The Internet is, but it has nothing to do with the election. This time it has to do with what happened to a 6-year-old autistic boy at his West Virginia elementary school.
Caleb’s dad Kent Squires took to Facebook with the story of his son’s Thanksgiving Play. Caleb was so excited to play the role of the turkey during his first grade play, and could not wait to say his line, “gobble gobble.” Unfortunately he never got the chance to say his line, as his teacher stepped in just as it was his turn to speak.
The footage is heartbreaking. Watch as Caleb steps up to the microphone and is just about to speak when he teacher abruptly walks up to the stage, removes the microphone, turns her back and walks away. Even worse is that she continues to walk away even as Caleb stands there in his turkey costume crying, and saying “No, no.”
Many commenters also pointed out that many parents can be heard laughing at the little boy, and wonder how anyone could be so cruel and callous.
Here is the video Kent Squires shared on the Autism Speaks Facebook page, writing, “This is my little boy in his thanksgiving play he is the last kid and has level one high functioning autism he has the biggest heart and always happy now watch it and see what a teacher of kids does to him he has came home from school and said he gets to say gobble gobble cause he was playing the Turkey I am reaching out to see if something can be don’t”
The video is going viral, with people expressing their outrage over the teacher’s actions. Many call for her to be fired, with one commenter writing, “For her to act like that in front of parents, I can only imagine what a nasty person she is behind closed doors. I pray that your boy gets justice for this.”
Another woman wrote, “I am a teacher, and I have every authority to say that people like this have no business in any classroom. It is extremely hard to fire teachers because of the unions, but I hope the principal and board go through every hurdle to get this woman fired and away from all children.”
According to reports, the Superintendent expressed his dismay over the video and the teacher’s behavior, but said that it was not grounds for dismissal.
The video made international news, and was picked up by Ellen. Caleb’s mom Amanda Riddle has been posting updates on her Facebook page, as well as the contact information for the school and district so people can show their support. She shared a thank you message, and said she was hoping to get the school board to admit they were wrong to stand behind this teacher because she says she knows “it’s not just my kid that goes through this.”
Riddle also set up a Facebook Group to continue to fight for justice called #teamgobblegobble.