This has a nice 1984 quality to it, don’t you think?

What a creepy story.  What’s going on in your children’s schools?

Home schooling more and more seems like the best option remaining.

From Truth Revolt:

A 13-year-old boy from New Jersey was suspended from school for two days last week and forced to undergo a five-hour long physical and psychological evaluation after another student accused him of making “gun motions” with a pencil.

The seventh-grader said he was simply twirling a pencil with a pen cap on the end but another student, who was bullying him earlier in the day, yelled out, “He’s making gun motions, send him to juvie.

A New Jersey News 12 story was posted to YouTube by the child’s father recounting the ordeal. In it, a reporter called the Vernon Schools Superintendent, Charles Maranzano, who justified the school’s overreaching tactics:

We never know what’s percolating in the mind of children, okay, and when they demonstrate behaviors that raise red flags, we must do our duty.

The father said he was completely floored at how far the school went in its disciplinary actions:

I’m absolutely livid. I think it’s gross misconduct at its finest. They took something so minimal and took it so far over the edge.

The boy, who shows visible bruising from the blood tests, said school administrators never once listened to his side of the story:

I was shocked because I’m like, how am I not going to come back to school? I didn’t even do anything.

The boy was told he could return to school on Monday pending the results of the psychological evaluation, which the report says came out “clean.”

It is as if we have gone completely mad.

Actually, not “as if”.  We have gone mad.

One of my philosophy profs once remarked that an insane mind produces false results.  But if nearly everything that goes into the mind is twisted and artificial, then the mind must produce false results.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. ReginaMarie says:

    Whacked-out, for sure…but no real surprise. My friend pulled her 3 children out of elementary school several years ago because of the psychological exams being done on all of the children…even those who didn’t twirl their pencils with pen caps. That, along with the library books her children brought home which promoted & celebrated “alternative” lifestyles, was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

    And now we hear of 20 students at a Pittsburgh high school being stabbed this morning! Lord, have mercy!

    Thank God for the (relative) freedom to homeschool (at least for now…)!

  2. Legisperitus says:

    Garbage in, garbage out.

    Without the rock of Divine Revelation to anchor it, the mind just swirls around senselessly in the storm.

  3. Clinton says:

    Most folks overlook them, but school board elections do matter.

  4. iPadre says:

    The lunatics are running the asylum!

  5. moon1234 says:

    Or find a good private Catholic school, like St. Ambrose Academy in Madison, WI. [Fantastic school!] You won’t need to worry about teachers and students over-reacting. If problems ever crop up parents are called immediately and the problem dealt with in a normal, civilized manner.

    Public schools today are treated, run and even look like prisons. Think about it. Most public schools have police/security IN the school (prison guards), any behavior outside of the rules is treated with the harshest response (solitary confinement) and the people running the place have less than normal IQ and rationality scores.

    Public schools today are indoctrination camps in most places. They program your child to believe what the corrupt elements of government want them to believe. I am constant surprised when parents are “Shocked”, “Stunned”, etc. by what happens to their kids in public school.

    I left public education in 1996. During my tenure in “school”, most boys carried pocket knives, All of the students in “Outdoor Science” class were allowed to bring hunting rifles to school for demonstration. There relatively few fights and those that did occur were broken up by male teachers and the students parents called. Kids smoked in front of the school building with teachers bumming cigarettes from the students. The campus was open and most with the ability left for lunch period.

    That was just 17 years ago. When my parents were in high school my Dad said they would sometimes go to the bar for a burger and beer during lunch period, and it was legal!

  6. acardnal says:

    I grew up playing “cowboys & Indians” and “cops & robbers”. I guess I’d be expelled in today’s world.

    [It’s not to late to be expelled, if people like AG Holder and Gov. Cuomo get their way.]

  7. mamajen says:

    My five-year-old son happily pretends to shoot “bad guys” during recess with no incident. He is a little confused and says he is shooting cannons, because the only weaponry he has heard about at home are cannons (he has toy pirate ships). One of his friends has discussed hunting during show-and-tell and brought in an action figure that had hunting gear. Every school is different. I’m not particularly thrilled that my son has learned about shooting at people thanks to other kids who are allowed to watch TV/movies or play video games that we don’t do (it was cousins before classmates), but I’m glad we have sensible people in charge at our school.

  8. BLB Oregon says:

    That this could even happen is outrageous, but something tells me this may be a perfect storm, too. The expelled boy contended in a news story that the “informant” has a history of bullying him. It is possible the teacher has taken sides in a social conflict, at the expelled boy’s expense. It would not be the first time that this kind of ridiculous injustice came about because the authority figure was either prejudiced against one charge or essentially allowed himself/herself to be held hostage by a bad apple, making the bad apple’s choice of victim into the scapegoat in order to “keep the peace”.

    There is a big push in some schools to use the classroom as a platform from which to “change public consciousness,” which is to say to make them into brainwashing academies.

