I've read most of Mr. Cook's articles and he is a lot of things; direct, opinionated, culturally aware, educated, forthright, informed, abrasive, adamant, a bit self-important maybe, but not from one article can I ascertain that the man is politically correct. As a matter of fact, quite the opposite. Political correctness is what is practiced at holiday dinner tables when father-in-law is a stout, Bible belt republican and his new son-in-law is running for a democratic office on the West Coast. Certain things remain unsaid for the sake of getting through the weekend event. I doubt that Mr. Cook could bite his tongue that long.
I have found that his articles are well written with a bit of snark and a lot of insight. I hope to see more, such as what he has written and I hope that the Times Free Press knows what a gem that they have in his writings.
I've raised a son and I am raising 2 daughters, it is good to know that there are others out there that do not blindly submit to the "boys will be boys" and "act like a lady or you are asking for it" mentality. It gives me hope that the more that this behavior is called out, the more parents will look down at their children and say, "What is it that you think that she wants?" and "What do think is wrong with this grown man's thinking?" And take the prompt of the song/video/sad display and use it to educate a future to disdain that behavior and not count it as normal.
Just because they haven't seen better, believe you me, they know it is out there. And yes, many want it but don't know how to get it. Like buying your first home, there is a learning curve. Yes, many parents won't do a thing. It only takes one or two committed parents to light a fire and get a group motivated. Most parents won't. Just like most parents won't set foot into the school that their own child attends, to lift a finger but will complain loudly that they had to miss work to pick up their kid from a flooded school. Not upset that the school that sits on a hill actually flooded, just that they missed work. That is the complacency that I mentioned and it's the reality of life. But I am ONE parent, and I am willing to bring in and work with another parent, then another...I am also calling on others in the community, even younger than I am (born in the 80s with no real reason to need to organize but do it so well) to help in this one school. Make a difference where you are and hopefully, it will spread.
So what about you? Will you get involved in the betterment of education in Hamilton County? Maybe you don't have kids in the system, but these may be our future political leaders, teachers, CEOs, and small biz start-ups in the growing Chattanooga area. I believe in public schools and I will start in my community and hope for a trickle down effect. I would like to invite you to come see what I am talking about. Be involved on a ground floor level in something that HCDE has never seen...a well organized group with a purpose and eventually power to change "the way it's always been done" to something a whole lot better. BTW....I'm at CHS every Wednesday and I would love to show you around and show you ways that you can be a positive change in ONE school, one person at a time.
Welcome to what is the result of many, many years of complacency and apathy in the education "SYSTEM". I believe that the students don't realize the power that they would have if they organized. They have seen the power abused by the ones who are supposed to be responsible and have NO idea what kind of force that they can be if they banned together with a mission.
No one has told them that they "can". So in a land of "respect your elders even when they are wrong" and say "yes ma'am, no sir" to everyone...they don't know what they are allowed to do. Parents, it is time to quit your ranting and give YOUR permission for your child to exercise the very American right to assemble and accomplish the deed of improving their education AND stand behind them. Push them forward, let them know acceptable ways of organizing, when to follow the rules, when to break the rules, and which adults need to be called on the carpet for their incompetency. This means that you, the parent, will need to do a little homework, be involved in your child's school, know what is going on, and even get out there and let those voted IN, know also, that they can be voted OUT. That is what I am doing, starting with my child and then the child next to them.
And to Rickaroo....yes, many are engrossed in "texting, sexting, tweeting, facebooking, and playing with their iPads" but so are many productive adults. Many of the kids I see several times a week are also writing papers, trying to get into college, working a job, and taking AP classes in a school that is trying to change their reputation from being "that school" to "that great school".