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Mon Dec 31, 2012, 04:54 PM

SF student suspended over Connecticut poem (about school shooter)

A San Francisco high school senior is suspended because of a poem she wrote which dealt with the school shooting in Connecticut. What she wrote has left officials with a dilemma.

It was a dark poem and in the wake of the Connecticut tragedy, it raised red flags and triggered a quick response by school officials. Now the student is facing the possibility of being expelled.

"I understand the killings in Connecticut. I know why he pulled the trigger," said Courtni Webb, the suspended student.

Those words in Webb's poem prompted school officials at the Life Learning Academy on Treasure Island to suspend the 17-year-old senior until further notice.

(...)

She says she didn't turn in the poem as an assignment. Instead, the teacher discovered it in class and took it to the principal. But Webb says she's turned in dark poems about suicide and sadness in the past with no problem. It's a genre she likes.

full: http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/local/san_francisco&id=8934233

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Reply SF student suspended over Connecticut poem (about school shooter) (Original post)
alp227 Dec 2012 OP
regnaD kciN Dec 2012 #1
Brickbat Dec 2012 #2
immoderate Dec 2012 #3
WolverineDG Dec 2012 #28
immoderate Jan 2013 #33
WolverineDG Jan 2013 #42
immoderate Jan 2013 #49
regnaD kciN Jan 2013 #78
kentauros Jan 2013 #110
Angry Dragon Dec 2012 #4
knitter4democracy Dec 2012 #5
a la izquierda Dec 2012 #24
knitter4democracy Jan 2013 #39
Last Stand Jan 2013 #44
coalition_unwilling Jan 2013 #82
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #6
davidn3600 Dec 2012 #7
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #8
11 Bravo Dec 2012 #9
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #11
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #12
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #16
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #20
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #21
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #23
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #25
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #26
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #27
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #29
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #30
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #32
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #35
Luminous Animal Jan 2013 #62
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #64
Luminous Animal Jan 2013 #68
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #69
Luminous Animal Jan 2013 #75
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #83
Luminous Animal Jan 2013 #89
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #90
Luminous Animal Jan 2013 #97
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #98
davidn3600 Dec 2012 #31
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #13
Luminous Animal Dec 2012 #15
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #18
NutmegYankee Jan 2013 #41
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #52
NutmegYankee Jan 2013 #53
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #54
NutmegYankee Jan 2013 #55
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #56
NutmegYankee Jan 2013 #58
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #59
BarackTheVote Jan 2013 #73
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #86
BarackTheVote Jan 2013 #102
SammyWinstonJack Dec 2012 #22
white_wolf Jan 2013 #38
Drunken Irishman Jan 2013 #101
WilliamPitt Jan 2013 #37
cornbread_king Jan 2013 #99
ellie Dec 2012 #10
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #14
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #17
immoderate Jan 2013 #36
nadinbrzezinski Dec 2012 #19
JanMichael Jan 2013 #34
NutmegYankee Jan 2013 #40
aikoaiko Jan 2013 #43
hughee99 Jan 2013 #45
Posteritatis Jan 2013 #50
KurtNYC Jan 2013 #46
BarackTheVote Jan 2013 #81
KurtNYC Jan 2013 #106
farminator3000 Jan 2013 #47
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #60
farminator3000 Jan 2013 #61
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #63
farminator3000 Jan 2013 #66
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #67
farminator3000 Jan 2013 #74
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #85
farminator3000 Jan 2013 #87
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #88
BarackTheVote Jan 2013 #80
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #84
Chorophyll Jan 2013 #103
TXDem72 Jan 2013 #92
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #93
Chorophyll Jan 2013 #104
farminator3000 Jan 2013 #48
Mdterp01 Jan 2013 #51
knitter4democracy Jan 2013 #72
Puregonzo1188 Jan 2013 #57
KittyWampus Jan 2013 #65
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #70
knitter4democracy Jan 2013 #71
unblock Jan 2013 #76
RKP5637 Jan 2013 #77
RKP5637 Jan 2013 #79
TXDem72 Jan 2013 #91
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #94
Taverner Jan 2013 #95
Warren DeMontague Jan 2013 #100
ecstatic Jan 2013 #96
Chorophyll Jan 2013 #105
ecstatic Jan 2013 #107
Chorophyll Jan 2013 #108
Chorophyll Jan 2013 #109
knitter4democracy Jan 2013 #112
dembotoz Jan 2013 #111

Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 05:01 PM

1. Because, of course...

...the Newtown killer left all sorts of poems about his plans.



Seriously, how paranoid is this society?

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 05:05 PM

2. Yes, it would be a horrible thing if anyone tried to understand how this happened, or to try to talk

about it.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 05:12 PM

3. What means "discovered?"

Not that it makes much difference, because school is where you're supposed to learn things, and discuss and examine radical or disturbing ideas, not exile them.

Irrelevant, but interesting, is how the poem materialized, or was obtained. Did she display it, or not?

How can you discourage expression? Where do they learn limits? And where do they learn about "freedom of expression?"

--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #3)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 09:33 PM

28. I had a spiral notebook that I used for science class

in the back of it, I wrote a few poems. I forgot to tear them out when I handed the notebook in at the end of the week & the teacher found them.

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Response to WolverineDG (Reply #28)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 03:56 AM

33. So -- did you get extra credit?

Or, what happened?

--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #33)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 11:58 AM

42. The teacher left a note

saying that she liked my poems &should keep writing

But I posted this to show how a teacher could have come across this poem accidentally.

