Why are people so afraid of everything, especially thinking!
I am sick of the fact that people are afraid of thinking, for God’s sake folks it is thinking that set’s us apart from the animals, that has given us all of the wonderful things of the world. Yes, it has given us all of the horrible things as well, but folks, thinking gave us toilet paper and I’m sorry, that single invention makes up for a whole hell of a lot of evil. If you don’t think so, do what my granny did when she was growing up and tomorrow morning, when you finish your morning constitutional reach over and grab a page out of magazine crumple it up real good and take care of business. If you aren’t a fan of thinking before that experience trust me, you will be one after.
So what is it that has gotten me so fired up tonight? Well it’s been building my friends, the idiot texting driver who cut me off in traffic, the people at work who can’t see the obvious right in front of their face, the people who ask you the same question over and over again, and even the blind woman who crashed into me today because she was more focused on listening to her audio text than trying to walk straight. Maybe even the girl smoking on a no smoking campus who when it was pointed out that it was a no smoking campus said she didn’t know. Not so bad you think, well she was sitting under a no smoking on campus sign. But none of those took me over the top, no my friends it was an article about an Australian teacher that did it for me.
A teacher in Australia, at the behest of her students assigned an exercise to design a terrorist attack to kill as many innocent people as possible. One student complaint and the proverbial shit hit the fan. Why was this assignment wrong? Now I know, you are all going to scream but that’s horrible making students plan an evil attack, you can’t have young minds thinking about that, why not?
Seriously folks why not? What is wrong with having students carry out a thought exercise? We are not asking them to kill anyone? We are asking them to take on a thought-provoking exercise. An exercise in figuring out what makes human beings vulnerable to attack, what makes our systems likely targets, an exercise in trying to understand how bad people think. What would you rather do, just pretend bad people don’t exist, that these things don’t happen. I know let’s just sit down and imagine Al Qaeda isn’t real, that the Taliban will suddenly recognize women’s rights, that Iran and Israel are going to give each other giant hugs. Bullshit folks, that is not reality.
I’ve heard the argument that when we talk about these types of things we might give the terrorists ideas, are you shitting me? If the terrorists can’t out think a bunch of school students, quite honestly they shouldn’t be feared. The problem in America has become this, we’re so afraid of offending anyone that we are starting to limit our ability and our willingness to think. When this limitation is self-imposed so be it, your choice. But when you start limiting teachers, particularly good, young, inspired to teachers to stretch the boundaries and imaginations of students we are truly and completely fucked! And yes, there’s an F-bomb to help you stretch your imagination if you disagree.
Below is a link to the story that inspired this post: