Thursday, October 15, 2009

"Human nature does not reform itself via such milquetoast and good intentions."

Binky over at the Free Canuckistan! blog has an insightful post on schools and "pointy dangerous owwies" (scroll down). Here is what he tells his kids about the real world:

I tell them to defend themselves and others as needed, and to hit back, ask questions later. The bizarro world of the 2009 politically correct school-yard means you get anti-bullying lectures and pledges and coloured rubber bracelets.. but look out in the schoolyard, because you’ll still get you’re ass kicked when the teachers are out of view. Human nature does not reform itself via such milquetoast and good intentions. It’s 'The Dangerous Book for Boys,' real world.

PC types often forget that the real world is different from the utopia that they envision. We can wish that the world was full of ponies and pretty flowers (actually, I don't, that sounds really boring), but the reality is, someone who wants to do harm others will not be stopped by all the PC nonsense. In fact, it will be seen by those who are potentially dangerous as hypocrisy and stupidity. Maybe teaching kids how to be responsible for their actions by demonstrating that adults are responsible for theirs would be a start.

Update: Thanks to the commenters who pointed out that I incorrectly attributed the above post to Mark Steyn rather than the blogger who writes the Free Canuckistan!blog. It's now corrected.

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Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

TO: Dr. Helen, et al.
RE: As T.R. Fehrenbach Put It....

PC types often forget that the real world is different from the utopia that they envision. -- Dr. Helen his classic work, This Kind of War.....

This liberal society has no use or need for legions—as its prophets have long proclaimed.

Except that in this world are tigers.
-- Chapter 25

Liberal society may FEEL that it has no need for legions. But one would have thought they had learned that mistake on September 11, 2001.

Apparently, liberal society has a VERY short attention span. Maybe they need better drugs. The sort they want to give to kids.


[Any kind of war, short of jihad was, is and will be unpopular with the [liberal society] people. Because such wars are fought with legions, and Americans even when they are proud of them, do not like their legions. -- T.R. Fehrenbach]

9:32 AM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Ern said...

I don't think that Mark Steyn wrote that post; it looks to me as if it's written by somebody who admires him, but not by Steyn himself.

10:29 AM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Bill said...

My biggest regret was that I was almost through high-school before I realized what the effective strategy for dealing with bullies was: (1) lurk by the school disciplinarian's office, (2) when the bully came by, crawl all over him like a cheap suit.

We both got in trouble, but I got my licks in. The third time it happened, he quit harassing me.

11:17 AM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Chuck Pelto said...

TO: Bill
RE: Heh

(1) lurk by the school disciplinarian's office, (2) when the bully came by, crawl all over him like a cheap suit. -- Bill

I found that putting them in an arm lock and slamming their head down on the beer soaked table works.

But then again, our group was told not to come back to that place again.


P.S. The group's claim to fame was having been thrown out of all the lowest dives in Denver. And this was a SIG of Mensa. One of the members was a 'junkyard dog' who actually OWNED a junkyard.....

11:29 AM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger DADvocate said...

The PC types have created a world where those who should be punched out aren't because the good people follow the rules. I was in a situation last Saturday where I'd really liked to have done some punching but walked away to avoid the legal hassle.

Flowers would be OK but a world full of ponies is also full of horsehit.

12:52 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Master Doh-San said...

"PC types often forget that the real world is different from the utopia that they envision."

They also forget that "utopia" does not mean "good place"; it means "no (such) place".

3:45 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Alex said...

The problem if you teach our kid to fight back, he'll be suspended/expelled. Now if you can afford a private school or home-schooling great, but otherwise you're up shit creek. My advice to worrying parents, sacrifice the plans of getting the new car and invest in Johnny's private school instead.

4:58 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Dr.Alistair said...

the bully hounded me for months. he was bigger and stronger than me so my adrenalin went for nothing as he pushed me and shoved me and finally hit my head so hard off a fence that my head bled.

still, to this day, i have a scar where the wound got infected and my dad would wash it out each night until it healed.

one day in school it snowed and we played and ran and joked in the dusting that the south of england gets occasionally.

and my buly gave me my chance.

he grabbed me and pulled my aircraft pin from my blazer and threw it in the snow.

laughing he turned to go and i hit him.

i must have hit him dozens of times. that big looming boy who, by sheer size alone commanded supremecy wherever he went.

he went down under the barrage and i kept hitting him until the teachers came running and pulled us apart.

