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National media is having a field day with New Mayor Ras Baraka’s humiliating failure to see through a transparent scam. As most everyone knows by now, Baraka suffered what CBS News calls a “giant embarrassment” because he, along with the whole City Council, held an earnest signing ceremony marking Newark’s “sister city” relationship with the Hindu nation of the United States of Kailasa,
At that ceremony Baraka told a Kailasa delegate, “I pray that our relationship helps us to understand cultural, social and political development and improves the lives of everybody in both places.”
Baraka would be better off praying for more discernment, or at least more astute aides: there is no “Kailasa.” An Indian scam artist fabricated the whole thing. No one thought to wonder what a Hindu island was doing off the coast of South America. No one thought to Google this unheard-of country that Newark was taking as its sibling.
Baraka looks like a sucker.
I think he’s been spending too much time with Newark Superintendent Roger Leon.
After all, this education leader is a scam artist too: lying to parents about student test scores, lying to the State Department of Education about student achievement at the city’s stellar charter school sector, lying (perhaps) to the School Board about illegality of approving a ten-year contract extension for himself, lying that he knew nothing about the anti-Black racism at a city high school. If Leon says it, it must be true!
If there’s a country no one ever heard of, it must exist!
The comedian (and former White House aide) Kal Penn, while hosting the Daily Show this week, decided to “check in on my home state of New Jersey,” adding that “I’m sure they’re not doing anything incredibly stupid.”
“Jesus, Newark,” Penn said on The Daily Show. “How can an entire city get catfished? Not a single person realized they never heard of this country before? If you can’t find it as a cuisine on Grubhub, it’s not a real country.”
There must have been so many red flags,” Penn added. “The biggest one being that anyone wanted to be sister cities with Newark.”
There must be so many red flags that Superintendent Leon is in it for himself, not for Newark’s students.