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Response to WolverineDG (Reply #42)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 03:05 PM

49. Gotcha!



--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #3)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 08:09 PM

78. Wrong...!

Not that it makes much difference, because school is where you're supposed to learn things, and discuss and examine radical or disturbing ideas, not exile them.


That might be the idealist conception of school, but, here in these United States, the point of public schools is 1) to train people to behave in ways expected by society and 2) to learn sufficient skills to become a good productive little worker bee for our corporate world. For further details, see Jonathan Kozol's The Night Is Dark And I Am Far From Home.

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Response to regnaD kciN (Reply #78)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 11:27 AM

110. School is indeed about conformity.

However, I question that they are learning the skills needed for the corporate world. They are certainly being taught in how to take tests, and how to memorize by rote. What they retain isn't emphasized. How many are being taught the tools of corporate life, such as Excel, Word, Powerpoint, and so forth? I read quite often of how colleges and universities have to offer remedial courses for incoming students, just to get them up to college-level courses. And corporations don't do much training any more.

I suppose if they are taught how to have meetings and deflect responsibility, they'll get by in that life without having to learn the common software products. Knowing how to "facebook" won't get them very far.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 05:28 PM

4. The thought police at it again

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 05:41 PM

5. I'm an English teacher, and I'm appalled.

I've gotten 3 suicide notes in my career, and I regularly read students' work that is dark and often disturbing. Why didn't the teacher talk with her about the poem first? Why not try to see if she was threatening action or just trying to write through what she felt about it? The poem was discovered and then turned in? That sounds like crappy teaching to me.

No one should be expelled over a poem in the US. No one.

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Response to knitter4democracy (Reply #5)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 09:01 PM

24. I wrote some seriously dark and disturbed poetry...

as a 17 year old kid. My teacher made sure I wasn't hurting, and then encouraged my creativity. I wish I still had some of that poetry.

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Response to a la izquierda (Reply #24)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 09:56 AM

39. That's what we're supposed to do.

Check with student, get kid help if needed, keep kid writing. It's really not that difficult to understand.

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Response to knitter4democracy (Reply #5)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 12:13 PM

44. *Rejection* rather than dealing with it

is what created the shooters to begin with.

So now we suspend students rather than working with them to help them heal.

When will we learn?

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Response to knitter4democracy (Reply #5)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 09:19 PM

82. Suppression of free speech is as American as cherry pie. - n/t

 

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 05:52 PM

6. Really? She "knows why" he pointed a semi-automatic weapon at 6 year old kids & pulled the trigger?

Maybe I'll get flamed, but I think making that statement does merit psychiatric observation. Or at the very least a long, serious talk about how this shooting was, at the end of the day, fundamentally about more than some alienated teen's navel-gazing sense of societal Ennui.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #6)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 07:34 PM

7. Yeah let's just toss aside freedom of expression

Unless you agree with the majority there must be something wrong with you.

So this woman needs a psychological evaluation? Why? Because she's not sad enough or crying enough to fit your definition of normal? Because she's trying to understand the mindset of the gunman?

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Response to davidn3600 (Reply #7)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:10 PM

8. Yeah! ...Or, we could just dance around a giant fucking straw man made of red herrings.

"let's toss aside freedom of expression"? You'll convince me that High School Students while in school have unlimited freedom of expression after you get that Supreme Court ruling overturned that allowed a school to discipline a student for his "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" banner that he unfurled--- while NOT at school.

And I disagreed with that ruling. It's also worth noting that I haven't suggested she's not entitled to express her opinion.

What I HAVE suggested- and I'm sorry if I'm not sympathetic enough, for you, to the selfish, navel-gazing twit who "understands" why a teenager would feel so oppressed by "societah!" that they would "need" to kill a bunch of 1st graders- is that she ought to have her self-centered little Millennial head examined. Because this isn't tossing a cherry bomb into a toilet or spray painting an "Anarchy" symbol on a street sign, this is walking into a room full of little children and methodically, deliberately, filling them with bullets.

She "understands why" someone would do that? Fuck Her. Wear black eyeliner or listen to the early albums of the fucking Cure if society alienates you so fucking much. Don't take it out on a bunch of innocent kids.

I'm going to posit that, yes, in this case, if someone does not 'agree with the majority' that there is something MASSIVELY FUCKED UP ABOUT KILLING 20 6 YEAR OLDS, THEN YES,
THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH THAT PERSON.


Am I going to apologize for not being "understanding" enough of this erstwhile "poet"? Um, No.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #8)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:16 PM

9. ^^^^^ THIS ^^^^^

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #8)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:20 PM

11. All this without having read the poem.

And you have no clue whether or not she believes there is something massively fucked up about killing 6 year olds.

Happy New Year.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #11)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:25 PM

12. Ohhhhh, Heavens, the outrage. The unfair-ittyness of it all.

Why do you disrespect the jobs done by our hardworking teachers and school administrators? Don't you trust their judgment?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #12)


Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #12)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:44 PM

20. It is a charter school. I have no clue how they run their business.

Fortunately, the issue now moves on to the REAL public system which will make the final decision on whether to suspend her or not. I've already talked to 2 school board members (friends of mine) who seem determined that she not be railroaded in a fit of outrage.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #20)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:53 PM

21. I think she maybe could benefit from some empathy classes, and/or psychotherapy

perhaps medication.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #21)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:59 PM

23. Again, you haven't read the poem. You haven't a clue whether or not empathy was

expressed for the victims. Or, for that matter, the focus of the poem at all. Hell, she could have written 3 or 20 poems each from different perspectives of sorting out her feelings about the killings.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #23)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 09:02 PM

25. Given what I've seen of the poem, she doesn't have a clue as to what this tragedy was about.

Like I said, if someone feels alienated by society, they can wear black eyeliner or listen to shitty music. Killing kids is not an 'understandable' response.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #25)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 09:05 PM

26. Link to the poem? Even my friends on the school board haven't seen it.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #26)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 09:21 PM

27. They should try using teh google.

It would appear that, in addition to "society", the government is at fault.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #27)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 09:58 PM

29. Can we see the entire poem or is that the only part that NBC will allow us to see?

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #29)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 10:14 PM

30. Yes, I'm sure it's a MASSIVE media conspiracy.

Maybe you can tell your friends on the School Board that they're doing an atrocious job of teaching these High Schoolers proper spelling and grammar, too.

At least as evidenced by the parts ("use to", "triger") of the poem we are "allowed" (Boo! Spooky!) to see.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #30)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 10:39 PM

32. So, you are not interested in seeing the entire poem?

You have no curiosity as to why NBC chose to present a truncated version? Certainly if they have the entire thing they can give us more than a snip. Or why 17 year old kid who wrote a poem is national news?

And FYI, most school board members don't teach (though many have) but rather they are facilitators of communication and between the education department and the populous with the goal of setting policy.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #32)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:18 AM

35. by the "populous", do you mean the "populace"?

Yeah, um. Education.

Anyway, that was an image taken of the poem. You claimed that "no one had seen any more of it than the one line", yet it took me 5 minutes on google to find that, which contained at least a good chunk of it. For all I know, somewhere there's a reproduction of the whole, entire thing.

I imagine that NBC presented the offending lines from the poem, as opposed to the entire thing, because it's really not that big of a story.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #35)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 05:36 PM

62. Why yes, I did mean populace. I blame it on the bourbon...

What is your excuse for misquoting me?

This phrase that you put in quotations... "no one had seen any more of it than the one line", is something that I did not say.

Education, indeed.

As for NBC choosing to present the "offending" lines, I suspect they are just doing their best to keep some people's underwear in a knot.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #62)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 05:44 PM

64. Keep kickin the thread.

Your quote: "Link to the poem? Even my friends on the school board haven't seen it."

So, I provided a visual link to at least a portion of the poem. So like I said, your school board friends really ought to learn this google image search.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #64)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 06:21 PM

68. And there it is. I said my friends hadn't seen it. I didn't say no one had seen it.

So, you misquoted me.

I'll let my friends know about this google-y thingy.

Oh wait, I already did. This is one response to you (and I paraphrase):

Please let Mr. DeMontague that I've seen the snip of the poem and I've heard a few lines quoted; but as of yesterday, I hadn't seen the entire piece. Seeing and hearing a few selected lines is worthless to me. I am not going to make an important decision to advocate on behalf of a student based incomplete information.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #68)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 06:28 PM

69. Weren't you the one, back in October, starting threads about a certain site admin's mom

because of outrage that someone who used the word "b***h" about Jan Brewer wasn't banned from DU for it?

Fuck, talk about irony.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #69)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 07:57 PM

75. Good luck finding any post from me that advocates or supports

banning anyone because use of the word "b***h". Or any word. I may protest the use of the word when directed towards people as I do also, on other political discussion boards, when I see it used against Hillary Clinton, for example. But who is deemed ban worthy is the Admins job.

I didn't start threads about Skinner's mom. I started one OP that asked a question about how Skinner would characterize his mom or his wife and how he would feel if someone else characterized them as such. And it never turned into a thread. It was more a stitch, really, given that it received only one response before it was hidden.


Hey, where did you get the rolling on the floor laughing smiley? I've never seen that before.








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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #75)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 09:44 PM

83. OK, Here's the hidden thread. You also characterized it as a word whose use causes

"Concern for safety"

http://www.democraticunderground.com/1240159351

So, lets recap: someone calling Jan Brewer a b**** implies an unacceptable level of violence, yet a high school student writing that she, quote, "undertands why" a sicko shot 20 little kids...

That must not be criticized, lest we tread upon the hallowed ground of poetic free expression.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #83)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 10:57 PM

89. No. An anonymous person scrawling a well-known anti-woman slur on my house

would imply a disdain for my gender and and cause me to catalog the event and remove it immediately. As I have stated elsewhere, I wouldn't know whether a 10 year old kid had done it simply for the kicks of writing a "bad" word on the wall, or someone venting their anger against females in my neighborhood. I would have similar concern for the people in my neighborhood if I saw n*****, or f**. Chances are better than not, that if it was an adult, simply writing the word to make their targets feel unsafe is the sole intent... but that is cold comfort.

On the other hand, I see and hear the word b**** quite often in literature and music and it doesn't have affect me in the same way. I don't like it. I think it contributes to a situation where one might take out their hatred of women by scrawling it on a building for all women to see. I think it contributes to the denigration of women as a class. (And, I spent way to much time on more open discussion boards arguing that Hillary Clinton shouldn't be called a bitch.) But also, I have been called a b**** and d**e by strangers and believe you me, I get away from that situation as quickly as I can.

Nobody says this girl shouldn't be criticized. We can criticize without trampling on freedom of expression. We are saying that she shouldn't be censored and expelled. We can say, "Hey, what did you mean by understand" She has stated that "understands why" does not mean she agrees with the action. If the teacher had sat down with the girl and talked about the piece, the teacher could have found that out and perhaps used it as an opportunity to assist her to better express herself.






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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #89)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:02 AM

90. ...She's NOT being "censored", and I've said I don't think expulsion is warranted here.