the boy was cut and bleeding and crying and shaking with fear as the teacher led us to the bathrooms to clean up.

she couldn`t have been more than 20 herself and she was visibly shaken and tears ran down her face too.

i don`t remember what she said other than she had a welsh accent, and that she comforted me.

comforted me.

i will never forget that moment.

i have never felt physical fear since.

my youngest boy was bullied at school and his mother hid the fact from me until one day he came to me crying that he couldn`t get away from a bully who taunted and teased him.

i asked him what he wanted to do about it.
he said he wanted me to go to the school.

i said no. this is your problem and that you must confront the bully and take him down.

he told me then that the bully was a girl two years older than him.

i told him that the advice was the same.

he took her down the next day at the bus stop in front of teachers and parents.

i wish i could have been hesitate for a moment before grabbing the little man.

yes there was a great wailing and gnashing of teeth over the incedent and it came out that the girl`s father had left her mother recently and blah, blah, blah.....and eventually the gasbags ran flat and we went home and went on with our lives.

the school wanted to expell my son but found extenuating circumstances (fear of a lawsuit....i don`t suffer bullies either) and the whole thing died down.

that was three years ago. now there is a zero tolerance policy and everyone gets expelled automatically.

5:06 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Alex said...

that was three years ago. now there is a zero tolerance policy and everyone gets expelled automatically.

Nice message that sends to the victims of bullying - just be a victim, crouch into a fetal position and don't fight back. What a wonderful way to teach real world survival skills, NOT!

5:10 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Dr.Alistair said...

bureaucrats don`t want to be bothered dealing with the situatuion on a case-by-case basis. too costly. just tag `em and bag `em.

we are just slaves to them.

we choose to be who we want to be, and the cost is dear.

my ex ranted at me mercilesly for telling my boy to kick the bullies ass.

she would prefer to have him cowed by a girl.

5:27 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Alex said...

dr. alistair - if you say we are already in slave state, what do you recommend? Is all hope lost?

5:30 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Francis W. Porretto said...

Please remember that the primary mission of the "public" schools isn't to educate, but to condition the kids to automatic submission to authority. Obviously, a child who's armed, or who's ready and willing to defend himself or others at need, isn't yet broken to harness. Can't have those around; they'd mess up the program.

5:31 PM, October 15, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I told my 8 yo daughter that if she is ever knocked own by a bully, she is to get up and start hitting the bully as hard as she can.

Her eyes about popped out of her head.

Yes, she'll probably be expelled, but there are worse things in life than getting kicked out of school for defending one's self.

My 5 yo will receive the same advice next year.

5:55 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger rowsdower said...

I think talk show host Jim Quinn best sums up the type of anti-common sense attitudes displayed in this and so many other situations:
"Liberals believe that 50000 years of human history means nothing now that they're here"

8:27 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Denton said...

My grandson was being bullied by the kid two houses down, who is 2 years older than him, and a head taller.

My daughter took the issue up with the school authorities.

I enrolled him in Taekwondo.

Judging from what he can now do to a board, he can break three ribs and bloody a nose before a bully can get a second punch in. End of problem.

11:59 PM, October 15, 2009  
Blogger Dr.Alistair said...

alex, i recommend living a life as seperate from politics and bureaucracy as possible.

my clients are asked to make as much of thier time media-free. it is difficult at first, but as the time goes by, one finds other things to do.

we get drawn into media as a way of entertaining ourselves, but trying to parse the never-ending stream of new threats and promises coming down the pipe is demoralising.

take up a hobby. go for a walk. get a cat. anything but turn on the t.v.

and alex, what does hope represent to you? hope is never lost. we own hope. we don`t need anyone to tell us what hope is, especially a politician or a bureaucrat.

tragically francis you are right. sit up straight until the bell is the only command.

and dogwood, there is nothing greater in life than to hold your children close. love them unconditionally and they will grow tall.
make the time they are expelled important as family time. a ritual of family love and honour.
the collectivist conspiracy is to crush the family. if we, as parents build a strong sense of family, they can`t ever break that.

9:56 AM, October 16, 2009  
Blogger TMink said...

These are moving and encouraging stories, well, some are totally exasperating, but moving none the less.

I think that this is as much a parent problem as a school problem, maybe more so. I often deal with parents of disruptive kids who are angry at the school for treating the child like a disruptive kid. There is a sense that nobody can discipline their child but them. Not a step parent, not a teacher, certainly not another adult. There is no sense of community trust and involvement.

