scouts-l Mail Archive for June of 2000: Re: Zero Tolerance absurdity
Sun Jun 04 2000 - 08:31:32 CDT
In a message dated 6/3/00 12:44:19 AM Pacific Daylight Time,
> Consider the nature of the situation we have been discussing. Certainly
> the possession of a pocket knife in a classroom is more serious than a
> camping hatchet in the trunk of a car in the parking lot. It wouldn't take
> much thinking to make the punishment fit the crime. The operative word
> here is 'thinking.'
When I attended high school back in the 60s, there were no rules against
pocket knives or even guns in school. I carried a pocket knife daily -- on my
belt in a leather pouch I made at scout camp! Why weren't classrooms violent
places back then? The problem isn't the presence of a potentially dangerous
item in school (or anywhere else).
The problem is the decay of our society and our collective refusal to accept
responsibility for our actions (all the way up to the highest office in the
nation) and to expect a sense responsibility in others (all the way up to the
highest office in the nation). Most important is the failure of a
frighteningly large percentage of parents to take responsibility for teaching
their children right and wrong and holding them accountable.
Another factor, I believe, was all my teachers wore suit and tie or skirt and
blouse when on the job. Teachers today wear jeans and T-shirts. And they
wonder why they get no respect (even Rodney Dangerfield wears a suit)!
The good news is, the aims of Scouting can fix all of this. The bad news is,
Scouting has long been under repeated assault for attempting to define what
is "morally straight" and for attempting to inspire a duty to God.