Friday, August 10, 2007

See What 51 Years Will Do: 1956-2007

I received this in an e-mail. I thought it was interesting. Tell me what you think is wrong/right...what should be added/left out.

Scenario: Jack pulls into school parking lot with rifle in gun rack.

1956 - Vice Principal comes over, takes a look at Jack's rifle, goes to his car and gets his to show Jack.

2007 - School goes into lockdown, FBI called, Jack hauled off to jail and never sees his truck or gun again. Counselors called in for traumatized students and teachers.

Scenario: Johnny and Mark get into a fist fight after school.

1956 - Crowd gathers. Mark wins Johnny and Mark shake hands and end up best friends. Nobody goes to jail, nobody arrested, nobody expelled.

2007 - Police called, SWAT team arrives, arrests Johnny and Mark. Charge them with assault, both expelled even though Johnny started it.

Scenario: Jeffrey won't be still in class, disrupts other students.

1956 - Jeffrey sent to office and given a good paddling by Principal. Sits still in class.

2007 - Jeffrey given huge doses of Ritalin. Becomes a zombie. School gets extra money from state because Jeffrey has a disability.

Scenario: Billy breaks a window in his father's car and his Dad gives him a whipping.

1956 - Billy is more careful next time, grows up normal, goes to college, and becomes a successful businessman.

2007 - Billy's Dad is arrested for child abuse. Billy removed to foster care and joins a gang. Billy's sister is told by state psychologist that she remembers being abused herself and their Dad goes to prison. Billy's mom has affair with psychologist.

Scenario: Mark gets a headache and takes some headache medicine to school.

1956 - Mark shares headache medicine with Principal out on the smoking dock.

2007 - Police called, Mark expelled from school for drug violations. Car searched for drugs and weapons.

Scenario: Pedro fails high school English.

1956 : Pedro goes to summer school, passes English, goes to college.

2007 : Pedro's cause is taken up by state . Newspaper articles appear nationally explaining that teaching English as a requirement for graduation is racist. ACLU files class action lawsuit against state school system and Pedro's English teacher. English banned from core curriculum. Pedro given diploma anyway but ends up mowing lawns for a living because he can't speak English.

Scenario: Johnny takes apart leftover firecrackers from the 4th of July, puts them in a model airplane paint bottle, blows up a red ant bed

1956 - Ants die.

2007 - BATF, Homeland Security, FBI called. Johnny charged with domestic terrorism, FBI investigates parents, siblings removed from home, computers confiscated, Johnny's Dad goes on a terror watch list and is never allowed to fly again.

Scenario: Johnny falls while running during recess and scrapes his knee. He is found crying by his teacher, Mary. Mary, hugs him to comfort him.

1956 - In a short time Johnny feels better and goes on playing.

2007 - Mary is accused of being a sexual predator and loses her job. She faces 3 years in State Prison.

Is something wrong here????


Anonymous said...

Yes, we are becoming weenies incapable of taking any risk and personal responsibility. In 1956, America really was America. In 2007, America is America by name only. I think the legal system must be greatly to blame for this transformation, and I'm pretty sure my children's children will have to live in a bubble "for their own and society's good".

Dr Pezz said...

While I don't glorify the 1950s as the ideal (equality issues, segregation, and the like), I do feel the litigious nature of today's society makes everything much more difficult. And, the state of fear created lately seems to dominate the motivations of many.

EHT said...

Thanks for commenting Anonymous.

Dr. Pezz, I agree. We do tend to believe nothing was wrong during the 1950s and early 60's, but there were many problems in America.

The main difference I see in the list I presented is we are no longer a trusting nation...everything is suspect. This is done with good reason, however, but I tend to believe the main cause is more violence in society and a general moral malaise.

CaliforniaTeacherGuy said...

The "failing English" scenario would be hilarious if I didn't see it being acted out with discouraging regularity in my neck of the woods.

HappyChyck said...

I think we could narrow the 51 years. I think 15 years ago the scenario was pretty close to 1956.

EHT said...

How ya doin' CTG?

Hi Happychyck! Yes, I can agree. Things have slid down the slope awfully fast in the last few years.

Jenny said...

I think there are certainly things we need to be concerned about in this day and age. And I agree that we are too litigious a society.
However, I think we need to be careful about glorifying the past. I've seen this in my email as well and my first thought was that it's too simplistic. The 1950s weren't perfect any more than today is.

EHT said...

Yes, it wasn't the "Leave It to Beaver" world we sometimes portray it as. I've been watching the new show "AdMen" on television and the way women are portrayed is absolutely shocking to me as I come from the 70s burn your bra generation. Still....I know in the 50s and well into the 70s folks in my community knew each other and never locked their doors. That time is gone. Yesterday, on the news I saw three violent home invasions here in the Atlanta area. When my oldest child was young and outside practially all day I left the door unlocked so he and his friends could come and go....I don't know what I would do today if I had small children. I keep my door locked here is surburbia and my neighbors rarely let their children roam.

Anonymous said...

the comments left here further confirm that we don't grasp the loss of individual liberties we have experienced. And 2007-1956=51 years, which is a lot longer than just the "last few years". I'm just waiting for someone to say it's all Bush's fault...

a. tuzztimonial said...

At the end, you ask, "Is something wrong here."

Did you come up with this list yourself? Are these your invented scenarios? What do they prove if not your own personal theories regarding the changes in time over the last fifty years?
And, just for my own edification, how old are you? You don't have to be specific; just say >50 or <50.

EHT said...

a. tuzztimonial, your first question is answered in the post regarding my source.

While these may be invented scenarios many of the situations can, could, and have happened. These are not necessarily my own personal theories,but I found them interesting based on my own personal knowledge and my years of historical and cultural research over the last few years....and for your own edification I have been alive 46 of the last 51 years.

Thanks for visiting!

Jennie W said...

That's so true it's scary! And it is getting worse each year. I graduated HS in 1998 and my brother in 2001 and the difference were noticeable in stuff like that - the schools are just getting more paranoid and ridiculous! My brother got suspended for playing cards in a girl's room on a school trip (they were at some conference). [As a note it was the fact a boy was a girl's room that was the issue, nothign else.] Although I did tell him he was stupid as they all knew this one guy knew what they were doing, but didn't invite him and he was definitely the tattle-tale type - especially if he was being vindicative. My father made him chop wood all day - my brother never got suspended again!

As a note, I once accidentally took a chainsaw to school in my father's truck (he was cutting wood over the weekend and it never left the truck), but luckily no one ever saw it. But now they probably search vehicles as you come onto school grounds.