Well the month of June has been deliriously short. It is already almost over and I feel as if I haven’t yet had my fill. School has been rolling along at a break-neck pace and my final exams are just around the bend. I haven’t even figured out who I hate and who I sort of don’t detest yet. These mini summer sessions don’t allow the prerequisite time to form those important bonds that, as people keep reminding me, last a lifetime. If I have to associate with the people at Montgomery college for the rest of my life I may just end it all here and now. For example, an anecdote and moral for you all to enjoy.
It was a warm and lovely afternoon about two weeks ago. I was sitting down to what should have been a very interesting History class. That day the discussion was about the role of the supreme court as interpreted by Marshall in the Marbury v. Madison case and it’s apposing argument in the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions. Now if you know me well, you know I love me some activist courts (read: Warren). However I know full well that the argument is better for no judicial review. A great contradiction in our system but anyway. I was hoping for a bit of lively debate. If not with my fellow peers than at least with the teacher, who surprisingly hates all Federal control. So as he launched into the lecture portion of the class the eyes began to glaze. I could see it begin in the back and reach farther up like some virulent form of the bird flu that spreads via political theory being espoused. As the topic turned to the difference between the Federalists and the National Democrats a lone girl raised her hand. I was suitably impressed. Had she managed to hold on. Would see seek to delve into the grand divide of who in fact should govern? Or maybe, on and even deeper level question the very nature of power and it’s implementation as Madison did in Federalist 10? I awaited the question on bated breath (read the cute girl in class might actually be kind of smart…yay!). Finally the instructor acknowledged her. And she asked, and I quote, “Who is John Adams, I’ve never heard of him?”
The teacher went on to explain Adams’ role in the founding of our county…again, and launched back into the regular lecture. He didn’t even flinch or make a face. As if it was nothing, he went plodding along. I sat in shock. Disbelieving that she had said those words. This girl’s first language was English, so there was no cultural divide to play it off. She was rich (a Louis Vinton handbag) so she at least went to a decent public school(though going to a bad one shouldn’t be an excuse) maybe even a private school. Her stupidity baffled me utterly. John Adams is not the most important figure in History. That is to be sure. I don’t even like him all that much. But to have never even heard of him before? It made me sad. This was not the girls fault. The education system had fail her. She would be doomed to her ignorance, never knowing our second president well or the fact that she was woefully unprepared to have a conversation much less work in the fields of the Humanities (I learned latter she was a history major).
As I sat at my desk reflecting over this statement and its impact on me (missing completely the debate of judicial review) I was given new resolve. This would not happen to anyone else. Then I realized that was almost as dumb as what that poor girl had just said. So I made a new resolve. To be a teacher and not let anyone fall through the cracks. I had already made this resolve, so in another augmentation I decided that for a time at least I would teach in the public school system. I realize that my naïveté and energetic approach will quickly vanish in the face of drastic poverty, ignorance, and lethargy, but if I can shape one mind, give one person the gift that I was given (a good education), teach one person who John Adams is before college for God’s Sake, I think I will have made a deference. As Shah would say “affect society for the better.” This may be my elitist brand of socialism but I think I just might pull it off.
Okay rant complete. I hope you enjoyed it. So on to the more pressing matters at hand. Shah is leaving me forever tomorrow. He sets out on a new chapter in the ever fascinating book that is his life, that I have titled “The Bengali Tiger: Brown-skinned and Loving It (An American Tale)” That’s the working title anyway. I love you brother. Have a great time and I’ll hopefully see you again soon. Socially the past few days have been interesting. We went to a party at Ricardo’s house on Friday evening. It was great, I got to play a little Winning Eleven, and drink a bit too much. There was also a two hour conversation with Mike and Shah consecutively about the art movement we started, DAMO, and our theories about art in general. No consensus was reached, which is sort of predictably DAMO. See the links in the previous posts comment section for their interpretations. I’ll give you all mine just as soon as I figure them out exactly. Anyway I’m looking forward to my first weekend in a post-Shah world. Mike and I should be heading up to “The Reading City” some time this weekend to allow me to connect all the stories to some faces. Otherwise it’s a world-cup filled week, which will hopefully allow me to see a few interesting games. Now on to homework and a little light MySpace stalking…
Listening to Kyrie by Flowers In The Attic and Kyrie (from the Requiem Mass) by Mozart (oddly they sound nothing alike…)