Wednesday, October 18, 2006

The further wussification of American children

Breaking: Blue state schools put fear of lawsuits above healthy development of children in their charge:

ATTLEBORO, Mass. -- Tag, you're out! Officials at an elementary school south of Boston have banned kids from playing tag, touch football and any other unsupervised chase game during recess for fear they'll get hurt and hold the school liable.
-- "Not It! Mass. Elementary School Bans Tag", The Washington Post, October 18, 2006

Expatriate curmudgeon Fred Reed had this take on a similar egregiousness a few years back:

There is a totalitarian strain in the female psyche. It isn't evil, at least not in intention. Quite the oppposite -- in intention. Women as a sex want to impose security, stability, and conventionality, at all costs, on everything. They want a tyranny of the safe and comfortable. [...]

When the female drive for security ceases to be a useful brake on male energy, and becomes instead the dominant principle of existence, the effect is stifling. That is what we have. A guy principal, unless gelded, will let girls be girls and boys be boys. A gal principal wants them both to be girls. A man will not try to force girls to play football. A woman will try to force boys to stop playing it.

Because what is instinctive seems reasonable, few women have the foggiest idea what makes men tick. (Or, God knows, vice versa.) Some do. Some women scuba dive, jump out of airplanes, shoot competitively. The average teacheress doesn't. She can't imagine why boys like roughhousing, or hard-played basketball, or guns. When she says tag is too rough, she means that it is too rough for her.

And with an intolerance peculiar to the sex, she believes that anything she can't understand must be reformed.
-- Fred Reed, "Children in shards on the ground"

UPDATE: A passing commenter points out that, although this incident is in Massachusetts, it is a general phenom; not particularly blue-statish or even political in nature. He's right, on further thought. I've seen the same thing happening around here.


  1. I think its hard to say whether the blame is the "blue schools" or the reality of a pitiful legal climate.

    If there have been bodily injury payments made in several cases involving these activities on the basis of negligence from poor supervision, then this was their only choice.

    The school, then, wouldn't be the problem.

    And this is certainly not a blue state issue. The states I work in are all red states, and you can't find one that doesn't have attorneys on the billboards and attorneys on the phone book cover.

    Also....FWIW I think the second quote is way, way off base. Anytime someone generalizes this furiously on the basis of gender or similar, they better source the hell out of it with excellent research.

    I saw none of that.

  2. SI...

    Thanks for the Sitemeter suggestion. I'm definitely going to take that advice and will enjoy knowing whether anyone is out there or not!

    I look forward to following your posts, as I think we may be at somewhat different ends of the poles (me a left-centered Episcopalian), but I always enjoy discussing the issues to better understand all viewpoints.

    Good luck and peace be with you.



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