Monday, June 09, 2008

Goo Goo clusters

Sometimes the pieces just fall together.

This morning's Rex Noseworthy column introduced me to a new term.

Increasingly, those in and around Metro government aligned with more moderate politics and business elements in the city are coining a new phrase to describe their self-proclaimed progressive adversaries — the Goo Goos.

It appears this mildly derisive term is aimed at Nashville’s neighborhood-centric gentry, the same neighborhood forces that frequently clash with pro-development types. The more specific iteration is East Nashville Goo Goo.

The phrase was first coined in the final decade of the 19th Century to describe “good government” political factions in city governments seeking change, reform and a path away from machine politics.

And then we get this--also from the folks at the City Paper:
Stacy Mosley, president of the Historic Germantown Neighborhood Association, said Friday that residents of downtown neighborhoods moved there, at a risk, with the “promise” that their children could attend high-performing Hillsboro cluster schools. Mosley said she and other neighbors want their children to attend schools with “balanced” racial and socioeconomic mixes.
I put the pieces together and it was just too obvious: I'm thinking that 'progressive' neighborhood groups should be called "GooGoo clusters". Insert your own joke about their being nuts in every version.

Back on a much more serious note it's a curiosity to me how un-progressive these GooGoos are when the rubber hits the road as it has with these Germantown parents. I understand they took a chance on that part of town but also ensured, as best they could, that their children would attend 'high-performing Hillsboro cluster' schools. Would they have taken that same chance if the Hillsboro Cluster hadn't been available? No one really believes they would have. Likely what they'll do is what the East Nashville GooGoos did, opt out of the neighborhood school and create an enhanced option or design school. These 'urban pioneers' shouldn't pat themselves on the back for their support of public schools when they've done that. The parents who really deserve badges of honor for supporting MNPS are those who rolled up their sleeves and ensured their children graduated from Maplewood or Stratford.

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