It’s Gotta Go Wednesday

When my first-born was in preschool, WAY BACK, I remember being shocked when his teacher told me that they were not allowed to say the word “Christmas”. WHAT IN THE HELL!?! There were also other district-banned words associated with this holiday, and I could not believe what I was hearing. His wonderful teacher had similar feelings, and pretty much ignored the rules.

Since then, there have been so many bans in my kid’s school, its sadly comical. Let’s see, we’ve got:

  • no medicine WHAT SO EVER, unless it goes through the school nazi nurse. Not even a Tylenol, a cough drop, or multi-vitamin. OK, I get it, they don’t want drugs at school, or children sharing meds. Blah blah blah. As a mother, if my kid has a cough, I think I should be able to send a throat lozenge without going through my doctor and having her fill out the ridiculous paperwork. *** On a personal note, I experienced this myself last year. One of my children was supposed to take some supplements at lunch time. Blood tests had shown he was deficient in a couple of minerals/vitamines, and his doctor wanted him to take a few supplements (b-12 & zinc). This was over-the-counter stuff kids, not medicinal marijuana. I will skip the details, suffice it to say that I was sent on a wild goose chase of paper work and it was frustrating and incredibly stupid. I got so much conflicting information from the school staff, and once I’d complete what I was told they needed, then something else would have to be filled out. It was crap.
  • No masks at Halloween time. AND as of last year, they cut the Halloween parade. I loved going to the school each year and watching all of the kids in the school parade through the lunch room and show off their costumes. The reason was that the kids missed out on “learning time”. OK, I volunteered in the kids class parties that day. They were so retardedly hyper and excited, they couldn’t concentrate anyway, and each teacher sort of gave up on trying to teach. They needed a day of fun and play. And once or twice a year… I think it’s OK! Oh yes, and no costume accessories that even resemble a weapon of any kind.
  • Speaking of weapons… yes, I think that all weapons should be banned. But your kid better not talk about a gun or sword, or even draw one. When my son was in kindergarten, he drew a picture of a war with soldiers fighting. That won him a trip to the principal’s office.

There are many others, but my point is this: I think that we’ve become SO overly cautious (and PC) that not only is it making life more difficult, but I think it’s keeping our children from experiencing some important growing pains. As a parent, I have been equally concerned with the social learning at school as I am the academic aspect. There are situations at school that I think kids NEED to experience in order to learn. They need to learn how to resolve fights with friends/peers without an immediate interference from an adult. When there is a problem and a parent or teacher jumps in, it robs that child of the opportunity to learn from that experience. It’s the best lesson in conflict resolution! When a situation is uncomfortable for a child, and we as adults change things to make it more comfortable, it can sometimes do more harm than good. That child is robbed of an opportunity to learn how to compromise or internally comfort and settle themselves if never in a situation where they have to. I am quite conservative when it comes to safety in our schools, and pretty much all things kids, but come on… haven’t we gone too far?

Even more frustrating to me is changing the “rules” to accommodate the minority. The “no Christmas” thing came about when a child’s parent who was not Christian complained that it violated her rights and was being disrespectful to her and her beliefs. OK, I get why they think it was an issue, but I see 2 problems with this. 1) do you change behaviors, traditions, celebrations that is in line with what the  majority (probably 90%) of the population practice to appease the very small minority? I think it’s OK to teach kids that they don’t have to participate in something that is not in line with their beliefs, but that does not give them the right to ask others to not participate. 2) More importantly, I am afraid what message this sends to children. In life, aka… the REAL world… just because you don’t like something doesn’t mean that EVERYONE has to give it up or compromise to make you feel comfortable. When these kids (and all kids) grow up and are out there in the workplace,  are they going to tell a boss “no” because they don’t feel like doing something? I worry that our kids are growing up with such an incredible (and scary) sense of entitlement, what kind of adults, employees, friends, parents are they going to be?

