Thursday, 13 December 2007

Fifty years ago at school ...

Situation:  Johnny and Mark get into a fight after school.
1957 - Crowd gathers. Mark wins. Johnny and Mark shake hands and end up mates.
2007 - Police called, armed offenders team arrives, arrests Johnny and Mark. Charge them with assault, both expelled even though Johnny started it. School inundated for weeks with Victim Support counsellors.

Situation:  Jeffrey won't sit still in class, and frequently disrupts other students.
1957 - Jeffrey sent to office and given a good caning by Headmaster. Returns to class, sits still.
2007 - Jeffrey given huge doses of Ritalin. Becomes a zombie. Tested for ADD. School gets extra money because Jeffrey has a disability.

Situation:  Billy breaks a window in his neighbour's car, and his Dad gives him a whipping with his belt.
1957 - Billy is more careful next time, grows up normally, goes to uni, and becomes a successful businessman.
2007 - Billy's dad is arrested for child abuse.  Billy removed to foster care and joins a gang.  Psychologist tells Billy's sister that she remembers being abused herself and their Dad goes to prison.  Billy's Mum has affair with psychologist.

Situation:  Mark gets a headache and takes some aspirin to school.
1957 -
Mark shares aspirin with teacher.
2007 - Police called, Mark expelled from school for drug violations. Car searched for drugs and weapons.

Situation:  Sione fails high school English.
1957 - Sione gets extra tuition, passes English, goes to Uni.
2007 - Sione's cause is taken up by counsellors.  Newspaper articles appear nationally explaining that teaching English as a requirement for graduation is racist.  Class action lawsuit filed by John Minto against Ministry and Sione's English teacher. English banned from core curriculum. Sione given NZQA unit papers anyway for effort and hurt feelings, and ends up mowing lawns for a living because he cannot speak English.

Situation:  Johnny takes apart leftover firecrackers, puts them in a model aeroplane paint bottle, and blows up an ant bed.
1957 - Ants die.
2007 - Local police & noise control called. Johnny charged with  domestic terrorism, parents investigated, siblings removed from home, computers confiscated, Johnny's Dad goes on a terror watch list and is never allowed to fly again.

Situation:  Johnny falls while running during morning tea and scrapes his knee. He is found crying by his teacher, Mary.  Mary hugs him to comfort him.
1957 - In a short time, Johnny feels better and goes on playing.2007 - Mary is accused of being a sexual predator and loses her job. She faces 3 years in prison while Johnny undergoes 5 years of therapy.


** In 1957 the novel Atlas Shrugged was published.  It became a best-seller, was found in a Library of Congress survey to be the second most influential book in America after The Bible, and was recently described by The New York Times as "One of the most influential business books ever written." 

** In 2007 the best-seller was a recommendation from Oprah's book club about the author's "year-long search for spiritual meaning."

Atlas Shrugged
by Ayn Rand

Read more about this book...


  1. 1957 - Sione gets extra tuition, passes English, goes to Uni.

    There was no Uni in 1957 in Tonga by then. The only one who was in NZ in 1960s was the well known ukulele man, Sione 'Aleki. Watch him playing ukulele here on YouTube:

    Sione Aleki, Tonga

    I am pretty much sure that Sione 'Aleki, didn't go to University here in NZ during the 1960s.

  2. The most startling aspect for me regarding this (SUPERB article) is there is absolutely no exaggeration!!

    How many writers can make such a powerful statement without the use of exaggeration to drive home the point?

    I vote this be included in your "hall of fame" album of Not PC posts.

  3. Wow, so it all went downhill with the publication of Atlas Shrugged?

  4. You know what they say about confusing correlation with causality, Zen. ;^)

  5. Yes, this is one of the best ever articles on Not PC!!

    Gosh! this is amazing Peter..well done!

  6. It's posted under Humour, but sadly it's more like reality.

    I agree with zentiger, who knew that Atlas Shrugged had such an impact :)

  7. Here's one for you (it actually occured between two student from different schools, one of them mine and the other I went to last year):

    A student holds a knife to the neck of a student from another school after fighting.

    1957: Paddled by headmaster, expelled on the spot, parents notified and pull him out of education to do hard labour in the workforce. Boy goes to juvenile jail for several years.

    2007: Police called, but no one charged. Student suspended, but only for a week. The other child goes home at lunchtime.

  8. And in the "what a coincidence" department:

  9. Would like to add this wee gem to the list.

    A police investigation to prosecute a 12-year-old for throwing a cocktail sausage at a neighbour has cost £20,000.

    The youngster was charged with common assault and brought before magistrates six times after the case was repeatedly adjourned to allow reports to be prepared.

    Greater Manchester Police yesterday dropped all charges against the boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, after he was diagnosed as suffering from attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder.


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