A trip to the school psychologist, at the very least, may be. Because i think anyone- whatever "issues" they may have rattling around in their heads which allow them to justify their nonsensical noise to themselves- who thinks pulling the "triger" on a bunch of 6 year kids is an "understandable" response to "society" (or, or that matter, who thinks calling a far right female governor a "b***h" is somehow worse than apologia for a mass shooting) - has some real big, deep problems, starting with but not limited to narcissism and an empathy deficit.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #90)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 01:07 AM

97. You are making two assumptions that are incorrect...

1) I do not believe that the girl thinks killing children is an understandable response to society. She has stated so herself. What I believe she is trying to say is that she understands alienation from a cruel society. A GOOD teacher would have assisted her in expressing that more elegantly and probably would have helped her expand her vocabulary.

2) IF if if if, I thought it were true, if I took her words at face value, I'd be advancing an entirely different argument which would include a scathing denunciation of that view.


My daughter writes. While she was growing up, I read quite a bit of her half-baked and "ignorant" stuff. Poems, essays and short stories that were, essentially stream of thought - not worked over and not meant to be viewed by outsiders... just things that popped into her head. And when people write things that pop into their head, it can be, well... eye-popping. When she wrote things for public consumption, she and I would spend days, weeks, sometimes months sussing out the precise language and meter that would best illustrate what she was trying to convey. We'd sit with dictionaries, and thesauruses, and do the google-y thing to search phrases in order to avoid the "trite". She has been working on one song for two years.

One of the things that resonates with me about this girl is her reference to Stephen King. When my daughter was 15 she took a youth writing workshop with the author Michael Chabon titled Fantasy and Dark Fiction. Stephen King is a friend of Chabon's and offered (as a result of a casual phone conversation) to fly from New Hampshire to San Francisco to lead one of the sessions. It was a remarkably generous thing to do. The goal of the workshop was to encourage the kids to explore their darkest thoughts - thoughts that they might ordinarily repress or wake up sweating and frightened as a result of a nightmare. As my daughter tells it, King's one day contribution was invaluable (and fortunately she recorded it on audio tape and still has it 8 years later); freeing many in the workshop to write things that they had often thought but were afraid to commit to paper. Much of what they wrote before and after King's visit would have sparked suggestions that they be evaluated by a psychiatrist.


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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #97)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 01:35 AM

98. I am about as anti-censorship as they come; still one ought to be sensitive to the fact

That schools are going to be hyper-vigilant around this for a while. I mean, thats a no brainer.

So if this were a skinhead writing poems about how he "understands why Hitler killed all those Jews" or a member of he football team who had written how he "understands why those guys in India raped that woman on the bus, and beat her to death" ...would you still not think at least a perfunctory visit to the psychologist's office was in order? Honest question.

I do. If this girl can articulate her position as well as she seems to on tv, she will do fine in the psych office. And maybe everyone will come away at bit wiser, including her.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #27)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 10:21 PM

31. So what? Lots of people are pissed off at the government

That's nothing new.

There are people here at DU who are angry at the government for various reasons.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #11)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:27 PM

13. I read one line: "I understand the killings... I know why he pulled the trigger"

Let's get beyond our deep respect for the special precious feelings of the alienated millennial teen and cut right to the FUCKING CHASE about what it is she's expressing "understanding of". Pointing a gun at a 6 year old kid and killing them. And then, doing it again. 20 times.

Really? She "understands why"? You don't think that's a smidgen fucked up?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #13)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:33 PM

15. She could have said 50 other sentences that might have put it in context...

there may have been a larger point. I am not going to start trusting the MSM to give us anything more than but a reason to spark outrage in order to drive viewers to their site.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #15)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:41 PM

18. Maybe.

Still, if Mr. Bong Hits 4 Jesus can get kicked out of school, she sure can.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #18)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 10:18 AM

41. No, she can't.

The Morse v. Frederick decision, while sad, was quite narrow in it's scope, covering only promotion of illegal drug use. The girl in question did not advocate violence or committing any illegal acts. Also, the poem was not part of a school assignment or speech and therefor is not subject to the censorship provisions of the Frasier or Hazelwood decisions. This is a clear cut violation of the girl's right to free expression.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #41)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:23 PM

52. I think you would find that schools have an awful lot of latitutude to determine, one,

what constitutes grounds for expulsion, and two, what constitutes advocacy of violence or illegal acts.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #52)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:25 PM

53. And the courts will overrule that and slam the tax payers with quite a bill.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #53)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:28 PM

54. We'll see, won't we, then.

Personally, I don't think explusion is necessarily warranted. Empathy classes, a good sit-down explanation about what exactly happened when 20 first graders got blown apart by a semi-automatic rifle, a visit to the school psychologist and some remedial spelling would probably be more productive in this case.

But hey, at least she wasn't "advocating teh illegal drugz"!

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #54)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:37 PM

55. We will see. I'm betting she doesn't get expelled and the suspension is lifted.

Bookmarked.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #55)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:42 PM

56. I'm not betting either way.

I just think she needs to buy a serious fucking clue.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #56)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:45 PM

58. But that just focuses on the content of her speech.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #58)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:48 PM

59. So fucking what?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #59)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 07:12 PM

73. First of all

just because you "understand" doesn't mean you condone. I'd say she's displaying an impressive amount of empathy. It seems that your main argument is that nobody should try to understand why Lanza did what he did, and anyone who tries is clearly dangerous, which is absolutely and patently ridiculous. Many great pieces of literature revolve around trying to unpack the motivations of the worst characters the author can conceive, who are usually based on real people. For that matter, do you really think there were no societal pressures that might have contributed to Lanza's actions? The basic foundation of writing, acting, and directing is the idea that we all have the potential within us to be virtually anyone, and everyone is basically the same; our experiences, and the particular pressures placed on us by our circumstances have made us disparate individuals--therefore, if you can imagine yourself in the situation of your characters, you can answer basic questions of motivation. This is the ultimate in unflinching empathy. But most importantly, trying to understand a monster does not mean that you lack sympathy for their victims--but it's no long stretch to accept that the monster's first and last victim is itself, and whether this was a case of man vs. self, man vs. society, man vs. God, or man vs. nature, there is always a personal antagonist and a causal chain that leads to all action, and therein, you can even find sympathy for the worst of people.

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Response to BarackTheVote (Reply #73)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 10:04 PM

86. There is also a difference between "trying to" understand and stating flat out "i understand"

Im not demanding this girl be kicked out of school. I think its reasonable to, as you put it, 'unpack' exactly what she says in that poem (to wit: "i understand why he pulled the trigger") ... Shes talking about someone who "pulled the trigger" while the gun was aimed at 6 year old children.

Um, I think that may indicate some emotional issues. It may be a cry for help.

Would you feel the same if it was a skinhead who wrote "I understand why.... Hitler gassed all those Jews"? How about a football player who wrote "I understand why... those guys on that bus in India raped that woman and beat her with a lead pipe until she was in a coma"?

You really wouldn't have a problem with a high school student bringing a "poem" like that to school?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #86)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 07:34 AM

102. "understanding" is quite often the reult of genuine "trying to understand"

Her teacher should have sat down and talked to her and tried to understand what she was saying in her poem. That's totally cool, and if the teacher had done it with genuine interest in this girl, what she was going through, and what the meaning of the poem was, it would only be encouraging. And if, over the course of that discussion, she learned that the girl was a nutjob, then, okay. Send her to the shrink.

As for your "would you feel the same" comment, I call hyperbole and strawman on you. That is not the situation we're talking about. We are talking about a teenage girl (who is not exactly a high risk profiler for a school shooter) whose work was stolen and used to persecute her. Anyone who respects artistic expression and freedom of speech should be absolutely incensed by this situation. But since you ask the question, yes, I would feel the same, especially since neither of those lines express intent. And it's, frankly, easy to understand monsters, at least in the broadest terms; those lines don't suggest anything more than that. But even if some kind of intent was expressed, I'd still talk to the kid as a first step, maybe bring in the principal at that point, express your concern, and try to see if the kid was just practicing creative writing, or if they really were a danger.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #8)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:53 PM

22. ...

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #8)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 05:00 AM

38. That was a bullshit ruling

I firmly stand with Justice Black in his view that freedom of speech is absolute. Yes, that's a minority view and one that has never been accepted by the courts, but I still stand by it.

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Response to davidn3600 (Reply #7)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 05:54 AM

101. Where do we draw the line?

I see a lot of people shouting freedom of speech and freedom of expression. This is a school ... and there are rules. I wonder what people would think if a student wrote a poem calling gay people faggots or black people niggers and other hateful language - would that just be free expression?

I'm not saying I agree with suspending her ... but there is a disconnect here because I know DUers would not put up with the free expression of hate speech. When I was in school, I could not wear a shirt that had FUCK written on it and if I did, I would have been told to change or leave the premise and I went to a public school.

Is there something awful here? Probably not. But that doesn't mean you ignore situations like that and certainly her freedom of expression is limited in a schoolhouse and it always will be because that's just how it is. And I think we can all agree, for safety and comfort, it's not a bad thing. We want students to feel safe and comfortable in school and that doesn't happen if we allow every single person to show their free expression because as we've seen, that includes opinions that aren't widely popular.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #6)


Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #6)


Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:17 PM

10. How many rhymes were there

with the word "cocksucker"?

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Response to ellie (Reply #10)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:31 PM

14. It's about alienation! From Society, maaaaaan!

Dig it!

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:41 PM

17. "and in the end... I blame society!"

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #17)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:24 AM

36. Consider the ratio of imaginary murderers to real murderers.

It's unlikely that every person who expresses weird thoughts is a mass murderer.

I am reminded of an eighth grade student I taught. Nice kid and we got along well. We talked about science fiction mostly out of class. At the end of the year he gave me a gift. Models of a guillotine and a medieval stretching rack. Neither was made from a kit. His hobby was modeling machines of torture from found materials.

A lot of my friends thought "he should be examined," but one, who was a folk-art dealer told me he would have bought them if he hadn't thought I was attached to them. The kid was a ners who liked building models. He never went on to kill anybody.

--imm

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Mon Dec 31, 2012, 08:44 PM

19. People should be troubled

And I will leave it at that (and not about the student)

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:16 AM

34. I am not sure this should have resulted in a suspension

this student sounds like she needs support, and help....NOT shunning.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 10:07 AM

40. That school is about to take a serious ass wooping.

The poem doesn't make any threats, and is protected speech under the 1969 Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District. The Girl's family is going to win big time.

While the topic is dark, the intent of the poem is to discuss society.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 12:10 PM

43. Sounds like an automatic visit to the school psychologist, but


suspension and possible expulsion seems over the top give the facts as they are presented.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 12:22 PM

45. Of course, if the teacher had just graded the work and then that student did something awful

there would be a bunch of people yelling about how this teacher ignored the "warning signs". I have a lot of respect for all the things teachers do, but reading minds and predicting the future aren't among them. I understand the teacher's need to "cover their ass", but suspension and expulsion aren't the way to handle this either.

