Big Elephant, Little Elephant Assembly Divides the School

Big Elephant, Little Elephant Assembly Divides the School

Troy Peternell, Reporter/Editor

 On September 9, Stu Cabe gave a speech at Capital High School about elephants and bullying and being kind, and it proved to be controversial.

The assemblies at Capital are designed to bring people together, and yet Stu’s speech divided the community at Capital. The basis of the assembly was how little elephants copy what big elephants do and how this can be translated to a high school environment (Freshmen ape the seniors). The moment that split opinion was when Stu singled out several students for talking, and repeatedly called them out; some saw this as, ironically, a form of bullying in an anti-bullying assembly, while others felt that it proved his point about big elephants and little elephants perfectly.

On the one hand, Stu’s speech touched many people. 

“I kind of felt bad at things I’ve done before,” said Orland Jensen.

“It had a positive impact and still carries on with me,” said Rylee Frost. “That was like the perfect example,” said Auburn Rohaly. 

“He connected what was going on with the students,” said Hayden Warrior. “He showed a real example.” Jackson Sawatzky called the Big Elephant, Little Elephant analogy a “creative way of expressing” a familiar theme.

On the other hand, other students thought the speech was odd, especially the moment when Stu singled out a few kids for talking during the assembly. 

“He went too far singling out two people for half an hour,” said Brennan O’Sullivan. 

“I thought that it was pretty ironic that two kids were getting bullied in an anti-bullying assembly,” said Daniel Thompson.

The other major element that caused controversy was Cabe’s repeated jokes directed at the freshmen. 

“It was kind of odd,” Thompson said, “I don’t feel like it added to his case.”

“He was super hypocritical,” said Jordan Ziegler. “His entire speech was about how everybody should be big elephants and not put people down; however, all he did in the assembly was bully and put some poor freshmen down.” Ziegler nonetheless felt Cabe’s speaking skills were “quite good.”

Will Stu Cabe be back next year? After the divisiveness he has created, it is hard to know whether the administration will want him again. Either way, never has an assembly at Capital been as divisive as this one.