In School or On the Streets, Belligerence is Deliberately Destructive ⋆ Politicrossing
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In School or On the Streets, Belligerence is Deliberately Destructive

The impact of belligerence in the classroom or anywhere else in society is real and destructive

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As Minneapolis, Portland, and Seattle experience renewed turmoil propagated by Antifa and other anarchist groups, I am reminded of a time many years earlier. While my daughter was in middle school and high school, and even after she graduated, I volunteered on ‘career day’ to teach in classrooms about being an author and speaker. Other parents in other professions did the same.

Constant Commotion

I eventually gave it up because, invariably, one or two of the minority students — African American — in each class simply could not sit still. These were 14 and 15 year olds, and this happened in 2014, in President Obama’s sixth of eight years in office.

Obviously in writing this article I could avoid citing their minority status. That might be deemed the ‘politically correct’ thing to do, nevertheless I’m duly recounting what led to my departure.

One certainly could engage in a long sociological discussion about their behavior and what prompts it. They would be disruptive, make one-line comments, sit on their desks, make noises, intentionally seek to distract me, and diminish the quality of interaction in the room. At 6’3″, and an athletic 188 pounds, I could have physically intimidated any of the disruptors, but I did not.

Elective Not Mandatory

These students were not forced to attend such sessions; all of these classes for career day were elective. Students signed up in advance for the presenter in the field in which they were interested, or at least feigned interest. In class, most students listened attentively.

Some asked serious questions. Many were thankful for the session. You could see the look of disdain on their faces when others sought to disrupt the class. It was apparent they had witnessed such intentional disruption many times before.

On this last time that I would volunteer in this capacity, and following my last session, I went downstairs to the school office. I told the vice principal and a secretary the reason why I would not return in the future and waste my time. Confidentially, the secretary told me that other presenters had shared the same experience.

The Progression to Belligerence

If I had been a full-time teacher, the unprovoked, continuing belligerence of some students would have changed my perception about the profession and about such students. How might I have reacted if the disruptors were Caucasian? I would, unquestionably, have been equally agitated. This didn’t occur, but it could have.

Was I naive in thinking that I could make my annual presentation and remain unscathed? Perhaps. Maybe it was a matter of time before I ran into such belligerence, but I don’t think so.

What happened was a progression: All students in my earlier years were polite. Then, in subsequent years, some disruptors began to emerge in small ways. Then, disruptors set about to openly flaunt classroom decorum.

At least subconsciously, the disruptors incrementally determined what they could get away with, in a variety of situations, without penalty. Undoubtedly, this was in motion long before I arrived on the scene. I surmise that they were constantly testing the waters – with substitute teachers, instructors, coaches, trainers, and any adult authority figure with whom they felt they might gain leverage.

To No One’s Benefit

Don’t discount the impact of belligerence in the classroom or anywhere else in society. It is real and destructive. Presently, municipal city police officers face constant war zone-like conditions in areas of high belligerence. Such intense, daily experiences have a deleterious effect on their homeostasis, well-being, judgment, and reflexes.

In that regard, U.S. police officers face more conflict than many soldiers in war zones and suffer the same type of traumas such as PTSD. One can’t help but wonder to what their daily, repeat-exposure to domestic war zones leads. Perhaps PTSD like symptoms are at the root unfortunate, fatal encounters in recent times.

Liberal Mayors and city-councils, in Democrat-run municipalities, who do not support their police forces, play a dangerous game with all of the citizens whom they were elected to govern. Squeamish mayors end up helping no one, and indeed, hurting many.

Only in Imagination

The media machine censors news items about those who act aggressively, but only in the ‘progressive’ imagination are police officers invariably at fault, and the array of perpetrators that they encounter are universally law-abiding and upstanding citizens.

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Jeff Davidson is the world's only holder of the title "The Work-Life Balance Expert®" as awarded by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He is the premier thought leader on work-life balance, integration, and harmony. Jeff speaks to organizations that seek to enhance their overall productivity by improving the effectiveness of their people. He is the author of Breathing Space, Simpler Living, Dial it Down, and Everyday Project Management. Visit www.BreathingSpace.com for more information on Jeff's keynote speeches and seminars, including: Managing the Pace with Grace® * Achieving Work-Life Balance™ * Managing Information and Communication Overload®



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Business

Justice, not ‘Social’ Justice, Improves Society

If we ignore existing laws simply in favor of what we want, society will soon break down

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Thomas Jefferson wrote that, “The most sacred of the duties of government is to do equal and impartial justice to all its citizens.” The hallowed duty to fulfill the promise of justice for all remains, or ideally should remain, as the guiding ideal for the people we elect to government.

