This story about an 8-year-old boy who was suspended for drawing a picture of Jesus on the cross has been making the rounds, and the proper interpretation should be obvious. However, I’ll restate it to make sure we’re all on the same page: Public schools are run by some of the most hysterical, ignorant, and foolish people under the celestial dome. If this was news to you, however, I might also note that grass is green and the sky is blue.
Anyone who is still surprised by stories like this deserves a prize for possessing a Pollyanna complex of epic proportions. Recent experience has taught us that the more grindingly regimented and absurd American life becomes, the more America deserves it. After all, what disturbs most here is not the reaction of the school, which is about as shocking as the sun rising in the east. What disturbs is that after their child was suspended and subjected to a forced psychological examination, the parents’ response was to meekly ask that their child be transferred to another government school in the same district. Such a move belies the alleged outrage that the father mustered up for the reporter who wrote the story.
Had the father been truly outraged, he would have pulled his child out of school and placed him in an institution run by sane people. Or perhaps even home schooled him. However, if this family is like the typical American family, private schooling and home schooling are simply too onerous and inconvenient when money and time must be spent on far more important items such as plasma televisions and trips to Walt Disney World. Plus, educating children is such a tedious bore. Why not let the government do it?
The education of children is a distant 5th or 6th on the priority list of middle-class Americans who whiled away the bubble years racking up credit-card debt to finance 10,000-calorie meals at Outback Steakhouse while purchasing a shiny new SUV every 18 months. Such families were, however, sure to buy houses they couldn’t afford in a “good” school district where the tots would have the opportunity to be suspended, arrested, and psychologically examined for bringing a boy scout pen knife to a shiny and expensive prison-school rather than one of the dilapidated prison-schools.
Besides, what kid wouldn’t rather be ball-tapped in a “highly-ranked” school than in a “low performing” one?11:53 pm on December 15, 2009 Email Ryan McMaken