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  #1  
Old 11-06-2018, 07:02 PM
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Teacher assaults student that uses a racial slur against him

https://www.washingtonpost.com/educa...=.3a430442f6d9

So, in Maywood Academy High School in Maywood, CA, south of Los Angeles, a well respected African American music teacher, Marston Riley, asked a male student that was not dressed in accordance with the school's dress code policy leave his classroom. The student refused to leave the classroom, threw a baseball at the teacher and yelled. "Why you wisecracking, my n-----?

What would you have done at this point if you were a high school teacher?

Well, Mr. Riley. decided to hand out his own punishment. First he called for back-up and then proceeded to lay down a whoop-ass beatin' on that poor boy.

As with anything in this day, there are multiple video accounts of the beat down. The kid was taken to a local hospital and the teacher was arrested for child abuse. The school is considering dismissing the teacher.

But wait there's more. Some sympathetic members of the community started a go-fund me campaign and have raised over $85,000 for the teacher to be used for his legal defense and to help him if he gets fired by the school. Some of those donating said they don't necessarily agree with teachers beating up students, but they definitely don't agree with racial slurs being used against teachers.

So my question is: Is violence justified against hate speech?

I don't think so. Mr. Riley did not act appropriately, and defending himself against hate speech is not justified. He is the adult and should act like one. He should face the consequences of his actions, whatever his employer and community decide.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:08 PM
DavidwithanR DavidwithanR is offline
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I don't think he was right to get violent.

Was it somehow strategically right, in the broader scheme of the world? Is it necessary somehow that racists learn you will end up in hospital for being racist? I can't say.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:13 PM
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Two wrongs don't make a right

BUT

the teacher was 64 years old, and he beat up a teenager!

People on other boards have been blaming cell phones, video games, even MTV for this (when's the last time you heard of THAT being blamed for wayward youth?) but this was a class for "troubled kids" in the first place, and many of those youngsters have been through things many of us could never imagine. These are not just kids who have, for instance, divorced parents or even alcoholic parents; these are kids who were born addicted to drugs, their "parents" are in and out of prison, they live with relatives who don't want them and are no better, etc.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:17 PM
Asuka Asuka is offline
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I like how we're at a point where a grown man beating up a 14 year old boy is being asked if it's justified.

We're going down the same path when that pro-Israeli reporter got sexually assaulted by Palestinian protestors and people on message boards were claiming she deserved it for not being sympathetic to their plight.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:19 PM
nearwildheaven nearwildheaven is offline
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I like how we're at a point where a grown man beating up a 14 year old boy is being asked if it's justified.
Far too many people think that if teachers COULD do this, all of society's problems would disappear overnight.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:23 PM
jackdavinci jackdavinci is offline
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I think generally the trend in our culture has been away from taking the idea of integrity as something that can be damaged by third parties so seriously, and also towards the idea of proportionality and heirarchy of attack such that verbal fights should stay on that level or higher and not be met with physical responses.

So usually I would say, nothing a person says except physical threat should be met with a physical response. That's kind of the whole point of the marketplace of ideas and so forth.

This specific incident is a little muddled of course by two things

1) the baseball being thrown is actually kind of a bigger deal than the N word. Even so, the response was no where near proportional.

2) This was both a professional environment, in which procedures should be followed, and also a situation with great disparity of position, and also complicated by being in loco with possible conflict of interest with the parents.

So what should happen here is a different issue that if it was just the N word and not also the baseball, and also if was a different environment, or between peers.

Also "my N" while still frowned upon in many contexts, while offensive in a different way, isn't quite the insult the regular N word is.

Last edited by jackdavinci; 11-06-2018 at 07:23 PM.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:27 PM
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IMHO, only one of the two is at risk for a repeat of this kind of incident, and it isn't Mr. Riley.

Last edited by Snowboarder Bo; 11-06-2018 at 07:27 PM. Reason: kind of
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:40 PM
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He should face the consequences of his actions, whatever his employer and community decide.