When I was in high school, there was a girl who didn’t make the cheerleading squad (in our school, those who made the “cut” were then voted on by the school body). Instead of taking her loss in stride, she complained, her parents threw a fit and threatened a law suit, and they let her on just to avoid confrontation and problems. Yes, that’s EXACTLY how life should be and the lessons we should teach our children. Cry when you don’t get your way and strong-arm your way through life. Awesome.

I’m not suggesting we rule with an iron fist ( I do not spank NOR do I think that we should resort of physical punishment of any kind in school or at home). I’m simply saying that eradicating every damn possible danger and hurt feelings up to the point we are wrapping our children in bubble wrap with ear plugs and blinders on… it’s gotta go.

Below is an email my dad sent me that’s appropriate to this subject. Funny, true, and kinda sad.

HIGH SCHOOL — 1957 vs. 2011

Scenario                 1:  
Jack C.
goes quail hunting before school and then pulls into the school parking lot with his shotgun in his truck’s gun rack.
1957 –
Vice Principal comes over, looks at Jack’s shotgun, goes to his car and gets his shotgun to show Jack.
2010 –
School goes into lock down, FBI called, Jack hauled off to jail and never sees his truck or gun again. Counselors called in for traumatized students and teachers.

Scenario                 2:  
and Mark get into a fist fight after school.
1957 –
Crowd gathers. Mark wins. Johnny and Mark shake hands and end up buddies.
2010 –
Police called and SWAT team arrives — they arrest both Johnny and Mark.  They are both charged with assault and both expelled even though Johnny started it.

Scenario                 3:  
will not be still in class, he disrupts other students.
1957 –
Jeffrey sent to the Principal’s office and given a good paddling by the Principal.  He then returns to class, sits still and does not disrupt class again.                
2010 –
Jeffrey is given huge doses of Ritalin.  He becomes a zombie. He is then tested for ADD. The family gets extra money (SSI) from the government because Jeffrey has a disability.

Scenario                 4:  
breaks a window in his neighbor’s car and his Dad gives him a whipping with his belt.                
1957 –
Billy is more careful next time, grows up normal, goes to college and becomes a successful businessman.  
2010 –
Billy’s dad is arrested for child abuse, Billy is removed to foster care and joins a gang. The state psychologist is told by Billy’s sister that she remembers being abused herself and their dad goes to prison. Billy’s mom has an affair with the psychologist.

Scenario                 5:  
Mark gets a headache and takes some aspirin to school.

1957 –
Mark shares his aspirin with the Principal out on the smoking dock.
2010 –
The police are called and Mark is expelled from school for drug violations. His car is then searched for drugs and weapons.

Scenario                 6:  
Pedro fails high school English.

1957 –
Pedro goes to summer school, passes English and goes to college.
2010 –
Pedro’s cause is taken up by state. Newspaper articles appear nationally explaining that teaching English as a  requirement for graduation is racist.  ACLU files class action lawsuit against the state school system and Pedro’s English teacher. English is then banned from core curriculum. Pedro is given his diploma anyway but ends up mowing lawns for a living because he cannot speak English.

Scenario                 7:  
Jack C. takes apart leftover firecrackers from the Fourth of July, puts them in a model airplane paint bottle and blows up a red ant  bed.
1957 –
Ants die.
ATF, Homeland Security and the FBI are all called. Johnny is charged with domestic terrorism.  The FBI investigates his parents – and all siblings are removed from their home and all computers are confiscated. Johnny’s dad is placed on a terror watch list and is never allowed to fly again.

Scenario                 8:  
falls while running during recess and scrapes his knee.  He is found crying by his teacher, Mary. Mary hugs him to comfort him.  
1957 –
In a short time, Johnny feels better and goes on playing.                
2010 –
Mary is accused of being a sexual predator and loses her job. She faces 3 years in State Prison. Johnny undergoes 5 years of therapy.

Explore posts in the same categories: Damn it, Family, General Stuff, Kids, Life

One Comment on “It’s Gotta Go Wednesday”

  1. Matt Says:

    These policies are virtual veal pens for kids.

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