Tuesday, November 03, 2009

“It wasn’t nobody’s fault."

“It wasn’t nobody’s fault. People shouldn’t be pointing fingers.”

So said a high school senior at the Richmond, California high school where a recent gang-rape of a 15-year-old girl during a homecoming dance was witnessed by many onlookers, some of whom joined in the rape, some of whom took photos with their cell phones, but none of whom used those cell phones to call the police.

Of course, she's right: it wasn't nobody's fault. It was somebody's fault. The difference between the two statements -- both grammatically and morally -- seems to have been lost on this high school senior. Of the two errors, the moral one is surely the graver one, but the grammatical error is a symptom of the same forces of cultural disintegration that have contributed to the moral one. There was a day when any third grader could have told you -- in flawless English -- that rape is always somebody's fault. But no more.

I'm sure that if you asked this student about how to use a condom or to recite all the colorful sexual orientations and gender combinations now deemed proper forms of marriage, she would have given text-book answers of the sort that textbooks today tend more and more to provide. But as for what caused World War II, or when our country was founded, or the grammatical rule against the double negative, and countless other matters without which one cannot be considered even semi-educated, she might well draw a blank.

Ideas have consequences, and this story, with all its disturbing moral and pedagogical details, can be seen as the glaring culmination of a half-century of left-liberal anthropological and moral mistakes, each a attempt to remedy problems caused by the one before it. The mindset that has made this possible is not only highly visible, but it is proudly so. For instance, here is a recommendation that appears today on the National Education Association website:

Rules for Radicals
by Saul Alinsky
Vintage; Reissue edition (October 23, 1989)

An inspiration to anyone contemplating action in their community! And to every organizer!

Saul Alinsky, one of president Obama's heroes, was an admitted liar and thug, as even his NEA enthusiasts admit. Here is how that long and laudatory recommendation ends:

Alinsky practiced what he preached. . . . He uses eyes, ears and nose for examples...

"If you have a vast organization, parade it before the enemy, openly show your power."

"If your organization is small, do what Gideon did: conceal the members in the dark but raise a clamor that will make the listener believe that your organization numbers many more that it does."

"If your organization is too tiny even for noise, stink up the place."

Alinsky devised and proved thirteen tactical rules for use against opponents vastly superior in power and wealth.

1. "Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.
2. "Never go outside the experience of your people.
3. "Wherever possible go outside of the experience of the enemy.
4. "Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.
5. "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon.
6. "A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.
7. "A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.
8. "Keep the pressure on.
9. "The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.
10. "Major premise for tactics is development of operations that will maintain constant pressure upon the opposition.
11. "If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into its counterside.
12. "The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.
13. "Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.

"The real action is in the enemy's reaction. The enemy properly goaded and guided in his reaction will be your major strength. Tactics, like life, require that you move with the action."

Alinsky was hated and defamed by powerful enemies, proof that his tactics worked. His simple formula for success...

"Agitate + Aggravate + Educate + Organize"

To this little piece of NEA's educational curriculum will soon be added whatever programs the Obama administration "Safe Schools" Czar, the homosexual activist Kevin Jennings, will determine suitable for students that are no longer learning history, English, science, math or any of the things schools once existed to teach.

Back to the gang-rape at the Richmond high school. According to the San Francisco Chronicle: "teachers and students at least partially blame the attack on the lack of lighting, sturdy fencing or security cameras on the courtyard..."

No doubt the courtyard where the girl was raped before a crowd of onlookers should have been better lighted. The cell phone photos would have turned out clearer no doubt. Since this assessment of the contributing factors came from teachers and students, I suppose we can be grateful that at least this vacuous attempt to explain the attack did not include any grammatical errors, but it is all the more pathetic for having come from adults.

The teachers are hardly the ones primarily responsible for the catastrophe in public education in this country -- that distinction belongs to the parents -- but teachers' unions like the NEA do bear some responsibility, and to prattle on about security cameras and sturdy fencing is just another form of "It wasn't nobody's fault."

The Chronicle reporter observed:


Dennis said...

"An inspiration to anyone contemplating action in their community!"

No wonder students don't know how to use proper grammar, neither does NEA, which apparently doesn't know when to use a singular pronoun rather than a plural. I'm increasingly annoyed at the almost ubiquitous use of "they" or "their" in sentences that require a singular pronoun, especially since it is clearly done out of a PC-motivated effort to avoid the generic singular "he".

Doughlas Remy said...

I'm sure that if you asked this student about how to use a condom or to recite all the colorful sexual orientations and gender combinations now deemed proper forms of marriage, she would have given text-book answers of the sort that textbooks today tend more and more to provide.

Gil, again you are using gratuitous “linkages” to discredit sex education, diversity education, homosexuality, and same-sex marriage. None of these is responsible for the gang rape that occurred in Richmond, CA. Sex education aims to prevent teen pregnancies. Diversity education aims to prevent violence directed against people of color, homosexuals, and others who are perceived as “different” and therefore “other.”

Teen pregnancies and gang violence are problems in the schools and they need to be addressed in the schools and in the wider culture. Why would you want to cut back on programs that seek to address these problems? Do you think that more math or better grammar are the answers?

If these problems are preventing young people from learning, then we need to offer positive and constructive solutions. What solutions are you proposing?

As usual, you are “venting” against all your favorite targets. Since you are such an advocate of education, why not try taking a more “educated” approach to these issues? Consult some experts. Do some reading. Open your mind.