  9. RANCHER says:

    In today’s environment you’d be luck to just be expelled. They would probably claim you came from an unfit home and the state would take custody away from your parents, you would be subjected to testing, and perhaps incarcerated to “send a message” to other students.

    The current insanity will continue unless/until we expel from public office those whose “god” is feeling good about themselves rather than true faith in our real God. I fear this country has reached the point of no return and must be destroyed before it can be rebuilt.

  10. Hans says:

    ‘Twas ever thus with bullies. They play to the adults so they can get away with tormenting their peers. I experienced it in the early ’70s, even. I was the frequent target of bullies in grade school, and then I would get blamed for causing problems by the teachers, who listened to the bullies (and their parents) and not me. It went on like that until one of our few remaining religious sisters decided to pay attention to the whole process instead of just the end. She saw me repeatedly being the subject of unprovoked attacks (frequently literally) and simply defending myself, but even then it was an uphill battle to convince the adults (including the school administration) who were used to listening to the bullies.

  11. Adam Welp says:

    I’m at work and the news story is firewalled. Did the child’s parents give consent to the testing? If not, I wonder if the school corporation has opened itself up to a rather large lawsuit. Anyone that attempted to take a blood draw from my kids without my approval would find themselves on the other end of my fist or the business end of a Louisville Slugger! We still have rights, and the last time I checked, the Czar in Chief has not signed an Executive Order nullifying the 4th Amendment.

  12. ReginaMarie says:

    BLB Oregon: Public school classrooms have long been consciousness-changing, brainwashing academies…this is nothing new. I could see this when I was in public school…andI graduated from high school waaay back in ’88. Common Core is just another example of this ongoing trend. Government-run, compulsory indoctrination centers…I mean public schools…are a failed experiment. Most parents are clueless of the filth going on inside those walls (whether it come from teachers, curriculum, or other students). Unfortunately mine were. It is time for more parents to opt-out & take charge.

  13. HeatherPA says:

    In rural PA, my son took the empty spent shells from his first deer kill to school for share time last fall. Hunting and fishing are huge here. I can’t imagine how that would have went over at most of these ultra PC schools. Definite expulsion, probably police involvement.

  14. Sonshine135 says:

    Public Schools were never designed as centers of critical thinking. At their best, they were designed to educate the populous only enough to function as good little workers. At their worst, they are mindless indoctrination centers that teach children mindlessly indoctrination. Critical thinking and objective morality leads people to responsibility and self-sufficiency. We can be having any of that now can we?

  15. Sword40 says:

    I know of a High School, in the state of _______, that has a huge figure of a cowboy with 2 six guns, in the school foyer. Its their mascot. I would hate to be the person or group that even attempted to have that removed. Some folks just don’t take to others messing with their traditions.

  16. MikeM221 says:

    I was a child during the ’60s, and all of my friends and I had toy guns with which we played cops and robbers, cowboys and Indians, and soldiers. Yet horrific mass shootings in schools, malls or the workplace were virtually unheard of until the last few decades.

    Today, we discipline and psychologically evaluate kids for making a “gun” with their fingers or a pencil, and parents wouldn’t think of letting their kids have toy guns. Yet tragedies like Sandy Hook have become commonplace.

    So is the problem toy/play guns or something else, like a complete disrespect for human life? I would suggest the latter.

  17. LarryW2LJ says:

    But yet, as a society, we are perfectly fine with the slaughtering of innocents in the womb, each and every day. What an upside down world.

  18. Nicholas Shaler says:

    And here at my school I have some friends who talk about guns (real guns! scary!) at lunch. Glad I’m at a Catholic High School.

    Compare that to my public California elementary school where we were not aloud to run at Recess. A rule which my mom so resented that she told me to disobey it and run around anyway. She managed to convince school leadership to let us run.

    Moral of the story: if there is a bad rule, try to get it changed, you might succeed.

  19. Chon says:

    Parents aren’t the only adults shocked at what public “education” has become. I taught public high school biology in the 70’s; there was a unified and reasonably rigorous curriculum, an administration that believed in appropriate discipline, and sane parents. I stopped teaching to do many other things. Then, in the 21st century, I returned as a sixth grade science and math teacher. The curriculum was disjointed, many children were shockingly deficient in arithmetic and reading skills, discipline was frowned upon by the administration, disruptive children seemed to become the principal’s pets, and parents were very permissive and difficult to deal with.

    One quarter I had to teach a class where we spent 40 minutes a day play-acting endless variations of ways to say “no” to drugs. It was mind-bogglingly boring.

    Also boring was the silly M.S. in education program I completed at the local university about ten years ago. We had no tests, not even at the end of the program. We were never asked to think or evaluate any ideas or theories of education. The whole program was pure liberal indoctrination. I felt like I was in Soviet Russia. I feel like that in the schools, too. That’s why I resigned.

