Tuesday, August 05, 2008

1934? That's older than John McCain!

Fact: Louisiana has chosen the winner in the last 11 presidential elections.

Fact #2: If current polls are any indicator, that streak will snap with a vengeance in November.

Fact #3: This will be because Louisiana is often known for being a tad behind the times. Like, say, 74 years.

Basically: "When I was in school back in 1934, our teacher picked up an unruly student with one hand and whomped the stuffin' outta him! And we bee-haved after that!"

Actual, hotter excerpt: "Mrs. Mays stopped teaching and came down the aisle toward us. She grabbed Fred by the back of his shirt and held him out at arm's length, with his feet dangling just above the floor. With her right hand she hit him on the fat part of his buttocks and then jammed him down into his desk and went back to her desk and started teaching again."

Of course! It's so simple! Maybe if we released teachers from their bureaucratic shackles and let them spank to their hearts' content, then maybe we could end this 74-year streak of no one ever learning anything. Damn hippies.

I, for one, always pined for the 1934 educational experience. The discipline. The conformity. Only one World War to remember. The "we give up" hairstyles. The innocence.

"We're bad! Beat us with a switch!"

Such pro-beating sentiment takes a lot to top. Help me out, Advertiser commenters:

"Fear is the beginning of wisdom. If teaching by intimidation didn't work, no one would do it."

"Fear is nothing but awareness." -- Beach Boy Dennis Wilson, after living with Charles Manson long enough.

Authority should be respected, not feared. Fear may be a fantastic control tool, but it does very little to foster the sort of lasting respect that sustains positive influence. Indeed, rigid authoritarian structure might cause a kid to rebel and create lasting wounds that never fully heal. There are plenty of rebels in south Louisiana.

"It was so much easier and more fun to teach in the 80s when kids did their work, behaved in class, and never talked back to the teacher."

Couldn't have been one of my teachers from the 1980s who said that - they always said how the kids were out of control these days, what with their Nike Airs and Commodore 64s and Garbage Pail Kids cards.

(True story: my elementary-school principal decided to ban Garbage Pail Kids cards after asking my brother and I what had us and all our friends so excited as we boarded the bus. She took a look at my brother's cards and said quietly, "No. No Garbage Pail Kids" and sent us on our way. We brought them back anyway. Such an anarchic time.)

But you know, maybe one day I'll settle down in the heart of family-friendly Louisiana, have a litter of kiddies and in 2082 write a letter about how much better things were back in the good old days of 2008, when kids were too busy on their iPods to raise trouble, but then the 60s came around and destroyed the fabric of family and Facebook, and now anarchy reigns once again. You know, just like it always has. And always will.


jeffrey said...

Fact #2a: Or.. you know... not.

The typical indignant Louisiana response to the "behind the times" charge is to say something to the affect of "we're not as bad as all that"

I prefer, "the rest of the country is just as bad.. or worse"

Hence Fact #2a.

Ian McGibboney said...

Hello, Gloomy Pants! Nice to hear from you.

I get excited sometimes knowing that my presidential vote might actually count for once. Obama wants us to be optimistic and McCain wants us to be pessimistic. So guess where I'm heading?

Michael said...

Kids did their work, behaved in class, and never talked back to the teacher in the 1980s? Where? I seem to have missed those schools.

Or was that quote referring to the 1880s?