Skip to comments.GIRLY NATION
Posted on 09/15/2008 6:28:47 AM PDT by andrew roman
There is a frightening penchant in todays gradually feminizing America for people to abandon their God given ability to think and reason. True authority the kind that summons respect, reverence and even a touch of fear is being pushed aside, condemned as antiquated patriarchal nonsense, for more progressive methods of trying to maintain order. Thus, authority itself is emasculated, common sense is effectively castrated and unintended consequences create new difficulties where there should be none.
In New York City, for example, students are not permitted to carry their cell phones into school with them (except in very specific circumstances). Apparently, the beeping, chirping and ringing in classrooms was enough of a distraction to prompt a flat-out city-wide ban even though the vast majority of students do not use them while in school.
Most kids, in fact, use their cell phones to stay in contact with parents after school. Seeing as city-street pay phones are quickly going the way of the eight-track tape, cell phones have proven at least in this context a positive thing. So, whats wrong with that? Yet, instead of each school being allowed to formulate its own rules regarding cell phone usage during classroom hours, an easy, dismissive, all-encompassing, band-aid-type fix was applied to a bigger wound, namely the weakened hand of authority.
When void of reasoned thought, ban, ban, ban.
I must ask Why not just confiscate the phones of disruptive students the way teachers used to take away sling shots, secretly scrawled notes or, when I was kid, those hand-held electronic football games? Blaming the technology instead of the student sends the wrong message and it tenderizes the backbones of those charged with power. Instead of just prohibiting cell phone use during school hours and, say, making it compulsory for phones to be turned off upon entering the building and then having the backbone to actually enforce it a cowardly ban was made law.
One unintended consequence? Having kids out of touch with parents or guardians after school when they absolutely dont have to be.
Perhaps more importantly, banning the phone doesnt teach or enforce the value of having to exercise discipline. Despite the popular notion from leftists everywhere, technology is not the problem. As citizens of the greatest, freest and most advanced country the world has ever known, we should want to improve our standard of living, shouldnt we? Why are cell phones somehow beyond the sphere of influence when it comes to teaching our kids restraint, responsibility and self-control?
I make this point, not as an advocate of the cellular phone industry, but as an authentic lament for the changing and misguided role of responsibility and influence in our society.
People simply throw their hands in the air too easily.
To make a somewhat peculiar comparison, it is precisely this thinking that is behind those that blame guns for crime instead of those who use them recklessly or illegally. Indeed, the argument of everything having a time and place is well-taken. However, law abiding citizens who possess firearms are absolutely no threat to society. Only criminals are. Banning guns doesnt keep bad people from acquiring or using them. By the same token, students who abide by the rules (and have the value system to know whats appropriate and what is not) by keeping their cell phones turned off during school hours are no threat to disrupt the classroom not with the phone anyway. Conversely, kids who have no regard or respect for the school and its authority will still manage to sneak them in and disrupt things.
It is about values, not technology.
In Cedar Lake, Indiana, the latest move by school administrators to foster a culture of safety has been implemented namely, the banning of all carry bags in school, including purses. Apparently, the ludicrous rule has been on the books for three years but is only now being enforced. The reason? To make it more difficult for students to carry weapons and drugs into school.
Book bags, purses and other lethal carriers must be left in lockers during school hours. One student commented, People even got yelled at for carrying fanny packs and too big of a pencil holder, which is ridiculous."
How about a push to ban pockets?
Perhaps an all-sandal policy should be executed to keep students from sneaking things into school via their sneakers?
At one time, clearly defined boundaries of acceptable and unacceptable were the norm. If rules were violated, the offender was punished. Behaviors that once had stigmas attached to them became more accepted. What were once good old fashion expulsions from school became in-house suspensions. Fostering discipline and maintaining order were replaced with getting in touch with ones feelings and having the right to express them. The line of thought that endorses the handing out of awards and medals to kids for simply participating in a given activity (so as to cheapen the kid who genuinely earns the award) is prevalent almost everywhere. The burden of actually having the courage to instill and reinforce good values in students is apparently too much for educators these days, lest they offend anyone. Citizenship classes have been replaced with save the earth curriculums, safe-sex programs, and free condoms on demand.
How delightful. It is the feminization of society.
Denene Reppa, mother of one of the Cedar Lake, Indiana students who now must run to their lockers in between each class to get the needed book instead of being able to carry several in a book bag, said, Those types of organizational skills will transfer when she goes to college. Very important She can keep her other things in there as well that kind of relate to her being a female."
Priorities, I guess.
