I got a FB post today that rattled my cage like few others. In all truth, I don’t exactly thrill over what someone had for lunch, but it’s just conversation, right? It’s not all going to be world peace or curing nasty diseases. But the post that busted me is about a high school kid who got expelled and lost a college scholarship over posting what was apparently a long string of racist, sexist trash on Twitter. In the first place, the whole concept of Twitter stops me dead. A hundred and forty characters? I say Good Morning and I’m over quota. Forget it. What makes me sick, however, is that no one ever got to the kid and politely pointed out to him that he’s an idiot. Right – so he’s a teener and idiocy’s part of the game. Hatred’s not. Discrimination’s not. When you shout out racist and hateful trash to the entire world on some electronic megaphone, you’re in the big leagues with the other uglies. No one belongs there; it’s certainly no place for potential university students. A lot of people will squall about withdrawing a scholarship as excessive. Maybe so. If you believe that, maybe you’re the one to have him live with you while you wean him off his present menu. That bears thinking about; we all want kids like that straightened out. We just don’t want to be too close to them while it’s happening. So think about his social environment. If no one squared him away, it’s inescapable that many – if not most – of the people around him not only obviously tolerated his behavior, but agreed with it. He didn’t live in a vacuum and he was blatant in his contempt for the people he maligned. There will be those who defend him and go on about how he’s a product of a bad environment. I don’t see how anyone can argue with that. What troubles me more is that quite likely an even larger number are likely to declare him the victim in this situation. I can argue with that. If anything, he’s his own victim. Hatred and discrimination are choices. Personally, I hope the kid gets a chance to prove he’s not a simple hater. I’m not convinced he wants it.
Not often I agree with anybody (I too am very old), but you are obviously a man of discernment. Also, we have met through your son, Con. We are neighbours. I intend to pursue your scratchings more thoroughly. BTW, I also scratch, though not as eloquently. Try mine at http://boggyspub.blogspot.com
But then all writers crave an audience.
I hope our paths cross again in person. In the meantime I shall wend my way through your blog and novel(s)
Bill Critch at Burien Town Square. #422
I agree Don. Nicely put. So far we are very pleased with how our grandchildren are being raised. Good kids.
One of the candidates for prez does this. Maybe the kid thought he was being like the candidate, being ‘cool’???