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Response to hughee99 (Reply #45)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 03:48 PM

50. It wasn't an assignment in the first place. (nt)

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 12:30 PM

46. Here is a different poem. One which produced a different outcome:

"He found a six-shooter gun / in his dad's closet,
with the box of fun things. I don't even know what,
but he's coming for you. Yeah, He's coming for you!"
...
All the other kids with their pumped up kicks (athletic shoes),
they better run, better run,
out run my bullets..." -Foster the People, "Pumped up Kicks"

It sold many copies and was a hit song. Now it is pulled from radio play:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/19/pumped-up-kicks-newtown-foster-the-people-school-shooting_n_2329503.html

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Response to KurtNYC (Reply #46)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 09:16 PM

81. Love that song. Has a sound like nothing else.

Remember after 9/11 when we said we would never let terrorism change our way of life? All we proved was that we are a nation of cowards.

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Response to BarackTheVote (Reply #81)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 08:56 AM

106. I think we perpetually "solve" the wrong problem

It's a kind of cultural dyslexia. 911 was a kind of Shock Doctrine bait and switch.

"Feed the Homeless" (?!) -- but their problem is shelter.

Guns + mental illness = stop playing certain songs on the radio.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 12:41 PM

47. politically correct SCHOOLS? sheesh. blargh. san fran? ugh. i'm embarressed 2 be liberal...

"Why are we oppressed by a dysfunctional community of haters and blamers?" wrote Webb in the poem.

Webb said, "The meaning of the poem is just talking about society and how I understand why things like that incident happened. So it's not like I'm agreeing with it, but that's how the school made it seem."

She says she didn't turn in the poem as an assignment. Instead, the teacher discovered it in class and took it to the principal. But Webb says she's turned in dark poems about suicide and sadness in the past with no problem. It's a genre she likes.

"For example, the only person I can think of would be like Stephen King. He writes weird stuff all the time. That doesn't mean he's going to do it or act it out," said Webb.

come on, california, you can do better. i can't believe any self-respecting hippie wouldn't take their kid out of that school like..yesterday!

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Response to farminator3000 (Reply #47)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:50 PM

60. "I know why he pulled the triger" (her spelling)

Really?

She "knows why" he pointed a Bushmaster 223 at a 6 year old and fired?

You don't see a problem with that statement?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #60)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 05:28 PM

61. not really, its called a poem...what does spelling have to do with anything?

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


is dylan thomas telling people to shoot lasers out of their eyes?

http://famouspoetsandpoems.com/poets/dylan_thomas/poems/11395

in poems, you are allowed to use words. period.

so what if you think it is bad poetry, and i don't think most psychopaths dot their i's with circles...

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Response to farminator3000 (Reply #61)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 05:41 PM

63. Eh. She's no Dylan Thomas. And, she's in High School.

She is subject to the school rules and policies.

Also, as much as I like Bob Geldof and appreciated his performance in The Wall, that song is in horrible fucking taste right now. I don't care if people want to puff up and get huffy about "poetry" and "art". You've got 20 6 year olds barely buried and people choose now to make some fucking grand pricipled stand about "artistic expression".

IT'S FUCKING OBNOXIOUS.

Would it be appropriate if a Skinhead showed up at school with a poem "understanding why" Hitler "needed" to kill 6 million Jews? Or for some male High School football player to write a "poem" about how he "understands why" the thugs in India raped the 23 year old woman to death?



Like I said, some people need to buy a clue and stop operating on fucking autopilot. Think about context.


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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #63)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 06:09 PM

66. yeah, she seems really dangerous...

the point is, schools have no right to censor her.

i'm sure her mother knew the poem existed, maybe even helped her.

why don't you write some poems, sounds like you have some ideas, there!

the context is- some completely harmless kid writes a not-that-great poem, everybody freaks out

some psycho kid in basement, obviously disturbed, nothing is done, becomes a mass murderer

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Response to farminator3000 (Reply #66)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 06:21 PM

67. And how is anyone supposed to determine that the psycho kid is 'disturbed'?

Well, maybe one place to start is material written and brought to school deemed questionable by school administrators.

No one is 'censoring' her, in fact, due to the brou-ha-ha she's on national tv, reading the "poem" in question. So "censorship"? Hardly.

And I've said myself I don't think this thing necessarily warrants expulsion or even suspension. But a trip to the school psychologist? Yeah, I think that's reasonable.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #67)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 07:19 PM

74. by talking to them?

censor
: a person who supervises conduct and morals: as
a : an official who examines materials (as publications or films) for objectionable matter

the school is censoring her, as if the poem was written for publishing. do you think the school called up the media and said "report this!"??

so we agree, at least, that a trip to the school doctor is good.

i just don't get why it went beyond that? she's harmless, i doubt her friends are worried about anything.

check this out-
http://www.lyricsfreak.com/j/johnny+mandel/suicide+is+painless_20801409.html

Suicide Is Painless
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Johnny Mandel (music) and Mike Altman (lyrics), which is best known for having been featured as the theme song for both the movie and TV series M*A*S*H. The actual title is "Song from M*A*S*H (Suicide is Painless)". Mike Altman is the son of the original film’s director, Robert Altman, and was 14 years old when he wrote the song’s lyrics. During an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in the 1980s, Robert Altman said that his son had earned more than a million US dollars for having co-written the song while he only made US$70,000 for having directed the movie.


edit: spelling? i don't get that part. psychos are usually MORE intelligent, or, what's your point?

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Response to farminator3000 (Reply #74)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 09:55 PM

85. I haven't said I think she's a "psycho", have I?

I think she may have some emotional stuff going on, i think one could argue that the "poem" (at least the "i understand why" line) is something of a cry for help. I think her writing that displays a serious lack of understanding of/empathy for what actually went down in Newtown.