I mourn the slow death of authority.
I don’t support the cell phone ban but I understand why it’s in place.
Do you think the 12year old kid that pulls a knife on you is going to listen when you tell him to stop texting his weed connection during class?
I must be dead —
I mean, how did I *ever* manage to survive my 20-umpteen years of schooling - and even more-umpteen years of living, up until this very minute - without owning a cell phone...
Being *out* of touch occasionally teaches values like self-sufficiency and independent thought....
My point precisely. It isn’t about the cell-phone ban per se, or the book bag ban ...
It’s about the loss of instilling proper values.
Thanks for the reply!
My first question is: do the teachers & administrators get to keep THEIR bags & cellphones? If so, why?
The usual Lefty rot- rule by decree, with no thought to actual consequences.
Wouldn’t want the slaves to have too much freedom, after all.......
Denene, if your daughter is as garbled as you are, I suggest you spend the college-tuition savings on a cruise.
Good article, in some ways, but the real surrender of authority occured when parents turned child-rearing over the the state. All the rest is just details.
I agree with youy whole-heartedly.
The over-arching point of my article is not to praise cell phones. It is the lament of the loss of values.
It isn’t about the technology.
Thanks much for the comments!
“the real surrender of authority occured when parents turned child-rearing over the the state. All the rest is just details.”
There's too many people to be thinking and making decisions about every individual situation. Especially when the thinkers and deciders would be school authorities.
I think that the *newer* reasons for the cell phone ban has more to do with students cheating during tests. Students can now text questions and answers to others; they can even photograph them to others waiting to take a test.
Even the private schools in our area have joined in on the ban.
I agree with your basic thesis — I argue with your choice of example...
The core problem is that the “DECENT CITIZENS AGAINST JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING”, and the Legal System Lottery, have conspired to attempt remove any risk from human exixtence — hence kids on bicycles more heavily armored than Crusading Knights, and draconian Zero Tolerance Policies everywhere...
Advocating cell phone use by children on the theory that they *need* to be ‘in touch’ with parental units 24/7 would seem to be part of the cotton-wrapping.....
I appreciate your points very much.
The point, as I attempted to articulate, was not that children NEED to be in touch with parents - that is, unless the parents themselves feel that way. That cell phones make things easier for many parents is not the thing to question here, in my mind. That’s a separate issue altogether. The fact that the instilling of values, limits and discipline has gone by the way-side is my point.
The extent of “cotton-wrapping” by parents is entirely a separate issue. My issue is with the nanny-ing of children by the state through regulations, rules and lack of common sense.
Unfortunately, it can't be. The legal climate won't allow schools to flunk or expel students who violate school rules, any more than they're allowed to fire teachers who are scr*wing the students.
Want to get cell phones out of the classroom? Issue a hammer to each teacher, and if a cell phone is in use, whether it's for cheating or just disruption, WHAM. Never happen, though.
Yes. Government schooling, the NEA and our universities were infiltrated by Marxist-socialist Frankfurt School minions. And our government is grabbing them at an ever-younger age through early childhood $$$ for public schools.
I think that we’re talking about the same thing - from a couple of different perspectives....
” The extent of cotton-wrapping by parents is entirely a separate issue. My issue is with the nanny-ing of children by the state through regulations, rules and lack of common sense. “
These are not, IMO, ‘separate issues’ — they are both symptoms of the same phenomenon: belief in the modern mythos of absolute feel-good at any cost....
“Want to get cell phones out of the classroom? Issue a hammer to each teacher, and if a cell phone is in use, whether it’s for cheating or just disruption, WHAM. Never happen, though.”
You have captured the spirit of my article perfectly. ALLOW the students to make the mistake of bringing the damned thing into school. Most students will learn self-control and the concept of limits ... Some won’t - as is the case with kids everywhere. This isn’t an article advocating cell phones for kids. That is not the issue. (Perhaps I’ll write an article about that).
It’s about issuing hammers to teachers!
Thanks for the comment.
I think it's part of the same point. Weak-willed parents turned over the upbringing of their children to the state, and they've created an equally weak-willed culture in their proxies. For example, why can't the schools exercise firm discipline? Because parents will sue them. Why can't children run, jump, throw a ball, or ride a bicycle? Because their parents will sue if they get hurt.
The problem is with the public at large, and it's perpetuated in the schools only because the public puts up with it.
See my #19 - the parents would sue for the cost of the cell phone and the incredible emotional trauma to their precious little darling. Even with limits to liability for government employees, this is still going to massively disrupt the (presumed) education process.