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Politics moves into many parts of life

Profile image for Denton Record-Chronicle Editorial
Denton Record-Chronicle Editorial

The brand new Rudy and Rosemary Rodriguez Middle School opens today in Denton.

It's named after a married couple who have contributed so much to civic life in Denton over the years. Publicly, the Rodriguezes stayed silent while the drama surrounding Eric Hauser played out in the newspapers and television newscasts.

Hauser was supposed to be assistant principal at Rodriguez. But he got caught up in controversy after some people complained he had written a children's book that was a thinly veiled diatribe against President Obama's eight years in office and a celebration of President Trump's victory.

The Adventures of Pepe and Pede features heroes Pepe the frog and Pede the centipede, which are both alt-right symbols of conservative Trump supporters.

The villain in Hauser's book is an bearded alligator surrounded by little people clad in burqas, the long, loose garment worn by many Muslim women.

Critics describe the children's book as an anti-Muslim polemic.

Hauser pleaded ignorance about the political significance of Pepe and Pede.

He said he just wanted to write a children's book extolling conservative themes of honesty, teamwork and patriotism.

But Denton ISD wasn't buying his explanation. He is no longer assistant principal at Rodriguez.

Politics, it seems, touches everything these days; even the opening of a new middle school.