THESE KIDS TODAY:
A couple of students walked past, and I silently counted to see how long it would be take before someone deployed the Effenheimer, or the dreaded Mother Effenheimer. Three seconds. I’m not in favor of having nuns patrol with nail-studded two-by-fours, but on the other hand, I am. Or least some authority figure around which the Youts would feel compelled to display a civil tongue. I was talking with one of the neighbors at the bus stop; she’d been to the school last week, and one of the students hit on her.
THINK OF THE CHILDREN:
My child is not going there.
WHY WHEN I WAS A BOY:
It made me recall my own high school experience, of course; can't rub against a particle of modernity without scurrying back to Norman Rockwell-land, where I can safely shake my fist and make hooting bluster-monkey sounds. But. It was different, and it wasn't that long ago. We had a few ruffians, but they confined their anti-social behavior to smoking between classes, talking too loudly in the cafeteria, and slumping in the back row of English class and drawing skulls on their jeans. The idea that anyone would have shouted MOTHERFARKER in the hallways was unthinkable, and I suppose this makes me sound very old. But there’s no good reason we had to concede that particle of decorum.
NOW LET ME TELL YOU WHAT I THINK:
I imagine that the school’s staff has bigger things to deal with, but I suspect that some of the larger issues of behavior could be made a tad more manageable by addressing the smaller issues. Just a thought from an amateur.
Yes, James. That would make it all better. Civility; propriety; a sternly enforced ban on cursing and problems like poverty, institutional dysfunction, violence, miseducation and bad parenting would all wither on the vine. We know. We know.