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« What's New? A Podcast of: Water Taxing, Weather Falling, Stars Denying, and Wayne's not Dancing. | Main | What's New? Movie Reviews of "Michael Clayton" and "We Own the Night." »

October 12, 2007

A "Moment of Silence" in Illinois School's Rant, and My Weekend Goals.

By: The Dude on the Right
As I head into this coming weekend I have four obvious Entertainment Ave! goals, some "behind the scenes" work for the site, but before I get to that, and I hate to sometimes get political, but here in Illinois I want to know "WHAT THE HELL IS OUR LEGISLATURE DOING WASTING THEIR TIME WITH A LAW ABOUT A "MOMENT OF SILENCE" TO BE HELD AT ALL ILLINOIS PUBLIC SCHOOLS WHEN THEY CAN'T EVEN GET A BUDGET DONE?"  Yes, that phrase is meant to be in all CAPS because if this were a podcast I would be yelling, and I don't even have kids.  The Chicago Sun-Times has a nice article about it, and reflects that "Rep. Will Davis (D-Homewood), the bill’s chief sponsor, denied he was promoting school prayer but instead said a moment of silence possibly could avert tragedies like the recent school shooting in Cleveland, where a troubled 14-year-old shot two students and two teachers before killing himself. 'Just think if that student had an opportunity maybe to sit and reflect,' Davis said."  How Utopian can you be?  My guess is Asa Coon, the 14-year-old dude who shot four people before killing himself and had a complete history of a messed up life, would have just used his time to contemplate things like "I can enter through the south doors, those guards are lazy and don't give a damn, and I could easily get to Room..."

The other thing is that according to the article "But supporters of the legislation, backed by Concerned Christian Americans and the Illinois Family Institute, said it would help young people come to terms with the everyday stresses in their lives."  How the hell does this not scream "prayer" in school, and how the f$%# does a "moment of silence" help young people come to terms with the everyday stresses in their lives?  Do you people even understand the stresses in their lives?

Look, I went to a public school from K-4, and a Catholic school from 5-12, and whether it was the Pledge of Allegiance or a prayer at the beginning of the day, or just a lull in the action of the day, there is always a moment of silence in a school day, and you don't need to make a law to make that silence.  But had I had a moment of silence at the beginning of the day I'm thinking my thoughts would be things like:

  • In the younger grades: "I really hope we get chocolate-chip cookies today.  Those oatmeal cookies are yucky!"
  • A little older: "Why does Gary keep pulling Mary's pony-tails?  She's always nice to me."
  • In the slightly middle grades: "I thought playing strings meant learning to play guitar, not the violin.  But mom likes me playing violin, so I guess I'll stick with it"... Or... "I really wish I could remember how to spell 'ate' (This is complicated because I did spell "8" correctly, but the teacher was just looking for the word 'ate,' and no one asked for the definition)."
  • A little older: "Maybe Bxxxx will be impressed if I run home really fast."
  • Growing up some more: "Wow, Patty is first chair, and I'd like to be first chair, but she sure is cute.  I guess this violin isn't a bad thing."
  • Somewhere around 7th grade: "We are so much cooler than those 5th graders."
  • High school:  Pretty much every moment of silence would be about a girl I liked and was scared to death to let them know.... except....
  • Every other day, with any kind of test, every thought would be diverted in that moment of silence to "(Insert various expletive here), I knew I should have studied more."

Good luck Illinois schools, explaining to your students why they are having a "moment of silence," but if you don't want any lawsuits you had better just let the kids think about, in those few seconds, or minutes, or hours (hey, the lawmakers didn't say how long the moment of silence should be), what any student at that age might think about.  The scary thing is that the silence might be something as simple as what kind of cookie they might be getting later in the day, but also might be about what is the best way to get into the school with a couple of guns later next week.

Because this blog has gotten too long, on a quick, lighter note my four obvious goals for Entertainment Ave! are reviewing the movies "Michael Clayton" and "We Own the Night," and reviewing new music from Matchbox Twenty (Exile on Mainstream), and Michael Stanley (The Soft Addictions).  Hell, if I really get ambitious there might also be a DVD review of The Collector's Edition of "Knocked Up."  And I didn't even get to some iPhone ranting or my planning on doing some walking.  Maybe next time.

That's it for this one!  I'm The Dude on the Right!!  L8R!!!

Posted by Rightdude at October 12, 2007 6:58 PM


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