And whatever the criminal justice system decides, since I'm assuming that assaulting a minor is a prison-worthy crime.
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Old 11-06-2018, 08:09 PM
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I think generally the trend in our culture has been away from taking the idea of integrity as something that can be damaged by third parties so seriously, and also towards the idea of proportionality and heirarchy of attack such that verbal fights should stay on that level or higher and not be met with physical responses.

So usually I would say, nothing a person says except physical threat should be met with a physical response. That's kind of the whole point of the marketplace of ideas and so forth.

This specific incident is a little muddled of course by two things

1) the baseball being thrown is actually kind of a bigger deal than the N word. Even so, the response was no where near proportional.

2) This was both a professional environment, in which procedures should be followed, and also a situation with great disparity of position, and also complicated by being in loco with possible conflict of interest with the parents.

So what should happen here is a different issue that if it was just the N word and not also the baseball, and also if was a different environment, or between peers.

Also "my N" while still frowned upon in many contexts, while offensive in a different way, isn't quite the insult the regular N word is.
The article in the OP says that the student threw a basketball at the teacher. Presumably, a basketball is less likely to cause serious injury.
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Old 11-06-2018, 08:36 PM
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But wait there's more. Some sympathetic members of the community started a go-fund me campaign and have raised over $85,000 for the teacher to be used for his legal defense and to help him if he gets fired by the school. Some of those donating said they don't necessarily agree with teachers beating up students, but they definitely don't agree with racial slurs being used against teachers.
That's a telling quote. Are we at the point where some people think that the only reaction to a slur is violence? The kid is probably getting more sympathy now than if he was dragged off to detention for the rest of his natural life.
I wonder how the teacher's supporters would feel if a cop did this kind of thing. Or even a standup comic beating up a heckler.
I wouldn't want a teacher who loses it in my kids' school, that's for sure.
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:06 PM
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I like how we're at a point where a grown man beating up a 14 year old boy is being asked if it's justified.
As nearwildheaven pointed out, this is actually a much less draconian attitude than prevailed fairly recently. Corporal punishment for "troublemakers", especially ones who got physically aggressive in any way with teachers, was formerly such a routine feature of schools that a grown-man teacher beating up a 14-year-old boy would be automatically assumed to be justified.
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:09 PM
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As nearwildheaven pointed out, this is actually a much less draconian attitude than prevailed fairly recently. Corporal punishment for "troublemakers", especially ones who got physically aggressive in any way with teachers, was formerly such a routine feature of schools that a grown-man teacher beating up a 14-year-old boy would be automatically assumed to be justified.
Correct me if I'm wrong but corporal punishment wasnt just wildly beating students with your fists right? They had to have certain rules and guidelines to both make it seem legit and also to teach other students a lesson.
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:21 PM
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Correct me if I'm wrong but corporal punishment wasnt just wildly beating students with your fists right? They had to have certain rules and guidelines [...]
The format of school corporal punishment nowadays is pretty regulated AFAICT (though that doesn't necessarily mean it can't be excessive and/or abusive). But not so long ago it was more no-holds-barred, especially if it was "provoked" by a student physically assaulting a teacher in some way.
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:38 PM
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The student was wrong to throw the baseball and probably should be charged with assault.

This does not excuse the teachers assault on the student. He clearly acted in an immature and unprofessional manner and should be disciplined.

There is no doubt that these two have a history. However, the school and the teacher are clearly not doing their professional duty in allowing a situation like this to keep spiralling out of control.