A friend of mine recently commented that the ‘social’ justice movement in America is alive and well, and that great things have been happening. However, when you put any word in front of the word ‘justice,’ the true meaning of justice is altered. Social justice is some group’s attempt at righting what they consider to be wrong.

I asked my friend for an example of social justice and was told that power lines being installed near poor neighborhoods instead of wealthier neighborhoods was a prime example. I then explained that that was not an issue related to ‘social’ justice but to justice itself.

Express Lanes for Redress

This is not 1860, or 1960. Today, many avenues exist for illuminating any issue of merit. Locally, there are zoning boards in every municipality, city councils usually with members on the left and the right, town hall meetings, public forums, newspapers, local television stations – a variety of entities that can be brought to bear to examine an issue and to forge some type of equitable redress if needed.

To be sure, no form of political government is anywhere near perfect or even equitable, much of the time. Democracy is difficult, but all other forms of government are worse.

In a democracy, or representative republic, such as we have in the U.S., you can’t go off half-cocked and do exactly what you want because you think that a particular law is bad. You have to work to change the law, to change policies, to address inequities within the framework of democracy, and within the bound of the justice system.

A Sanctuary for Whom?

Consider the phenomenon of sanctuary cities. For a sanctuary city to exist, one has to have a mayor, an alderman, city council members,  and other committee members, including those whose were elected as well as as appointed, to believe that what they’re espousing is right, while ignoring what has been passed into law. This ruling class thus usurps that which a majority of citizens rely upon each day.

A sanctuary city, by definition, is a city that is breaking the law. The Left will rationalize that ‘social’ justice requires breaking the law and that not all laws are good laws. True: not all laws are good laws. Laws, nevertheless, were passed as a result of a process in place for tens if not hundreds of years.

If laws routinely discriminate against one segment of the population versus another, then by all means work to change the law. When you insert catchphrases into the mix, such as ‘social’ justice, what that actually means is that you have another viewpoint of an issue. Further, you deem that your view and your actions are more meritorious than whatever came before them.

Vigilantism isn’t Pretty

Years ago, by exhibiting such behavior, you would be called a vigilante. Vigilantes are a self-appointed group who engage in policy enforcement without having legal authority, usually because they deem the legal agencies to be inadequate.

We dwell in a society where the media is distinctly liberal, and even leftist – as we have witnessed with big tech, the big TV networks, nearly all newspapers, and, unfortunately, a variety of government agencies. Thus, those advocating for ‘social’ justice have the wind at their backs. Yet, they violate the rights, and votes, of half the population and perhaps much more.

Welcome to My Two Cents

Any one of us could offer a long list of social issues that we’d like to change. If we decide, willy-nilly, to start ignoring existing laws in favor of what we want, how long will it take before society breaks down completely? Taking the law into your own hands is the essence of what it means to be a vigilante. Vigilante-dominated societies are not healthy. Many of their residents live in constant fear.

Taking the law into your own hands is an ill-advised shortcut to seeking what you want without working through the system, however imperfect the system might be. This country, any country, does not need more vigilantism.

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Education

Texas School District Says Enough is Enough

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Photo by MChe Lee on Unsplash

BREAKING: The Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District in North Texas voted last night to:

1) Ban the teaching of critical race theory. 

2) Wait until students are in the fifth grade to teach them sexual orientation and gender identity. 

3) Ban boys from playing in girls’ sports.

4) Encourage the use of pronouns that align with student’s biological gender and require them to use restrooms and locker rooms that align with their biological gender.

5) Require that library materials be posted online and readily available for review by parents.

6) Not teach The New York Times “1619 Project”.

7) Implement a strict process for reviewing library books, so as to allow To Kill A Mockingbird and disallow Daddy, Papa, and Me and others.

It seems nearly incomprehensible that a school district would have to vote on measures like these. In fact, to many thoughtful Americans, it seems utterly Orwellian. How can truths about gender and the proper use of pronouns suddenly seem controversial rather than commonsensical?

Why does it seem radical to return power to parents and reaffirm biological reality? Or to keep boys from dominating girls in sports? Or to let students read revisionist history and propaganda about their nation on their own time? Why teach something that cannot withstand even the lightest objective criticism? 

Perhaps the school district’s 4-3 vote is a sign that there’s hope, that the pendulum has reached its arc and is beginning to move back toward truth and reality. Maybe the radicals are on the run.

No matter what, kudos to North Texas educators for pushing back against the absurdity and reaffirming responsible education.

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