced.
On Friday, Silverstein Tweeted about what the district has described as an illegal action. She claims that she “temporarily change[d] my name and profile pic” on the day after the election so that the “Superintendent” could wish a friend a happy birthday. A Tweet expressing birthday wishes on the day in question cannot currently be found on the timeline.
Missing from Silverstein’s Trump-worthy Twitter tirade was any apology to Beutner, the LAUSD, the candidates, or the voters in Board Districts 3 and 7. Instead, she congratulates herself on “a creative and low-cost gift idea”. She also states that she was “flattered by all this trolling attention”.
If the name on the Twitter account was in fact changed the day after the election, then Silverstein only has to answer for having bad judgment. However, with the absence of the birthday Tweet that is supposed to explain away the story, the possibility still exists that Silverstein was Tweeting under Beutner’s name at the time people were voting. This would make the situation far more serious.
To this point, neither Nick Melvoin nor Speak UP have commented on the actions of their Parent Leader. This is highly hypocritical of them given the fact that this group expressed outrage directly at Board Member Scott Schmerelson because a volunteer from his campaign (who they falsely identified as a “campaign representative”) had called his opponent a “dumb blond” on Facebook. When will they “speak up” about the actions of Silverstein, who is a leader in their organization?
Carl Petersen is a parent, an advocate for students with special education needs, an elected member of the Northridge East Neighborhood Council, a member of the LAUSD’s CAC, and was a Green Party candidate in LAUSD’s District 2 School Board race. During the campaign, the Network for Public Education (NPE) Action endorsed him, and Dr. Diane Ravitch called him a “strong supporter of public schools.” For links to his blogs, please visit www.ChangeTheLAUSD.com. Opinions are his own.