Big Les

My rhetoric is my rampart!

    Blind Support (part 2)

    November 18th, 2022

    I haven’t spoken much with my friend since Youngkin’s model policy made it through the Town Hall process required by law. We did chat briefly over a few drinks after I read the policy, and that’s when it hit me. She just didn’t care because she didn’t think it affected her and her family. She hadn’t even read the policy but assured me her son had. In hindsight, I realize she had no opinion because she couldn’t. She was entirely uninformed apart from what her son had told her, yet her son had her full support. Her son’s civic action in helping to organize a “blackout” protest made her so proud, she hadn’t even looked into the very thing being protested, and she couldn’t understand why I even cared since I have no children.She even said, “I don’t give a shit!”

    I ain’t no shrink or nuthin’, but I am a fan of psychology. Most people who don’t care actually don’t know how to care. They were never taught, and they grew up learning only how to vent their problems without ever learning how to work through them. Consequently, they grow up with limited coping skills, and they go through life venting more than coping. Sometimes these folks wind up ignoring problems altogether because they can’t make sense of things or simply don’t know what to do. In the case of my friend, I don’t think she ever saw a problem until I pointed it out. Maybe she then realized she had missed something and had not offered advice. I inferred from her tone that she was frustrated and confused, so I didn’t press the matter but decided to leave it sit and chew on it a bit.

    It bothered me though. How could I not care, and why didn’t she care? I’ve been ranting about the problems with gender ideology for some time now, but I never actually came in contact with someone who could be harmed by it. This was the first time it hit home. No, I don’t have any kids, but I remember when her son was born, and I know she and I think alike in many ways. I thought for sure we would see eye to eye, but she was so proud of her son for getting involved. Like so many parents, she thought her kid was really smart and trusted him unconditionally.

    At the risk of oversimplifying parenting, this can lead to myriad problems which quite often do not manifest until it’s too late. Raising children is complex, and the effort required of parents is immeasurable. As such, quite a bit of attention must be paid to their development. Parents must guide their children in forming judgments. In failing to do so, kids can learn how to justify whatever they want. Nevertheless, even with sound guidance kids can be manipulative. They are clever, and the more intelligent ones moreso. 

    Had my friend been duped? I don’t think her son deceived her, but he had been given a pass by her to act on a poorly formed judgment. He had reasoned wrongly to oppose a policy that was written to give parents more say-so in the education of their children. As his parent, she had inadvertently opted out of being involved in her son’s education not only at school but also at home and ultimately in life. Parents are the primary educators of their children, and even though they typically relegate academic education to school systems, they must remain involved.

    This may have been a rude awakening for her. In one sense she may have been confronted with the possibility that the issues within gender ideology were perhaps more significant than she cared to think about. On the other hand, she may have realized that in overlooking the issue’s significance, it may negatively impact her son and reveal a deficiency in her parenting. This was not my intent. I know she loves her son and wants the best for him. I only wish she cared enough to get involved herself.

    The flaws in gender ideology transcend the intellectual and actually do more harm than good. My intent in writing this is to convey a sense of urgency and awareness for parents to get more involved with the education of their children. Even those parents that think their kids are shielded because they send them to private schools should be vigilant and keep in mind that public schools outnumber private. When the public school kids grow up they become the majority, and what they’ve learned may become a reality.

    Blind Support (part 1)

    September 30th, 2022

    Written Prior to My Reading Policy

    A friend of mine recently told me that her son got sent to the principal’s office for organizing a walk-out protest against Virginia governor Glen Youngkin’s “policy” to require teachers to inform parents of their children’s sexual leanings (as it were). Her son’s concern was that he knew some kids that might suffer abuse if their families found out they were gay. I kept my mouth shut and took it all in as she continued with her story. She told me she suggested to him, as an alternative, a silent protest wherein the students would say nothing in all their classes, particularly when being addressed by their teachers. I was perplexed at her response, but I wanted to give myself some time to digest and confirm this report because I had heard nothing of it (at the time of this writing). In all fairness, I’m going off memory, so I apologize if I misquoted her, but I do pay close attention to what folks say. Now that I’ve had a day or so to look into it and mull over her account, I’ll unpack.

    I put the word policy in quotes because it doesn’t exist. As it turns out, there is no plan to require teachers to do the thing that her son would protest. From my brief research, this comes from an interview in which the governor reportedly expressed support for a policy that would allow for teachers to inform parents. Notice the change in language from require to allow. Some school districts (at the time of this writing) prohibit teachers from informing parents that their children are gay claiming that doing so would violate the child’s privacy and subject them to discrimination.

    Her son’s concern was highly speculative and avoided engaging with the underlying issue. This is a classic example of a slippery slope argument which puts forth that B is bound to follow if A happens; therefore, A should not happen. This immediately shifts the conversation and besmudges the “policy” without discussion. But, since the policy doesn’t exist, this would also be a false dilemma. Normally, I would stop at the false dilemma and politely demand some sort of confirmation that the problem actually exists, but this whole thing is indicative of a problem pervading our culture: lack of critical thinking.

    At times we respond to a proposed solution without examining the purported problem. This is what perplexed me with my friend’s response to organize a silent protest. Her son was attempting to coordinate some kind of protest as a conscientious response (solution) to the policy (problem), but she didn’t seem to bother to ask about the policy or how he had come across this information. If there were a policy, certainly it would be available for review by performing a simple Google search. It seems she simply went along with the idea of protesting. Many do this to show support or demonstrate trust or (worse) because they don’t care.

    To Be Continued…

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