The Town Scryer is a mixed bag of humor, socio-political observations and ephemera from the perspective of a eclectic Pagan veteran of the counter-culture.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Welcome to PS 1984


 In the never ending pursuit of security our schools have combined a policy of "zero-tolerance" and less than zero intelligence while ramping-up both active and passive surveillance of our children to a level that we would never tolerate were it inflicted upon our own persons...unless we were about to board an airplane, or entering a Federal building...or at our office...Oh, Never mind.

     "Every day in communities across the United States, children and adolescents spend the majority of their waking hours in schools that increasingly have come to resemble places of detention more than places of learning."

     So reads a passage from the opening pages of Lockdown High, a new book by the San Francisco-based journalist Annette Fuentes. Subtitled "When the schoolhouse becomes the jailhouse", it details a process that began with the Colombine shootings in 1999, if not even further back with the inception of the "Zero-tolerance" drug policies of the eighties. The text cites cases that are mind-boggling: a high-flying student from Arizona strip-searched because ibuprofen was not allowed under her school rules; the school in Texas where teachers can carry concealed handguns; and, most amazingly of all, the Philadelphia school that gave its pupils laptops equipped with a secret feature allowing them to be spied on outside classroom hours.

    This process of institutionalizing our children and coming down hard on them for even the slightest infraction crushes individuality, stifles any vestige of creativity or original thought and prepares them for a life in which they will never ever question authority and will accept a life without any rights or privacy as a continuation of the norm. When they at last don the robe and tasseled mortarboard they will take the last step onto the dreary road that we, in our blind fear, have made ready for them. 

     They will hardly notice the chains.


      Source: The Guardian

     Be seeing you.


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