May 11, 2013

"A Brooklyn teacher got so fed up with a notorious 8-year-old class bully that she taught him a lesson in street justice..."

"... having him stand in front of the class while his latest bullying victim 'hit him back' for all the abuse. The kid clocked his tormenter — and the bully cried like a baby. 'Well, that’s what you get,'the teacher told the wild child, according to Department of Education documents."

97 comments:

cubanbob said...

Instead of a fine the teacher deserves a ten grand bonus.

wyo sis said...

She should come and teach out West where frontier justice is still effective and appreciated.

Icepick said...

That's much more effective if one of the victims just turns around and slugs the bully in line one day. This way the former victim is now just a stooge of the teacher.

Gahrie said...

Do we really want to adopt street culture in our classrooms?

Quaestor said...

Do we really want to adopt street culture in our classrooms?

Someone's been sleeping through the 21th century.

Jay said...

Public schools are really focused on learning and student achievement, aren't they?

TMink said...

Scratch a bully and you find a coward.

Trey

Pogo said...

Non-white, so the rules vary.

I have to consult my guidebook to determine appropriateness.

bagoh20 said...

Just another problem made worse by lawyers. Bullies, like most problems between people have age old solutions that were quick and effective. There just wasn't any money in it. Today, there is no measure of justice you can participate in without a guaranteed lawsuit, leaving you the victim of a bully as well.

Jonathan Card said...

When did my mother start teaching in Brooklyn?

Carl said...

What no one denies about "street justice" is that it is effective. The usual complaint is only that it is sometimes misguided -- the undeserving get it or the deserving don't -- or crudely disproportionate.

The whole advantage of courtroom justice is supposed to be, slow and unwieldy and difficult to understand as it may be, it is precisedly targeted and measured out to the judicious millimeter.

A question those who participate in courtroom justice should routinely ask themselves is: what would happen if people stop believing that what we do is precisely targeted and perfectly calibrated?

Bender said...

And what happens when the bully teacher isn't there to hold the bully kid's arms behind him so that the weak kid can hit him?

Just exactly what was taught with resentment building up in the bully kid for being humiliated?

You want to teach? Teach the weak kid to stand up for himself, rather than crying and getting someone bigger to help him fight his battles.

Gahrie said...

The usual complaint is only that it is sometimes misguided -- the undeserving get it or the deserving don't -- or crudely disproportionate

My argument is that it is barbarism. Civilization is constantly in a battle against barbarism. In some times and places it is actual combat, in others the warfare takes other forms. But make no mistake, the barbarians see our civilization as an easy target, and fully intend to loot and pillage it.

The factor that makes this struggle most difficult is that each generation is born as barbarians and must be taught civilization. Somewhere along the way we have stopped civilizing our youth....

edutcher said...

I do have to agree with the last thing Bender said, but Heaven (or Uncle Saul) forbid we turn victims into fighters.

That's un-Chicago.

But, yeah. I love her, too.

Bender said...

And what lesson did the teacher learn?

That just as there was someone bigger and with more power than the bully kid, there was someone bigger and with more power than her to punch her with a $10,000 loss of pay.

What goes around comes around. That is, by her standard, justice.

phx said...

Another case where the law got broke and yet justice somehow was served.

It's like a scene in the Billy Jack movie. "Ain't you gonna press charges, Sheriff?"

"Where would I start?"

Big Mike said...

It's "the Code." Just ask Ta-Nehisi Coates.

Respect multiculturalism!

bagoh20 said...

"What goes around comes around. That is, by her standard, justice."

The difference is that her "bullying" didn't punish an innocent or just person. The only person who deserved any punishment was the bully. An adult, or better a bigger kid, is ideal and creates the least overall negative effect.

I bullied a kid once. His older sister kicked my ass, and in a matter of minutes with no help from any body else, I was cured for life. No innocent parties were put though a hell of paperwork or hearings or other bureaucratic bullshit, and nobody felt obligated to take my side or make it fair. All that crap just adds up to more victims and less solution.

Matt said...

"You want to teach? Teach the weak kid to stand up for himself, rather than crying and getting someone bigger to help him fight his battles."

I think what Bender is saying is that it is time for a montage!

wyo sis said...

it's barbarism.

Barbarians only understand strength and retaliation.
To get their attention you have to hit them first and hardest.

