". . . But the past does not exist independently from the present. Indeed, the past is only past because there is a present, just as I can point to something over there only because I am here. But nothing is inherently over there or here. In that sense, the past has no content. The past -- or more accurately, pastness -- is a position. Thus, in no way can we identify the past as past." p. 15

". . . But we may want to keep in mind that deeds and words are not as distinguishable as often we presume. History does not belong only to its narrators, professional or amateur. While some of us debate what history is or was, others take it into their own hands." p. 153

Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History (1995) by Michel-Rolph Trouillot

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Our Teachers and Custodians

The next time any of us see or hear complaints about teachers being lazy, getting paid too much, getting summers, holidays and weekends off, having unions, receiving medical insurance and pensions, we should remember what teachers and staff have done at all these schools that have suffered such horrible violence and homicide, -- when people think custodians don't deserve decent pay, benefits and respect -- and reply, "Have you no shame? Have you no shame?" "Have you no shame?"

It can happen and does happen in every kind of school. No school is immune.

Particularly when automatic weapons seemingly outnumber people in this country.

The hypocrisy of the entertainment media needs to be called out as well.

Several television series' episodes and movie openings were canceled this weekend, in order to "respect" the dead and their families, including  the Syfy Channel's Haven and Tom Cruise's impersonation of being Jack Reacher, The Killing Floor. We all know that by Monday all this stuff will be back. In meantime audiences are drooling all over the blogosphere in anticipation of Tarantino's exploitation and appropriation of black exploitation flicks, slavery and westerns, with rape, torture, whippings and a blood-kill toll in the hundreds. They can't wait -- while at the same time typing diatribes of how they hope this latest killer burns in hell, and what they'd do with him if they got their hands on him -- in the grandest revenge movie and gamer style. We can't even see our disconnect here, our hypocrisy of decrying real life violence while playing violence, looking at violence during so many of our 'free' waking hours.

Nobody says a word about the culture of murder and rape in video and computer gaming. The NRA howls anytime one mentions gun ownership regulation of automatic weapons, but their howls are not louder than the gaming industry.

Yet we wonder that in a nation that lives on and by what the entertainment media and the NRA lives on, a nation so saturated with weapons in the hands of individuals, that this goes on. "How can we stop it?" we ask hopelessly. Which hypocrisy is nauseating. We all know how to change this culture. We also all know that it won't be allowed. We won't allow it, while we will allow entertainment and the NRA make billions from the deaths of our own children. And even ourselves, as happened with the gun-collecting mother of this latest terribly disturbed shooter who spent a huge amount of the hours of his limited life killing as a game.


K. said...

It hasn't escaped me that all of a sudden we hear nothing about the anti-education NEA and public schools being synonymous with dead wood etc etc ad nauseam.

Foxessa said...

The NRA has been very quiet until today too, when it announced it will make a statement on Friday. Or something like that.

A very dear friend who lives part-time in France, has grandchildren in Connecticut. His oldest, a grand-daughter goes to the school over from Newtown's elementary school. He's flown back from France, and is lobbying hard to make his family move to his place there. But, um, his son-in-law, his career is in NYC ....

Love, C.