"There is always a philosophy for lack of courage."—Albert Camus

Friday, January 05, 2007

Hate me, Baby, just leave me alone

A WALK IN THE PARK: I think I was a hate-crime victim. Guy called me a white faggot as I walked through Scoville Park in the gloaming a few weeks ago. I didn't stop. He and his friends were irritated at my NOT stopping. They were desperate for my attention, and I refused it. This was my offense, and so I got victimized. Or was I?

All the guy did was toss out a "white faggot" to an unassuming white fellow trying hard to mind his own business. I had passed them earlier. One was jawing at another, three or four others stood chatting each other up. It's a free country, I thought, go ahead and jaw. I got a few steps past them and heard, "Hi, brother." Who, me? I'm not a brother, I thought -- except to an octogenarian in Gurnee and a septuagenarian in Arlington, VA -- and kept walking.

Again the call: "Brother." I'll bet it's me, I mused. But out of 40-year-old misty memory came a guy yelling, "Hey, you with the collar!" in an open field at 13th and Loomis on a midsummer night in 1966, as helmeted police gathered all down Roosevelt Road. The caller had me cold, I wore the clerical collar. I ignored his cry for attention. Twenty-something and intent on mischief, he had an audience of five or six teen-aged boys, to whom he would have given a lesson in how to deal with the likes of me. No, thanks, I muttered, continuing my way towards the Baptist church at the other end of the project, where do-gooders were gathering ineffectually.

Ignoring this Scoville Park greeting came easy, therefore. But my response rankled, and when I returned 15 minutes later heading the other way, I was accused incontinently of being "a snob" who "wouldn't talk" to them. I was "Sherlock Holmes" in my floppy hat (heh). I was told to commit an indecent if not impossible act. These were truly disgruntled youth. Later on Lake Street, I ran into them again. This time they tossed the N-word at a fellow African American, who was also told to commit an indecent if not impossible act. Now I ask you, were we all victims of hate crimes?

JUMPING TO CONCLUSION: You hear a lot about the school achievement gap, but what about the basketball gap? White kids can't jump, but so what? So they don't suit up or if they do, they warm the bench. That's what happens to the American dream in a dog-eat-dog society. Look, white kids are grossly underrepresented on basketball teams not just in Oak Park and River Forest but nationally. I say enough. Let's train our sights on this gap too. And nuts to this can't-jump stuff, which is transparently racist. It's environment, folks. How many white fathers shoot hoops with their sons?

THROUGH A PRISM DARKLY: The Oak Park District 97 strategic plan draft calls schools "the educational prism through which students realize meaning and purpose in their lives." It says they are "to guarantee that each student achieves optimal intellectual growth while developing socially, emotionally and physically." That's all?

How about the prism through which students realize how to read, write, and do long division, not to mention shut up when teacher is talking and otherwise cooperate for the more or less common good? And who says schools are a prism in the first place? In what respect are they "a transparent optical element with flat, polished surfaces that refract light, the exact angles between whose surfaces depend on the application"? Beats me.

As for "realizing" -- learning? achieving? both, splitting the difference? -- the meaning and purpose in life, oh my. Are these schools or houses of worship? And there's a guarantee of optimal growth? Listen to that carnival barker.

Maybe we would all pay more attention to a plan that made more sense. Or did not belabor the obvious, favoring "a culture of inclusion that respects and promotes diversity." This deftly undercuts the powerful exclusion and uniformity lobby, but it's also grand language impossible to disagree with, reeking of groupthink and lack of imagination, cobbled together in meetings.

The good news is, it's a draft. So hello Baby, give us rewrite.

(From Wednesday Journal of Oak Park & River Forest, 1/3/07)

2 comments:

H. Lewis Smith said...

INTRODUCING THE BENEDICT ARNOLD LIST

United Voices for a Common Cause, Inc. presents its Benedict Arnold list for those Blacks who insist upon publicly using the n-word including Daman Wayans.

No longer is it acceptable to trample upon the memories and honor of those who were tarred and feathered, burnt alive, castrated, hung, boiled alive, sodomized and tortured with hot pokers, disemboweled, unmercifully tortured in countless numbers of other ways, all in the name of the n-word simply because since the victims were considered to be a n***er it was okay to perform such atrocious, despicable acts. And yet as evil and heinous as these acts were there is something that transcends it and that is descendants of these canonized victims taking the word n***er and embracing it with tender loving care and using it endearingly and affectionately among them. How idiotic and moronic can this possibly be?

DAMAN WAYANS and JOHN RIDLEY names have been placed on this list.

To learn more please go to http://www.theunitedvoices.org.

Evanston said...

I wish the mission statement of all schools were: "Our objective is to teach students how to think, not what to think, and to use all disciplinary tools necessary to achieve this objective."
This would get rid of all the social engineering that liberals are infusing in our schools, and grant teachers and administrators the tools to get kids focused on learning. Of course, the proposed mission statement is a pipe dream, and instead we will continue to hear about "prisms" and other nonsense that give the liberals free rein to indoctrinate kids in what to believe and make sure they cannot reach their own conclusions.