Then there are parents who do not discipline their children at all. They are too addicted or too busy being victims and wards of the state to care or have time for raising their children. I feel for the teachers and school people in these cases. What can they do when the parents actively fight the school in dealing with a feral child?

Zero tolerance is not the answer, quite obviously. But how do we as a culture demand that parents parent?


10:02 AM, October 16, 2009  
Blogger Dr.Alistair said...

oh and yeah, this is something you can do right now, without any third-party intervention, no licencing , courses or certification.

just roll your sleeves up and begin to live your life for yourself.


a little scary at first, but exhilerating to think that you no longer need to have an official position from a talking head to feel good about a decision for you and your family.

10:07 AM, October 16, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The expected badmouthing of the school system et al. In fact, you don't like how schools operate then home school:called free choice.

Fight back: easy enough to say but strong bullies know in fact potential victims and those weaker kids unable to fight back.
true case: my son picked on by a school bully. We reported to cops. Cops told us the kid's father probably gang connected and the kid a serious trouble maker. Trouble maker taken out of school after a number of fights and sent for help. Bully changed and no longer a bully doing very well in school now.

11:16 AM, October 17, 2009  
Blogger Dr.Alistair said...

fred, telling the cops gets excuses from them. my advice if you are living near to children of gang members...move.

easier said than done i suppose, but i would.

you can`t win in situations such as that. the game those people play is murder.

i have lost to bullies too. one guy punched me so hard in the face that i had a black golf ball shaped bruise on my cheek for a week.

i was 12 and he was 15 or so.

he would be less inclined today.

8:55 PM, October 17, 2009  
Blogger Gprofessionals said...

I am 100% sure that this post was not written by Steyn. I can recognize his writing. I am a big admirer of him and haven't read this post earlier.
CD Rates

3:59 AM, October 18, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In fact, you don't like how schools operate then home school:called free choice.

I pay for those schools so I'm not inclined to run away if I don't like the ways things are being run.

The school board members also are elected, which provides parents another means of addressing concerns.

Running from bullies only encourages them. Allowing administrators and school boards to run things without accountability just encourages them to continue in their stupidity.

Run if you want, but I prefer to stand my ground and fight.

2:54 PM, October 18, 2009  
Blogger Michael Lee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:54 PM, October 18, 2009  
Blogger Joe said...

For several of the above, what do you do when the teachers and administrators are the bullies? My daughter had a vice-principle in junior high who was worse than any bully I'd ever known. I think I was one of the first parents to stand up to him, but I doubt it changed anything.

One of my problems with the latest PC shit is that it's really about giving people in power an extraordinary amount of power. Just look at the story below; even if the kid was wrong, 45 days suspension? That's just ludicrous and an abuse of power.

2:33 AM, October 19, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Liberals are only mildly annoyed with bullies.

They are, however, furiously intolerant and ready to shred the people who refuse to be victims.

Without a society of victims, liberalism means nothing. Kind of like a narcissist alone on a deserted island with nobody to exploit.

11:23 AM, October 19, 2009  
Blogger Dr.Alistair said...

you hit the nail on the head kevin.

we have been conditioned to be too polite.

what would clint eastwood do?

12:39 PM, October 19, 2009  
Blogger Alex said...

what would clint eastwood do?

He'd have a jazzy moment.

12:52 PM, October 19, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dr. al: "we have been conditioned to be too polite." No. The Brits have. I can see your angle here, but somehow I don't think conditioning is at play. I think it's a tragic attempt to shift certain values from primary to secondary and vice versa.

Liberals and conservatives (and libertarians, etc.) are all like little kids on a playground, and a game of dodgeball breaks out. When most of the kids are merging into teams, the liberal, who hates dodgeball, rather than content himself with sitting ont he sidelines or being a fabulous male cheerleader, runs his yap about how dodgeball is evil and people who play it are demented. Then he tattles to a like-minded teacher who lectures the children about aggression and the chance that they have an extra Y chromosome. The teacher culls the group, sending some of the children to "Time Out" where they can reflect on their transgressions against decent society, while the more rambunctious kids are strapped to a gurney and given an IV drip loaded with Ritalin to mediate their ADHD. The ones who don't respond to medication are castrated and lobotomized.

Holy sh*t!

I was wrong. It IS conditioning!

My bad.

10:27 AM, October 20, 2009  

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