Down at the school meeting, Mrs. Mackoul gives an introductory speech condemning the board's decision not to allow Yasmine into the school, and then she opens up the floor to comments and questions. The first guy to speak up looks mean, so you already know he's going to be a redneck. Unfortunately, many other parents nod in agreement as he summarizes his point at the end of this speech thusly: "If we've never had Muslims at this school, why on earth would we make it a point to include a Muslim now, when it could put the lives of children of other races and religions in jeopardy?" I'm not sure I follow his "logic." Does he think all Muslims are terrorists and that Muslim children come to school packing heat? After another dumb-ass speaks up, Mrs. Mackoul introduces Ruthie, who starts off by extolling the school's virtues. She moves on to how she learned about the function of the spine in one of her classes, turning this into something confusing about not being able to hold her head up if the board won't admit Yasmine into the Eleanor Roosevelt school. She tops that off with talking about what a strong spine Eleanor Roosevelt "has [sic]." Um, Ruthie? I'm sure Eleanor was a terrific lady and all, but she's been dead since 1962, so I'm really not sure how strong her spine is anymore or, quite frankly, what use she would have for a strong spine now. In closing, Ruthie threatens to leave the school if the board does not reverse their decision. The silence is deafening. Finally, Annie and RevCam stand up and applaud. They are joined by Mrs. Mackoul and Ms. Riddle, but not a single other person applauds. Not a single person, out of an entire auditorium filled with people. This doesn't exactly reaffirm my faith in mankind.
Mary and Lucy praise Ruthie for her actions, but Ruthie's still feeling glum, since it looks like she's going to have to change schools now. So she won't have equestrian classes anymore, but honestly, who would want to attend a school where every single one of the students' parents is an asshole? Mary comments that it can be hard "to do the right thing." She adds, "It's not easy when you do stupid things and have to make up for them." She's obviously speaking from experience. Ruthie suggests, "It's not easy when you do smart things either," and Mary just smiles and nods vacantly as if she has even the slightest clue of what it would be like to do a smart thing.