Another issue is why the hell does this school allow to students to have cell phones in class. The bloody things should be seized at the door.
  #15  
Old 11-06-2018, 09:38 PM
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This teacher lost control of himself, pure and simple. He lost control and reacted violently and way out of proportion to what was not ever a real threat to his physical safety. He was a vigilante in this situation and should be held to account. Expel the student, sure, but also fire the teacher. If I was a parent I would not want my child in this teacher's classroom, if for no other reason the example he set that said the proper way to handle provocation is violence. It never is.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:00 PM
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One thing that's pissing me off about this incident is how I see it reported. The word used by Spanish newspapers (and they all report from the same agency using the same word, so I guess the translation is in the original) falls under "slang but not a slur". Negrata means "big black dude"; it doesn't mean "black person I want to insult". But then, in Spain 99% of what makes a racial slur a slur is tone of voice. If you don't have a way to translate a word, explain it instead, damnit; among other things, this counts as a PSA to your readers who can then file this explained word under "do not use unless you want to get in trouble". This PSA has been adressed to anybody from AP who may encounter it, thank you for reading!
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:11 PM
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I'm actually confused. Is saying "my n...." the same as saying "n...."? I thought the former was friendly-ish? Or should a white person never say either (I think this is probably the correct answer but not sure).
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:17 PM
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I think the difference between "nigga" and "my nigga" is trivial in this circumstance. The student certainly wasn't saying it in a friendly way.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:23 PM
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Teachers can't hit students. Period. Full Stop.

Old dude should be facing jail time.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:27 PM
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I think the difference between "nigga" and "my nigga" is trivial in this circumstance. The student certainly wasn't saying it in a friendly way.
Yeah, I guess I can see that. Thanks.
  #21  
Old 11-06-2018, 10:45 PM
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Teachers can't hit students. Period. Full Stop.

Old dude should be facing jail time.
Yep,. Used to be somewhat normal from the stories I hear. Im glad were in a place where this shit is (mostly) not tolerated.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:52 PM
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Good. Beat the little shit to death. One less fucking racist in the world.
  #23  
Old 11-06-2018, 11:03 PM
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Guy should be thrown in prison and the key thrown away.
What the actual fuck?
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Old 11-06-2018, 11:04 PM
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Teachers should not be hitting students. Especially in a case like this, where the teacher apparently paused between the inciting incident and when he began hitting the students. This, to me, shows that the teacher didn't just "snap".

That said, the student was also very wrong. He threw something at a teacher, he seriously insulted him, and he was generally disruptive and disrespectful.

The teacher should have reported the student and the student should have immediately been removed from class, to be followed up with a prolonged suspension.

At this point, given what actually happened, the teacher should also be looking at a prolonged suspension.

Whether either punishment should go further, with the student being expelled or the teacher being fired, would involve knowing more information that I don't have.
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Old 11-06-2018, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Kimstu View Post
As nearwildheaven pointed out, this is actually a much less draconian attitude than prevailed fairly recently. Corporal punishment for "troublemakers", especially ones who got physically aggressive in any way with teachers, was formerly such a routine feature of schools that a grown-man teacher beating up a 14-year-old boy would be automatically assumed to be justified.
I went to parochial school including high school in the Bronx in the 1950s and 1960s. Corporal punishment, particularly by the Christian Brothers who ran my high school, was standard and accepted. But it consisted of maybe a smack in the back of the head to a kid who wasn't paying attention in class, or for more serious offenses, a whack with a paddle on the butt.

But an adult teacher beating up a 14-year-old kid in this fashion would not have been "routine" in any circumstances. Putting a kid in the hospital for throwing a baseball would have been way, way off the charts. I'm sure a lay teacher would have been fired for such a thing, and I'm pretty sure even a brother would have been removed from the staff.

Corporal punishment is different from beating someone up. Even fifty years ago something like what is described in the OP would have been beyond the pale.

Last edited by Colibri; 11-06-2018 at 11:49 PM.
  #26  
Old 11-07-2018, 12:12 AM
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Teachers can't hit students. Period. Full Stop.

Old dude should be facing jail time.

Yes. The kid should have to apoligize to the teacher, and the teacher should spend a couple of years in prison.
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Old 11-07-2018, 12:33 AM
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Correct me if I'm wrong but corporal punishment wasnt just wildly beating students with your fists right? They had to have certain rules and guidelines to both make it seem legit and also to teach other students a lesson.
Corporal punishment is illegal in California. California Education Code 49001
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Old 11-07-2018, 12:54 AM
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The student was wrong to throw the baseball and probably should be charged with assault.
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But an adult teacher beating up a 14-year-old kid in this fashion would not have been "routine" in any circumstances. Putting a kid in the hospital for throwing a baseball would have been way, way off the charts.
The kid threw a basketball.