Then after you have their attention you can reason with them.

After enough barbarians are subdued then the next generation can be a little more subtle.

Allowing barbarians to continue unchecked will never get you to the second generation.

James said...

One of my sisters is an ESL (French) high school teacher in NYC and the stories she tells...

I initially assumed the teacher was from the Caribbean (that type of immediate justice is typical in Caribbean schools) but apparently she's Ghanaian. The commonality isn't really surprising considering the slave routes from West Africa to the West Indies.

Gahrie said...

In this case, the teacher was the barbarian. In a civil society, the bully would have received punishment, instead of being the victim of vengeance.

Chip S. said...

"Wild child", eh?

The kid's lucky he didn't get 400 blows.

David said...

Gahrie said...
"In this case, the teacher was the barbarian. In a civil society, the bully would have received punishment, instead of being the victim of vengeance."

Unfortunately a good part of our culture dropped out of civil society some time ago. And I'm not trying to talk about the bullies. In a civil society there would be effective punishment of the bully (including banishment for the incorrigible). That's not happening in too many places, as this teacher well knew.

David said...

What lesson did the "notorious bully" learn, Gathrie?

He learned that those who stand up for his victims will be disciplined.

He already knew that few people would stand up for the victims. That's how he was able to become notorious.

Nice world you live in. Too bad not everyone can join up.

Synova said...

"You want to teach? Teach the weak kid to stand up for himself, rather than crying and getting someone bigger to help him fight his battles."

Wow.

And what if the weak kid is... weak. Or the little girl is a little girl? What if standing up to the bully, physically, just means you get smeared into the floor?

There is a whole lot of inequities in the world that simply *are* and the idea that someone who is weak or small (or female) needs to be taught to stand up for themselves?

I'm disgusted by this. I truly am. It's disgusting.

We should stand up for each other. But we can't, now. Kids in school can't, now. Because you're never supposed to beat up another kid and no one among the teachers or administrators cares at all who was the victim and who wasn't or who was defending someone else and who wasn't.

And yeah... what this bully learned, and what ever single kid in that class learned, was that they were on their own, the bullies would be protected, and anyone who dared to stand up for the weak would be punished.

Welcome to the world you made.

Synova said...

As for the stronger, bigger, more powerful teacher "bullying" the littler, weaker, 8 year old thug... and that somehow this teaches that the strong get to abuse the weak...

What a repugnant, thoughtless, conclusion that recognizes no difference at all between protection and righteousness and predation and abuse.

Hagar said...

There were a few "incidents" in school as I grew up, but we settled them right there.
We did not tattle on the teachers, and they did not tattle on us.

Christy said...

The local news has been following the suicide of a bullied pre-teen. While my heart breaks, I wonder if our approach to bullies (talk to a grown up) is making things worse for kids and society.

Æthelflæd said...

This quote is overused, but it is certainly applicable here:

"We sleep peaceably in our beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on our behalf."

-George Orwell

You can't have civilization without protecting the weaker brethren. Our schools have stopped protecting the weaker kids with a "zero tolerance" policy towards any violence, even if it is self-protection. What this teacher did may not have been good for her career, but I salute her.

tim maguire said...

The bully is 8 years old. If the teacher can't think of a better way to handle an unruly child, then she shouldn't be teaching.

Æthelflæd said...

What remedy do you suggest, Tim? More time outs?

Synova said...

Tim, what was she supposed to do?

How was she supposed to "handle" the kid that had another kid on the floor and was beating on him?

Send him to the office? Oh wait... she's got to send them BOTH to the office because they BOTH were fighting.

Next time the teacher's back is turned the victim gets slugged... again.

Gahrie said...

What lesson did the "notorious bully" learn, Gathrie?

He learned that those who stand up for his victims will be disciplined.


If so, that was the wrong lesson. What he should have learned is that two wrongs don't make a right, and what the teacher did was worse (because of her position of authority) than what he did.

He already knew that few people would stand up for the victims. That's how he was able to become notorious

I agree with you that for various reason bullies are not punished often or severe enough in our society. But I would argue that rejecting civil society for barbaric street culture is not the correct answer.

Synova said...

Actually, what should happen when someone is a bully and picks on other kids is... the school should determine who was at fault, if at all possible. And if someone is habitually picking on other students they should be expelled, forever.