But if a certain lack of understanding/empathy were pathological in teens, shit, many would probably qualify... its arguable that that portion of the brain doesn't fully develop until around 25.

I am not saying that her writing this means shes capable of or likely to commit a similar crime.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #85)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 10:05 PM

87. you seem to be implying something here-

Warren DeMontague
67.And how is anyone supposed to determine that the psycho kid is 'disturbed'?

Well, maybe one place to start is material written and brought to school deemed questionable by school administrators.


I think she may have some emotional stuff going on,

were YOU in The Wall?

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Response to farminator3000 (Reply #87)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 10:13 PM

88. Yes. If you dont eat your meat, you cant have any pudding.

Last edited Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:02 AM - Edit history (1)

Anyway, your point here only works if i'm stating everyone with "emotional issues" is a psycho. I used the word psycho in that post in direct response to the previous one, because you used it first, here:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=2112656


For the record, no, I dont think based upon the available evidence (i.e. the poem) this girl is a psycho.

...not everyone with issues is a psycho. Shit, look around; there are allllll kinds of mental things that go on, emotional issues, multiple personalities, gender dysphoria, pathological lying, etc. Paranoid people who think the brutes at NASA are out to bomb their friends in the star folks lunar colony.

A rich pageant, nay tapestry, of things which can go bump in peoples' heads.

Only a small subset of these, would I label genuinely "psycho"

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #63)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 09:13 PM

80. Any time anyone threatens your artistic liberties

you stand the fuck up. Does not matter what else is going on. You don't sit down and shut up when someone's using a tragedy as an excuse to stifle your voice.

It is not difficult to understand why she said what she said--she is taking something topical and shocking to make her point. Not exactly an uncommon device.

She should sue the teacher, sue the principal, sue the school, and walk away with, literally, all the money.

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Response to BarackTheVote (Reply #80)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 09:48 PM

84. Good luck.

Like i said, i think "bong hits 4 jesus" was a far more cogent piece of artistic expression, yet the supreme court didnt agree.

So, let me ask; you don't think that the statement, in reference to the Newtown shootings of 20 little kids- the statement "I understand why he pulled the triger" (her spelling) might merit concern from school administrators? Psychiatric evaluation? You don't think, maybe, its something of a cry for help?

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #84)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 07:53 AM

103. Did you NEVER write a poem when you were a teenager?

I'm the kind of person who can't even kill a bug in my house, but when I was in high school I wrote all kinds of tortured shit and left it lying around, mostly for shock value.

And regarding that one line you're so fixated on: no, the kid probably DOESN'T understand "why he pulled the triger," and she's so young that the reality of the situation doesn't mean nearly as much to her as it does to you and me. Teenagers -- even the best of them -- walk around in a layer of self-absorption so thick that everything is distorted by it. I remember being like this, and I am no "millennial."

If I were the teacher, I certainly would have sounded the kid out before I marched her poem off to the principal's office.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #60)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:06 AM

92. Does not validate suspension

She made no threats in her poem.

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Response to TXDem72 (Reply #92)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:18 AM

93. That wasn't my question. My question was whether that person saw a problem with the statement.

I think a psych evaluation would probably be more appropriate. This could be a sort of cry for help.

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #93)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 07:56 AM

104. I guess I must have spent the years 1979 - 1986 crying for help then.

You know, sometimes kids write "dark" poems because it seems cool. Sometimes kids are kids. The teacher could have had a five-minute conversation with this kid before going off with hair-on-fire to the principal's office.

Teenagers write shit poetry. If that ever stops happening, we're doomed.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 01:16 PM

48. maybe another student found it and told their parents? kinda sounds like police involved?

this just bugs me, because the school actually seems pretty damn cool...

Founded in 1998, the Life Learning Academy is a non-residential high school developed by the Delancey Street Foundation as part of a juvenile justice reform effort to reduce youth incarceration and recidivism.

Life Learning Academy's philosophy is based on the core principles of the Delancey Street Foundation (DSF), such as 'reciprocal restitution,' the idea that each student can make up for mistakes by giving back to the community, and 'each one teach one,' a philosophy that values everyone sharing responsibility for each other's learning. The keys to LLA's success include: (1) the degree to which the students are involved in school management; and, (2) the innovative, project-based curricula including actual in-school entrepreneurial and career development programs. Life Learning Academy is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
http://www.lifelearningacademysf.org/about.html
***
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delancey_Street_Foundation

http://www.delanceystreetfoundation.org/

***

http://www.nytimes.com/1989/03/01/us/san-francisco-journal-where-life-s-losers-are-building-new-lives.html

SAN FRANCISCO JOURNAL; Where Life's 'Losers' Are Building New Lives
By JANE GROSS, Special to the New York Times
Published: March 01, 1989

On a triangle of waterfront property here, hundreds of former convicts and drug addicts are involved in the ultimate sweat equity project - building a complex of apartments and stores where they will live and work and dream.

skip to end...

The interview with bank officials was a vintage performance by Ms. Silbert, who lived for a decade with Delancey Street's founder, John Maher, a former drug addict and alcoholic who left the foundation in 1985 and died last year of a heart attack. The bank asked all the typical questions, like ''What's your budget?'' Ms. Silbert said. To each she answered, ''We don't really do it that way.''

The bank proposed a loan with the project as collateral, but Ms. Silbert declined. ''We think like poor people,'' she said. ''The idea of somebody else owning our building is unacceptable.'' The bank agreed to do it her way. The Embarcadero Triangle is flanked by two new apartment complexes, where the developers at first objected to their unconventional neighbor. But Ms. Silbert won them over with the reminder that none of her residents has ever been arrested while at Delancey Street. ''I guaranteed we'd have a population that didn't abuse drugs,'' she said. ''Can they guarantee the same?''