Quote:
Originally Posted by the WaPo
A cellphone video shows the teenager refusing, then throwing a basketball at the teacher
https://www.washingtonpost.com/educa...=.d55eddba6c83
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Old 11-07-2018, 01:07 AM
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This is a situation where IMO both participants are blatantly in the wrong.

I do admit that I feel some sort of satisfaction that a racist little shit was pasted to the floor for being racist, but at the same time, by his TEACHER? That's very wrong. I have no clue what ought to be done, but I do think the decision has to take into account its own potential later ramifications.
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Old 11-07-2018, 02:22 AM
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I like how we're at a point where a grown man beating up a 14 year old boy is being asked if it's justified.

We're going down the same path when that pro-Israeli reporter got sexually assaulted by Palestinian protestors and people on message boards were claiming she deserved it for not being sympathetic to their plight.
If you're throwing baseballs, you started it. I cannot condone the teacher's actions, but I hope the youth learned a valuable lesson, as well - don't start shit if you can't finish it.
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Old 11-07-2018, 02:47 AM
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Sounds like this wasn't his first incident with students. They think it was a set up to get him fired.
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Old 11-07-2018, 03:25 AM
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...I hope the youth learned a valuable lesson, as well - don't start shit if you can't finish it.
You think we should be teaching kids that violence is okay provided you follow through and finish the other guy off?
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Old 11-07-2018, 04:33 AM
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Violence is never the answer. Beyond that, I mean, I understand "fighting words" - I'd be more sympathetic if this happened in e.g. a bar - but this was way over any line. Teachers act in loco parentis, there's never any call for a teacher to hit a student in lieu of discipline.

This doesn't mean the student shouldn't also be expelled, regardless of any consequences for the teacher, though.
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Old 11-07-2018, 04:39 AM
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You think we should be teaching kids that violence is okay provided you follow through and finish the other guy off?
That's quite the non-sequitur you've posted; congratulations!

It is possible for the teacher's violent reaction to have been wrong AND to have provided a valuable lesson to the young man about what violence, that he sought to provoke, can be like: sudden, brutal and not at all pleasant.
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Old 11-07-2018, 04:39 AM
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What the student said is irrelevant, the throwing of the basketball (at the teachers legs) is irrelevant.
The correct response to any of the above is not, "punch 14 year boy in the face repeatedly, drag him to the ground and kick him"

It is clearly a violent assault on a child and should be prosecuted as such. The 14 year should be subjected to whatever sanctions the school has at its disposal but the blame for the violence is 100% on the adult, "professional" teacher.
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Old 11-07-2018, 04:40 AM
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That's quite the non-sequitur you've posted; congratulations!

It is possible for the teacher's violent reaction to have been wrong AND to have provided a valuable lesson to the young man about what violence, that he sought to provoke, can be like: sudden, brutal and not at all pleasant.
You're right they should have tied the kid to the desk and sodomized him with a plunger to teach him a lesson.
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Old 11-07-2018, 04:42 AM
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You're right they should have tied the kid to the desk and sodomized him with a plunger to teach him a lesson.
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Old 11-07-2018, 05:11 AM
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Violence is never the answer. Beyond that, I mean, I understand "fighting words" - I'd be more sympathetic if this happened in e.g. a bar - but this was way over any line. Teachers act in loco parentis, there's never any call for a teacher to hit a student in lieu of discipline.
It it was a Bar, I would say the fucker deserved the ass kicking he got. But this, its literally the teachers job description to teach juveniles how to act in society. If the students are acting basely, its the teachers fault.
No matter how much posters like Kimstu and Snowboarder Bo might try to find excuses.
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This doesn't mean the student shouldn't also be expelled, regardless of any consequences for the teacher, though.
Normal school disciplinary actions should be taken.

Last edited by AK84; 11-07-2018 at 05:14 AM.
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Old 11-07-2018, 06:55 AM
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Normal school disciplinary actions should be taken.
Sure, maybe suspension, but I'm assuming unambiguous assault and racist language is an expulsion-level offence, of course (here, the latter would be outright criminal)
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:18 AM
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The baseball/basketball distinction is very important. If it had been a baseball, then we're potentially talking about lethal force. And it's well-established in law and society that if someone, anyone, uses lethal force against you, any force you use in response is justified.