But we can't expel those kids because it's against the law. And we can't determine who is the aggressor and who is the victim because no one involved in public schooling has the balls to do it.

Gahrie said...

The bully is 8 years old. If the teacher can't think of a better way to handle an unruly child, then she shouldn't be teaching.

Far too simplistic. I happen to believe that corporal punishment ( a spanking) would be the most appropriate response, but teachers aren't allowed to do that.

The truth is that teachers actually have very few options for discipline these days, and very little support from parents and administration.

cassandra lite said...

I'd make her superintendent of schools.

Gahrie said...

And we can't determine who is the aggressor and who is the victim because no one involved in public schooling has the balls to do it.

Actually, in most places that are not allowed to make such a determination because of school board policies. The school boards write such policies at the advice of lawyers in an attempt to prevent lawsuits.

Bender said...

So what did this teacher teach the weak kid to do when someone bigger was not around? How did she prepare him for that? Because 99.9 percent of the time in life, there is not going to be anyone bigger, anyone with authority, around to hold the bully down so that the weak kid can get his own punches in.

Look -- I myself am physically smaller than average. But I'll be damned if I'm going to be pushed around by some punk, no matter how much bigger. It's a matter of projecting an attitude, which even the biggest of bullies will back away from. And if they don't, then you just keep getting back up and punching back, and they will respect you.

But get someone else to fight your battles for you, then all you've done is prove to them what a pussy you are.

Synova said...

More or less my point, Gahrie.

Anything reasonable and right is disallowed... including giving the victim a swing at the bully.

And every normal method of dealing with nasty people is also disallowed to students because the victims of bullying in school can't do what you or I can do, which is usually to simply avoid toxic people. Even in karate the instructor is all... you only fight if you *can't* leave. And the kids can't leave.

And the lesson learned is that standing up for yourself, or anyone standing up for you, means you or they are punished for it.

Synova said...

Right Bender....

That's why I bought a gun.

Gahrie said...

But get someone else to fight your battles for you

The objective, as I see it, is to produce a society in which you don't have to fight such battles, or at least greatly minimizes them.

bagoh20 said...

Couldn't the bullied kid simply claim that the bully pointed his finger like a gun and said "bang", or called him a queer, or some other expellable offence.

You need to use the system. There is a lot of power there for victims, real or not.

Bender said...

That's why I bought a gun

I never said you couldn't use an equalizer.

Gahrie said...

And the lesson learned is that standing up for yourself, or anyone standing up for you, means you or they are punished for it.

The answer to this is to demand that our school boards and school administrators restore a system of justice ( which requires making judgements) to school discipline, not to sanction street justice.

Synova said...

But kids in school *can't* use an equalizer and you absolutely wouldn't want them to.

But for the rest of it... I think it's damaging to insist that we do not have an obligation to protect the weak. What are we if we don't do that?

Æthelflæd said...

Gahrie said...

"Far too simplistic. I happen to believe that corporal punishment ( a spanking) would be the most appropriate response, but teachers aren't allowed to do that.

The truth is that teachers actually have very few options for discipline these days, and very little support from parents and administration."

Completely agree with you here. Unfortunately, that is not the victim's or the teacher's current situation, is it? There is NO RECOURSE under the current system. So, once again, I commend the teacher for thinking more of the kids than of her own career.

Bender said...

The objective, as I see it, is to produce a society in which you don't have to fight such battles, or at least greatly minimizes them

When the objective is utopia, then the result is always hell instead.

We should aspire to some level of social harmony, some level of civilization, but in life, we will always have battles, battles of all sorts, whether openly and directly as in physical fights, or indirectly, through psychological or economic or social or legal means. Usually, in school, the biggest bully is the person with authority, the teacher or administrator who likes to throw his or her weight around.

Conflict is part of fallen human nature. Especially when we are talking about eight-year-old kids there is a lot of getting into scraps and getting into power struggles. Just look at a bunch of puppies and how they act -- there are a couple who try to be the dominate ones. It is part of growing up. It is boys being boys. It is one boy being a bully, someone standing up to him and giving him a bloody nose, and then the "bully" goes on to be a good and decent guy.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

8 years old is awfully young for bullying. It tends to kick in (no puns intended there) around middle school. And then peter out as the bullies get a little more mature, or get expelled. From the point of view of the bullied, either one will do, honestly.

Bender said...

I think it's damaging to insist that we do not have an obligation to protect the weak

Except I NEVER SAID THAT.

This teacher did not merely "protect the weak." She used her position of authority to effectively grab one kid, hold his arms back, and invite the other one to punch away. That's not protecting the weak, that's merely being a bigger bully.

30yearProf said...

As a military brat, I went to 12 schools before college. I was a short, pudgy nerd. So in every grade after 4th, I had to fight (not necessarily win) someone to be left alone.

As the police show us every minute, there IS a place for controlled violence in every social setting.

bagoh20 said...

"The objective, as I see it, is to produce a society in which you don't have to fight such battles, or at least greatly minimizes them."

This is the tilting at windmills that has led to the mess of zero tolerance crap that only changes the source of the violence to a bureaucratic system that expels and punishes kids for being normal, and does far more damage than minor violence ever did. There are things far worse than a kid getting a black eye. For instance, a kid never getting a black eye, or a kid being exiled and ostracized from his peers for the cowardice and fecklessness of adults.

We are being forced to accept the standards of the least capable, the least vigorous, the least courageous in favor of infantilization and victim-hood where weak adults feel less threatened. Of course we pursue justice, but by strengthening the weaker, not hamstringing the stronger.

Life will never be safe for the meek, for even if everyone was meek, some would still use the system to bully others, as we see everywhere today.

Æthelflæd said...

No, Bender, it is using legitimate authority in a creative and helpful way.

My younger son, who is small for his age, and an aggressive little banty rooster, was being bullied by three older boys who would pin him down. I had to get his big brother involved. It was nice that that was an option.

Me against the world doesn't always work in a closed environment like a school. The authorities are supposed to make it tolerable, and not like a kill-or-be-killed prison.

Matt said...

My fourth grade son has been having problems with a classmate this year. The kid in question is a "special needs" kid who is generally shunned by his classmates. My son saw this and tried to make friends with him. For a time, they were friends but the kid ended up being a jerk and a bully. The bully brags about how he can do whatever he wants because he is a "special needs" student.

My son's teacher is oblivious; although, as of last week she is on medical leave for the rest of the year and the new teacher seems more on the ball.

My wife has talked to the school. (She's a better diplomat than I am when it comes to these things.) I have told my son that if he feels the need to defend himself, I will back him up 100%.

The only logical next step if things don't get better is for me to give the school holy hell (and I will) AND press criminal charges against the kid.

bagoh20 said...

It's the same as with gun-free zones. The delusion is that making rules that make everyone weak and helpless somehow makes them safer. We need to encourage strength, bravery, and righteousness, not just equality and then simply hope righteousness will grow in the vacuum. The bully does his work in the absence of strong good people plain and simple. Justice-blind rules are not a substitute.

30yearProf said...

Michelle wrote: "It tends to kick in (no puns intended there) around middle school. And then peter out as the bullies get a little more mature, or get expelled. From the point of view of the bullied, either one will do, honestly."

Horse puckky, Michelle. You've never been a bullying victim have you? "Come children let's all be nice" simply doesn't work on some people.

Æthelflæd said...

bagoh20 said...

"This is the tilting at windmills that has led to the mess of zero tolerance crap that only changes the source of the violence to a bureaucratic system that expels and punishes kids for being normal, and does far more damage than minor violence ever did. There are things far worse than a kid getting a black eye."

Absolutely. Civilization is constantly one step away from chaos. You either have violence in self-defense and in the defense of the weak, or you have unrestrained violence by the "strong horse", and descend into madness as a nation.

Gahrie said...

We are being forced to accept the standards of the least capable, the least vigorous, the least courageous in favor of infantilization and victim-hood where weak adults feel less threatened. Of course we pursue justice, but by strengthening the weaker, not hamstringing the stronger.

You argue for a state of nature, in which the virtue of strength provides you an advantage over the weak. Well, there is much of it to be found in human history, most of it pretty unpleasant for all involved except for those in charge.

I argue for civilization in which the strong protect the weak through laws and justice, a civil society. In my opinion history has proven that that results in the highest standard of living for the greatest number of people.

Michael said...

Do we really want to adopt street culture in our classrooms?


