14 March 2016

Parents, forgive them; for they know not what they do

Our kids are usually a mixed bag, as far as our own emotional balance is concerned. These objects of our unconditional love tend to bring us as much worry and headache as joy, intermittently. And, strange as it may seem, our kids-related anxiety level only grows with years, not abating till our last breath. When the kids leave us to go to their choice of career or education, our active role as parents is somewhat curbed usually, but not our anxiety, which tends to skyrocket.

Of course, the university/college years are expected to be peppered by their youthful shenanigans. And who will not smile at something like this:

A US university has offered counselling to “injured and affected” students who may have been offended by classmates wearing small sombrero hats at a tequila-themed birthday party.
Juvenile, pathetic but still could be considered funny somewhat. It is a bit more difficult to smile at the sad story of two professors that were forced to resign after an attempt to uphold freedom of expression in Yale:
A Yale professor who argued for students’ right to wear culturally insensitive Halloween costumes and triggered outcry on campus has announced her intentions to resign from teaching at the university.
But you know, this could be written off to the youthful zeal and cultural sensitivity. The high schools definitely do a great job of instilling political correctness in our kids.

It is rather more difficult to write off the riots similar to the University of Missouri one. When a raging crowd, incensed by some real or imaginary racial slight (of course, the swastika, scrawled in feces, that was found in a dorm bathroom, has hardly figured in the riot for some reason) and social injustice, has as its main demand removal of the university president, whom it's hard to blame for the said slights and injustice, it becomes really difficult to sympathise with the kids. Especially, when one of the leading figures in the protests (Jonathan Butler) appears to be a son of a very wealthy family.

And thus is escalates, with students becoming de facto rulers in the institutions of high learning. You can argue forever whether it is the egg that came first or the chicken, but you must agree that the situation when the egg decides to teach the chicken is an alarming one. And the eggs, judging by the goings-on at some campuses, pretty malformed to boot, are definitely in the mood to teach.

And then it comes to the boil, in this theater of absurd that is called modern university:
Students at Western Washington University have reached a turning point in their campus’s hxstory. (For one thing, they’re now spelling it with an X—more on that later.) Activists are demanding the creation of a new college dedicated to social justice activism, a student committee to police offensive speech, and culturally segregated living arrangements at the school, which is in Bellingham, up in the very northwest corner of the state.
Read the whole article, dear parents, and weep: this is what you have unleashed on the academic world. These empty-headed embryos of an adult human being know all about their entitlements, about some vague ideals of social justice, about the power of the rabble-rousing mob and how to use it to their advantage. What you forgot to tell them when waving them off on their way to the university is about humility, about the need to study at the feet of their betters, about a long way from a human embryo to an informed and reasonable human being. So forgive them, because it is mainly your fault that you didn't instill in them some basic values before letting them go.

As for me - the whole sad subject somehow always reminds me this picture:

Child Soldiers in Cambodia.