A basketball wouldn't be lethal force, and so some proportionality is required in the response. But it's still assault. Did the teacher reasonably believe that the assault consisted entirely of the thrown ball, or that the student was going to continue?
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:26 AM
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Fire the coach but no jail time.

Kid also got exactly what he deserved.
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:34 AM
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Not remotely appropriate, and the teacher reacted far out of proportion to the offense. Firing? Jail time? Not sure without more detail and consideration, but it's certainly not excusable unless it transpires that he was actively defending himself, which does not appear to be the case.

That said, my sympathy for the kid is highly limited. He shouldn't have received a beatdown but sometimes when you poke a bear it bites your face off.
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:51 AM
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Yes, as a former teacher I can say no matter what, you cant touch a kid. Although a teacher is allowed to defend themselves. I have known teachers fired for this.

The correct thing for the teacher to do was write the kid up and hopefully and I really mean "hopefully", the school will come down hard on the kid. Not just something lame like 3 days in ISS which they dont even have to do or the kid just gets transferred to another class. Heck, I've even seen them supposedly suspending the kid, then you notice they transferred him to another school and altered his grades so they now passed all their courses.



The other kids find out and do the same.
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:55 AM
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I find it a little worrying to hear so many people reacting to this beating with such barely concealed pleasure.

Verbal abuse and the throwing of a ball cannot ever mean that someone "deserves" a beating by a teacher. It was a 14 year-old boy. A child. Change the gender, knock a year off...at what point would you start thinking "actually...no, that isn't OK" ?

One hopes those people aren't the same ones eager to arm teachers.
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Old 11-07-2018, 08:00 AM
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Expel the kid, fire the teacher.
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Old 11-07-2018, 08:02 AM
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What would you have done at this point if you were a high school teacher?
I would have done what I actually did do. I took all the crap that comes with teaching in 21st century America and then got out of teaching as soon as it was humanly possible for me to do so. Judging from the teacher numbers in Illinois, more and more people agree with me or have decided not to even get into the profession to begin with.

Of course I do not agree with assault and battery as a disciplinary measure but, in all honesty, I'm amazed that a lot more teachers don't crack under the constant pressure and abuse that comes with being a classroom.

Furthermore, I believe that we are doing our youth a great disservice by pretty much tolerating anything they do (behavior) and anything they don't do (learning) without making them accountable. We are teaching them from Pre-K through 12th grade that they aren't responsible for anything and anything that goes wrong with them in school is pretty much anybody's fault except theirs. After all of that, we somehow expect them to be responsible adults when they leave system.
  #47  
Old 11-07-2018, 08:22 AM
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You're right they should have tied the kid to the desk and sodomized him with a plunger to teach him a lesson.
Knock it off. Not an appropriate attribution, even sarcastically.
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Old 11-07-2018, 08:29 AM
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I find it a little worrying to hear so many people reacting to this beating with such barely concealed pleasure.

Verbal abuse and the throwing of a ball cannot ever mean that someone "deserves" a beating by a teacher. It was a 14 year-old boy. A child. Change the gender, knock a year off...at what point would you start thinking "actually...no, that isn't OK" ?

One hopes those people aren't the same ones eager to arm teachers.

Have you not been on this board for nearly 9 years and have you not seen which poster are here?
  #49  
Old 11-07-2018, 08:35 AM
Chingon Chingon is online now
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If this was Florida, the kid would be qualified to be the governor now.
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Children need encouragement. If a kid gets an answer right, tell him it was a lucky guess. That way he develops a good, lucky feeling.

Last edited by Chingon; 11-07-2018 at 08:36 AM.
  #50  
Old 11-07-2018, 09:30 AM
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manson1972 manson1972 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grrr! View Post
Fire the coach but no jail time.

Kid also got exactly what he deserved.
If your kid threw a basketball at your legs and called you names, do you think he would deserve a punch to the face?
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