Apparently, yes. In the old days before they became pussified, boys hit each other. With the no hitting culture came guns. Lefties are increasingly smug as they become Increasingly incomprehensible. Now, of course, boys are taught to look to the authorities to help them.

Gahrie said...

Apparently, yes. In the old days before they became pussified, boys hit each other. ... Now, of course, boys are taught to look to the authorities to help them.

Nowhere have I said that kids shouldn't defend themselves. I think they should. In fact I have been argueing that they should be allowed to defend themselves without getting into trouble.

If the teacher had taken one of the kids aside, and said, "Next time, punch him back, you have to defend yourself from bullies", I would have been totally supportive. I would suggest that the school suspend or expel the bully, and do nothing to the other kid or teacher.

Gahrie said...

Just to be clear, I would also have supported the teacher if she had spanked the bully.

Bender said...

Now, it is quite possible that it is really the "weaker" and smaller kid who was the aggressor here, the real bully. Physicality is only one way to bully.

For all we know, the smaller kid has been emotionally tormenting the bigger kid all along and finally the bigger one had had enough.

After all, that is the preferred way for girls to bully. To "hit" under the belt, to hit where it can't be seen, but where it still stings and hurts.

Gahrie said...

For all we know, the smaller kid has been emotionally tormenting the bigger kid all along and finally the bigger one had had enough.

Fair enough. Now we are back to the subject of judgement, which school administrators are scared, and often forbidden, to exercise.

bagoh20 said...

"You argue for a state of nature, in which the virtue of strength provides you an advantage over the weak."

You can pretend that's not the nature of the universe, but you will not escape it.

"I argue for civilization in which the strong protect the weak through laws and justice, a civil society.".

And so we will pretend that official adjudication at ever human interface makes a better human condition. That nothing can be right unless a law, a lawyer, a bureaucrat and government authority is there to make it so at every possible interaction.

I don't think we are seeing that produce good results. Nobody is talking about rule of the jungle, but rather rule of the village, where we look out for each other, not each other's lawyer.

Michael said...

Bender raises an interesting point. In the no hit culture of the pussified 21st century the real bully could very well be the person who incited someone to hit in retaliation. The bully being generally convinced that he would not get hit for taunting, teasing, and badgering. It could well be another unintended consequence of the war on boys, the campaign to turn them into girls.

Æthelflæd said...

"Nowhere have I said that kids shouldn't defend themselves. I think they should. In fact I have been argueing that they should be allowed to defend themselves without getting into trouble.

If the teacher had taken one of the kids aside, and said, "Next time, punch him back, you have to defend yourself from bullies", I would have been totally supportive. I would suggest that the school suspend or expel the bully, and do nothing to the other kid or teacher."

Most of us probably agree with you here. That is not going to happen under the current policies. So we are back again to what actually happened. Good on her for trying to do SOMETHING to teach the bully a lesson, and help the victim. The victim wasn't going to be helped by pontificating on how things should be, and used to be. "Wait ten years kid, and we'll have this system reformed, by golly."

Æthelflæd said...

bagoh20 said: "Nobody is talking about rule of the jungle, but rather rule of the village, where we look out for each other, not each other's lawyer."

Perfectly put, sir.

Gahrie said...

And so we will pretend that official adjudication at ever human interface makes a better human condition.

Because it does. Civil society is far from perfect, and downright distasteful sometimes, but produces a far higher standard of living for more people than any alternative.

I would argue that the sole difference between the properous United States, and the poverty striken Mexico is precisely that difference. Mexico has a village society, and the United staes a civil one.

Jeff Teal said...

Ifind Gahrie's position on all this very utopian.In all my years in school I was bullied pretty much everywhere.(I was a smallish nerdy four-eyed teachers pet). The bullying at any location would not stop until I fought back.Not once but whenever the bullying began.It didn't end until I got to high school and joined the wrestling and football teams.In short when I transitioned to sheepdog.
Isalute that teacher.

Jeff Teal said...

And yes everytime I attempted to avail myself of the totally ineffectice justice of the principal and school system

Gahrie said...

Ifind Gahrie's position on all this very utopian

How? I've said she should have told the kid to defend himself. I've said the teacher should have punished the bully, even with a spanking. I've said the victim should be allowed to defend himself without punishment.

