Unlike way too many people anymore, I am not in the business of telling anyone what they are never allowed to joke about. In the right context, almost anything can be funny to someone. But that’s the thing. Context. Like let’s just say you’ve got a killer line about not negotiating with terrorists. Maybe save that one for when you’re shutting down a heckler on stage at the Ha Ha Hut rather than using it when a Muslim kid asks you a question while you’re teaching a high school math class.
Mohammed Zubi, a senior at Ridgefield Memorial High School, said the class was working on a project last Wednesday and he raised his hand to ask if students could have more time to finish the assignment when the assistant teacher allegedly responded saying, “We don’t negotiate with terrorists.”
“I’m looking around, at a loss for words, completely shocked,” Zubi told CNN. He said the entire class heard the exchange and he asked the girl behind him to make sure that’s what the assistant teacher had said, and she confirmed she heard the same thing.
Zubi, 17, said the assistant teacher came up to him a few minutes later, patted him on the back, and said he didn’t mean it like that. “In my head I’m just like, what other way could he have meant that?” Zubi said.
The Ridgefield School District released a statement Sunday saying that the district “has absolutely no tolerance for any sort of discrimination against any student or staff member.”
In the statement, Interim Superintendent of Ridgefield Public Schools Letizia Pantoliano said that the district “cannot legally comment on personnel or student matters,” but wants the public to know that “the District immediately suspended the staff member while it is conducting a full investigation.”