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M’TOWN: TEACHER DUMPED OVER TRUMP VIDEO

In the February 28 edition of his cable show,“Last Week Tonight,” comedian John Oliver urged viewers to “make Donald Drumpf again.” 

By JOHN T. WARD

hot-topic_02-220x137-6360205A Middletown High School South history teacher has been forced to resign for showing students a video of comedian John Oliver skewering Republican presidential candidate Donald Drumpf… er, Trump.

According to various news reports, including the New York Post and NJ.com, the forced resignation of Joe Ventre drew protests from supportive students and parents at the school’s board of trustees meeting Wednesday night.

In the video, which first aired on February 28, Oliver, the host of“Last Week Tonight,” challenges Trump’s truthfulness and exhorts viewers to refer to him using the last name of one of the candidate’s ancestors: Drumpf.

Citing News12 New Jersey as the source, NJ.com said Ventre was forced to resign after “at least one parent” complained that he’d shown the video to a class.

YouTube indicates the video has been viewed more than 24 million times.

According to the Post, “Administrators told Ventre to beat it at the end of the school year, sources said. He agreed to step down this coming July.”

According to the reports, parents packed the school board meeting Wednesday night to demand that Ventre be allowed to keep his job. The Post reported that “speakers said Ventre was exercising free speech and had an otherwise impeccable record.”

One objector, Kathi Van Zandt, a sister of rock guitarist Steven Van Zandt, even “reached out to Oliver’s comedic forefather,” Red Bank resident Jon Stewart, for help, according to the Post.

She called the action against Ventre a “travesty” and “ridiculous,” the tabloid reported.

A petition launched by student Lexie Brizzi calling on the school to reinstate Ventre had garnered almost 2,400 signatures by late Friday morning. Students plan to renew their protest at a meeting Tuesday, the Post reported.

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