I merely object to the teacher not only endorsing, but participating in with authority, vengeance.

Æthelflæd said...

"official adjudication at ever human interface"

is Gahrie's dream society. Gotcha.

Gahrie said...

"official adjudication at ever human interface"

is Gahrie's dream society. Gotcha.


I would argue the definition, but accepting it for purposes of argument, what would you prefer? Cite an example in history.

I personally am willing to consider the retun of formal dueling, but I acknowledge there are some serious drawbacks.

Æthelflæd said...

You are contradicting yourself when you allow for self-defense. "Official adjudication at every turn" means a kid can't stand up for himself, he must get an official involved. A brother can't deal with some guy playing unwanted grab-ass with hi sister, etc.

Levi Starks said...

Sure and Swift.

AprilApple said...

I know it's not PC or approved by libs, but - awesome.

Gahrie said...

You are contradicting yourself when you allow for self-defense. "Official adjudication at every turn" means a kid can't stand up for himself, he must get an official involved.

Not true. One of the reasons School discipline doesn't work is because it doesn't allow for self defense. The reason it doesn't is that that then forces the administrator to make a judgement, and then be prepared to defend it. It's easier just to suspend both kids.


A brother can't deal with some guy playing unwanted grab-ass with hi sister, etc.

That depends. If the level of action by the brother was appropriate, we're back to judgement.

Gahrie said...

In the land of an eye for an eye, everyone ends up blind.

The Godfather said...

Here we have a teacher who's been standing at the barricades for more than a decade, trying to teach children in an environment dominated by junior thugs and barbarians, and WE are second-guessing whether her way of dealing with this particular situation was optimal. Not just us commentators, but also the school administrators who've escaped to their offices and have to deal with bullying only from the politicians and the newsies.

You know who really suffers from the administration's punishment of this teacher? Not the teacher. Not even the kid who was bullied. The ones who suffer are all the poor, mostly minority, kids who won't be able to get a decent education, because of the environment of bullying and inattention and lack of discipline in which they are forced to live. This includes the bully in this story.

jr565 said...

Beat on the brat
beat on the brat
beat on the brat with a baseball bat
oh yeah oh yeah oh oh.

ken in sc said...

I didn't do it but I considered it. There are things that students can do that teachers can't. Some teachers let students be their enforcers. Teachers don't have as much authority as they need. Their imagined authority is a mirage. If a teacher has a real psychopath jerk student, there is nothing he or she can do about it. BTW, if you have two of them, let them duke it out, don't stop them. You can get a little bit of relief while they are both suspended.

Matt said...

Gahrie said...
In the land of an eye for an eye, everyone ends up blind.

5/11/13, 4:53 PM

This is dumb. Just dumb. "Eye for an eye" was a call for moderation in justice instead of vengeance. In other words, if someone blinds you in an eye, then you blind him in one too instead of blinding him, decapitating him and then raping and murdering his family.

Additionally, if it is "eye for an eye" not everyone ends up blind. That only happens if everyone is trying to take each others' eyes out. The victims of eye poking criminals and the criminals are the only ones who end up blind. Really, what that cliche says is "If the punishment fits the crime then everyone ends up in prison".

Seriously, that cliche is just stupid and anyone who uses it should be de-handed!

Skeptical Voter said...

Lil sumbitch had it coming. I would have objected if the teacher had held the kid while the victim sucker punched him, but 8 year old boys are little beasts at best. And while this fight happened in the classroom, the next one will happen on the street. The rest of you all can get all wee wee'd up about what happened here, but it doesn't bother me.

Michael said...

Gahrie wrote: "One of the reasons School discipline doesn't work is because it doesn't allow for self defense"

School "discipline" ended when teachers could not whip the kids or expel them with shame attatched to the expulsion. You will naturaly disagree but you cannot refute it with statistics showing a decline in student misbehavior after corporal punishment was banished. Because the corelation goes in the opposite direction.

Lyle said...

I actually did this as a volunteer cross-country. Wasn't really bullying, but one kid threw water on another kid. I let the kid that got thrown on throw water back at the other guy. Middle school aged kids.

Dante said...

I don't think we are seeing that produce good results.

My interpretation of the "that" is equality of outcomes, a law for every circumstance, a John Edwards for every law, an institution for every unfairness.

