My 1995 letter to the editor of the Washington Post

The Post owes me an apology for its editorial’s mischaracterization of my candidacy for the school board in Fairfax County. The statement that “neither Douglas J. Barylski nor Virginia F. Shea appears to be comfortable in the middle of the road” is extremely unfair to me. I oppose the introduction of creationism into the science curriculum, vouchers for private schools and school-sponsored prayer or student-led prayer in the classroom. I support Superintendent Spillane and the current Family Life Education program.

Many voters this year are wary of so-called “stealth candidates,” who may appear moderate but have a right-wing agenda. Therefore the editorial’s insinuations are especially damaging to my reputation. The Post has no factual basis for saying that I am not comfortable in the middle of the road.

It doesn’t take a Sherlock Holmes to study my public record. It is far more extensive than those of my two opponents combined. I have testified at numerous public hearings on a variety of mainstream topics, ranging from the budget to safety and security. For the past seven years, I have been Fairfax County’s leading advocate of an improved elementary school schedule. We should give the students a full day of school on Mondays and give teachers more planning time from Tuesday through Friday. The students need to be in school on Monday afternoons, not out playing in the streets or “in the middle of the road.”

VIRGINIA F. “GINGER” SHEA

Sunday, November 5, 1995

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