Recently, a Justice Department official visited the site in negotiations about using Delancey Street as a national model. Ms. Silbert is not sure she wants to collaborate with the Government, but nevertheless she enjoyed the man's compliments.

''You might just want to screw up your life,'' she told him. ''Then you could live here.''

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 03:52 PM

51. I thought the teacher was snooping.

 

I saw this last night and the report made it seem like the teacher found it after opening this girls notebook or folder. It wasn't as if it was on top of the desk in plain view. A first amendment lawyer called it an outrage and so do I. I hope the mother retains legal counsel and is prepared to sue the shit out of them.

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Response to Mdterp01 (Reply #51)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 07:02 PM

72. If a folder's left in my room, I look inside to see whose it is.

That's just a simple case of not wanting to put it in the lost and found where items go to die. If I read something upon seeing it, I would talk with the student first to assess what's going on.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 04:44 PM

57. People write dark poetry. Life can be very dark. It's good for people to have an outlet.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 06:00 PM

65. And if a kid does kill themselves/others after their "dark poetry" was found by teachers

who didn't do anything or notify anyone… the teacher would be lambasted and blamed.

Suspension sounds like over-doing it.

Can we please find a balance between doing nothing and over-reacting?

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #65)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 06:44 PM

70. That's my take, too.

I think the statement "I understand why he pulled the triger" (again, her spelling) is problematic. I think a visit to the school psychologist is in order, at least.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #65)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 07:00 PM

71. It's the teacher's job to touch base with the student.

I always warn my students that I'm required by law to notify someone if they write about certain subjects, and even with that warning, kids have done exactly that and then needed the intervention that happened afterward.

Any student who writes of doing violence to him/herself needs to be talked with at the very least.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 08:02 PM

76. yeah because if someone's emotionally disturbed, the best thing is to institutionall ruin their life

first, i was ASSIGNED dark and morbid stories and poetry in english classes. there's zero evidence to suggest that a student who has written something dark has any kind of a problem.

second, assuming they DID have a problem, and was at-risk for suicide or violence to others, WHY ON EARTH would a school think that screwing them over by expelling them would help the situation? if anything that just paint a big target on the school!

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 08:05 PM

77. The "thought police" are out full time! Often I wonder if the McCarthy era will return. n/t

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Tue Jan 1, 2013, 08:10 PM

79. Sounds to me like the teacher was doing CYA and offloading it onto the

school officials. Suspension - WTF
Crappy teacher and cowards.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:04 AM

91. A suspension over this is unconstitutional and stupid

So long as she is not saying or giving indications that she would commit such an act, suppressing such dialogue is dangerous, IMO.

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Response to TXDem72 (Reply #91)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:20 AM

94. I think suppressing "bong hits 4 Jesus" was worse, personally.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:24 AM

95. WE NEED ARMED GUARDS AT EVERY POETRY SLAM!!!!

 

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Response to Taverner (Reply #95)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 05:35 AM

100. Poetry Slam?

That's, like, so 1994.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 12:41 AM

96. Their response doesn't address the issue

The young lady needs a complete psychological evaluation to determine whether she's a threat to herself and/or others. She's young so there's a chance that she's just being an idiot and isn't a sociopath. Suspending her won't do much if she decides to return to the school with a weapon or kill herself.

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Response to ecstatic (Reply #96)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 08:00 AM

105. I would say the chance she's being idiot outweighs the chance that she's a sociopath by A LOT.

If somebody talked to her for even five minutes before ordering a "complete psychological evaluation," they'd probably come to the same conclusion.

Poems are poems, and teenagers write BAD ones. But poems are not declarations or editorials. They are poems.

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Response to Chorophyll (Reply #105)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 09:39 AM

107. I agree. I remember writing an awful one

that I left lying around for my parents to see. It was negative towards them (not violent though). I still cringe when I think about it.

But I still think she should get a professional evaluation to be on the safe side. I think I was having depression issues and would have benefited from some counseling. Of course, we didn't have insurance so that wasn't an option...

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Response to ecstatic (Reply #107)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 11:06 AM

108. I just wrote horrendous stuff all the time.

I think even relatively "happy" kids do that. They're emulating the bands they like, or they just think that literature is supposed to be "dark." It's really not unusual at all.

I'm sorry you didn't get the help you needed at the time, but this girl may not need a professional evaluation. Or she might. We just don't have enough information to know that. Certainly not based on her poem. Did you see the screenshot upthread? She dots her i's with little circles. She's a kid.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 11:15 AM

109. This is the kid who wrote the poem...

http://jezebel.com/5972449/teen-poet-suspended-for-daring-to-empathize-with-adam-lanza

Perhaps she's not the isolated Goth everyone expected?

"I didn't say that I agree with it, I said I simply understand it," Webb told NBC News. "I feel like I've really been made to almost look like a monster by my school and I don't appreciate that at all."


On one hand, we encourage (some of us do, anyway) our kids to try to make sense of the world through writing. On the other hand, we punish them for it. If this girl has not shown any other signs of being dangerous, then she should not have been suspended.

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Response to Chorophyll (Reply #109)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 02:32 PM

112. So very wrong.

What was done to her is wrong on every level and crappy teaching, to boot. I'd be honored to have a student like her in my classes.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Wed Jan 2, 2013, 11:33 AM

111. so it is real damn obvious that any cries for help will be punnished at that school

does not matter if this was a cry for help or a creative attempt to explore.

any such thought will be made public and punnished

so much for diffusing a bad situation

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