I once read that philosophers had conclusively proved (with Predicate Calculus) that it is better to be born into a society that shares all resources equally. I think they missed the human factor that people excel when they are admired and rewarded.

Gahrie said...

School "discipline" ended when teachers could not whip the kids or expel them with shame attatched to the expulsion. You will naturaly disagree but you cannot refute it with statistics showing a decline in student misbehavior after corporal punishment was banished. Because the corelation goes in the opposite direction.

Actually, as a teacher, you're preaching to the choir. I'd bring back both.

Gahrie said...

That only happens if everyone is trying to take each others' eyes out.

Which is what happens when you base society on veneance, rather than justice.

bagoh20 said...

The law of the village is how the United States and most other societies have policed themselves on the micro level almost forever, and thus is not the defining trait of either successful or unsuccessful societies to date. The limitations of communication, travel, and information management prevented it getting much more micromanaged till now.

There were common long term understandings of the rights of family, kinship, autonomy and cooperation that allowed people to police themselves pretty well most of the time. The U.S. like most other nations has developed mostly under that system of common citizen interaction.

Today, we starting to do something new, and the only real analogy is totalitarian regimes where people had to do things in accordance with the central authority or risk top down consequences from even minor personal violations of the rules like telling a friend that the Politburo or it's local party boss sucked, or in our case using the n-word or making anything look like a gun.

I have a lot of personal knowledge of Mexico, the authorities and organized crime there, and I know that private settling of issues is not the difference. Both nations have been that way forever. The difference in Mexico is that the village inhabitants are ruled by a top down cabal of government and organized crime. They are missing legal protections we have, but they are protections of the individual from authorities, not from each other. If we continue the path we are on, we get closer to the Mexican system that has failed for decades.

Our local overlords are not organized crime, but organized do-gooders, who like in Mexico, combine with the government in a pincer move that makes everyone a breaker of the rules one way or another, and a slave to "authorities" having little choice but to try and keep their heads down, not get noticed, and scam the system out of necessity. The difference between the U.S and Mexico is respect for the law, but having more intrusive rules leads to less respect, not more.

Michael said...

The villagers in Mexico are proving Bagoh's point. They are forming armed groups to do what the corrupt police and Federales will not do. Protect their communities. They are inserting some direct justice.

Matt said...

Gahrie said...
That only happens if everyone is trying to take each others' eyes out.

Which is what happens when you base society on veneance, rather than justice.

5/11/13, 7:53 PM


Which is what "eye for an eye" is about. Justice instead of vengeance. You did get the point of what I posted, right? I'm just unsure whether or not you are disagreeing with my response to you.

nightowl said...

And THAT'S what we should be doing to bullies, instead of the PC crap that Hollywood & DC have been pushing. Bullies understand one thing - power.

Gahrie said...

The villagers in Mexico are proving Bagoh's point. They are forming armed groups to do what the corrupt police and Federales will not do. Protect their communities. They are inserting some direct justice.

Which is neccesary because society in Mexico is based on who you know, and how much power you have. If their society was built on laws and justice, they would be protected by society.

Iconochasm said...

I was not bullied enough to make a particularly tragic case, but I think any teacher standing up for me even once would have earned eternal gratitude. Hell, the teacher who just told me to go clean myself up when I showed up for computer club after stomping my most prominent bully did earn eternal gratitude.

And case in point: the bastard never looked at me again, and the remainder of my time in high school was a thousand times more pleasant. Imagine achieving the same goal without trashing my respect for authority.

Dante said...

"You want to teach? Teach the weak kid to stand up for himself, rather than crying and getting someone bigger to help him fight his battles."

I was one of those weak kids.

My teacher in the 6th grade told the class the following:

"Don't let anyone put you down. You've got teeth; you can bite. You've got nails; you can scratch. Someone pushes you, you push them back. Someone hits you, you hit them back.

Didn't work out so well for me, being the smallest in the class, and one of three whites in a sea of blacks.

Æthelflæd said...

Gahrie said...." If their society was built on laws and justice, they would be protected by society."

What exactly do you think society is? If a group of villagers bands together for protection, they are the society. Society is not some kind of top-down invention.

Skipper said...

Not bad, but would have been better to just encourage the victims to stand up to the bully and watch him run like the coward he no doubt is.