[PLUG-TALK] Web site case in paper today...

Russ Johnson russj at dimstar.net
Mon Sep 8 13:28:53 PDT 2003

Michael C. Robinson wrote:

> On Mon, 2003-09-08 at 09:36, Russ Johnson wrote:
>>I disagree. He didn't like some of his teachers and some of the students 
>>at his school. He wrote about it. This is grounds for counseling? I 
>>don't like some of my co-workers... I've told other people this. Do I 
>>need counseling too? We're not required to like every other human being 
>>we come in contact with.
>>$20,000 is a small settlement considering the kid has been out of public 
>>schools for two years.
> What about tact?  The student shouldn't have 
> been expelled, however, high school is an 
> impressionable time when hopefully people  
> learn that a little bit of tact can go a 
> long ways.  

That's an education issue, not a counseling issue.

> I think there's a culture that says expulsion can 
> change people, I disagree and say it's total 
> failure.

Sorta like the culture that says locking people up changes them?

> I've seen zero tolerance policies used 
> as a way to try and instill certain things in people, 
> however, it's the parent's responsibility to instill 
> values.

Not if you believe school board member Dory(?) from the portland public 
schools... He said (in meeting and on the record) that parents aren't 
qualified to raise kids, and that the schools need to teach kids the 
values they will need.

Zero tolerance is wrong. There are times when everything (even killing) 
is justified. It's not nice to think about, but that's the simple truth.

> My one comment is that everything is NOT a right.

I didn't say it is. My comment about rights was to head off the all to 
common arguement that I'm threatening others rights.

> To say the student could use some counseling is
> not meant as a punishment.  I merely think those
> telling him his rights have been violated may
> be missing an important lesson he needs to learn
> where the comments coming from the student don't 
> seem to offer anything that could be used to 
> overturn the expulsion.  Arrogance here makes 
> it more dangerous for the next student a 
> Beaverton area principal considers expelling.  
> Nobody wants hardened officials.

No, but we do need officials with a little bit of brains. Zero tolerance 
removes the brain factor. When you take away mitigating circumstances, 
then we don't need officials any more. Computers can choose between 0/1, 
and that's all we need in this situation.

In this case, I don't believe the school had jurisdiction. That would be 
like my place of employment firing me for something I did off work. I 
have written op-ed pieces about places I've worked in the past. Not 
necessarily the people, but enough of the situation that it was obvious 
who and what I'm talking about.

 From what I understand, this kid wasn't  calling for the death of 
anyone or even harming anyone. He was making fun of them. Kids do that. 
Hell, adults do it...

> Lack of respect for other people is arguably 
> a massive problem in our modern culture.

I agree. However, this kid deserves to have his right to have and 
express his opinions (even publically) as much as anyone else. If he 
violated any laws, then there might be something for the school to do, 
since it did involve teachers at that school.

> As 
> much as this person deserves sympathy, just 
> how hard can we come down on the schools?

As hard as need be? They are not all powerful, and they seem to think 
they are. I understand that they have a hard job to do, but at the same 
time, they need to know their own limits too.

> I will say the plastic gun-like button 
> incident is ridiculous, then again, 
> professional assassins use plastic weaponry 
> because it is mostly invisible to common 
> detection methods.

A gun that's less than the size of a silver dollar?

Russ Johnson
Stargate Online
Home:	http://www.dimstar.net
LDP:	http://ldp.dimstar.net

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