    I can see why the children misbehave in this system. They are bored, they don’t like chaos in the classroom, and their burning questions about God are not being addressed. (I have also worked in grades 3-5). I find that most children are extremely interested in God. Whenever I would find a way to sneak in some information about God, the children became alert and the classroom was silent as still pond on a lovely day in June.

  20. Charles E Flynn says:

    If you would like to be cheered up, click the link to St. Ambrose Academy that moon1234 posted above, and then click the red “Classical” link.

  21. scholastica says:

    About 10 years ago, I had my children on the playground with other homeschool families after completing a weekly holy hour. It was a fine day and the boys were all running around with their wooden swords being boys. A teacher at the parish school came out and reprimanded the children and parents for this inappropriate behavior and required them to put the swords away lest the catholic school children see them. So, clearly the children of America have been indoctrinated to accept homosexuality and just about any other sexual perversion as normal, to shun the use or mention of guns (ie. self defense), and now to accept any treatment by an authority as just. It won’t be long before the government comes knocking at our door to investigate us for any minor complaint of another. Of course this has been done already in Nazi Germany. God save us all!
    After reading this day’s posts I am once again so very thankful that the Lord called me to homeschool, though I didn’t fully understand it at the time and often doubted along the way.

  22. BLB Oregon says:

    “BLB Oregon: Public school classrooms have long been consciousness-changing, brainwashing academies…this is nothing new.”

    Do not get me wrong. I have no doubt that the first public schools in the US fully intended to turn out good Protestants. I only meant that there are cases of social tinkering and then there are local situations where the goal of indoctrination reaches exceptional extremes.

    Besides, what happened when schools pretended to “teach no values” but made the pretense that they could be equally permissive of every kind of social habit? Those schools were quite possibly the worst of all!

  23. jeffcassman says:

    Catholic parents should have their children in government schools only as a last result, and then both anticipate these kinds of problems and prepare their children, in prudence, to avoid them, or if failing that, to respond appropriately. It is no different than dealing with TSA officials at the airport; if you wish to participate in their system, you must consent to all they require, however much you ‘wish’ it were otherwise. It is illogical to participate in their system without becoming inextricably a part of-and infected by-it.

  24. jbas says:

    In the rural US South, we experience guns as part of father-to-son rites of passage. For us, guns represent responsibility, courage, patience and other family and civic virtues. And for us, fear of the “gun cultures” means fear of family life, fear of neighborhoods, and fear of the human person. The state is teaching the poor child in this story to fear himself and his fellow man, trusting only in the state.

  25. Vecchio di Londra says:

    I suggest the following general hypothesis:
    As long as the Soviet Union existed, as long as the Chinese Cultural Revolution’s effects were still alive, as long as Eastern Europe was run by Communist totalitarians, we had the appalling reported examples in front of us of what state control could do when taken too far – by our enemies. We also still read Orwell and remembered WWII.
    Once the USSR collapsed, China’s dictatorship covered itself up, Eastern Europe turned from collectivised poverty to individualist greed, and there was no more bogey man, western state governments, (national, regional, local) started to take on the attributes of totalitarianism, encouraged by terrorist extremism into the most absurd forms of control. We have lost the sense of what freedoms we were and are defending, since we no longer have a visible (foreign) enemy to defend it against. And mal-education has blunted the sense of moral rights.
    Governments have discovered the electoral expediency of expanding the state and the number of its employees to create a dependency culture. And Mr Smith no longer Goes To Washington (or Paris, or Westminster).
    Just an idea. And probably too general to address this particular problem.

  26. Absit invidia says:

    Somebody needs to tell these throwbacks that the 1980’s are soooo OVER!

  27. Priam1184 says:

    I realize that this article is an extreme example and was likely published as a scare story, but still it is emblematic of a way of thinking that has been present in the ‘educational’ establishment for a long time now.

    @Vecchio di Londra A good analysis of the situation. It seems a general trend in human history that when a nation, a culture, or a society does not have an external enemy to fear it becomes sloppy and stupid and thinks that it can do whatever it wants. That is a partial explanation for the complete moral collapse the Western world has suffered over the last quarter century, though its antecedents stretch back for decades and centuries before the fall of the Soviet Union.

    People seem to forget now too that moral degeneracy leads to national weakness on the geopolitical front. There are consequences to the socially idiotic policies that the Western world has engaged in these last several decades. New enemies (or old enemies who manage to rise up from the grave we that thought we put them in) emerge on the global scene who smell copious amounts of blood in the water. What I am saying is this: if Putin had any desire to do this (and I’m not sure that he does) and had enough soldiers to cover that much territory I am pretty sure that Russian troops could be marching down the Champs Elysee in six weeks if they felt the need. We are that weak now and I am pretty sure that what we possess now will be, in the not too distant future, taken from us and given to others.

  28. NoraLee9 says:

    And if you think the kids are being mistreated, try teaching in this milieu. Hubby got a letter in his file for standing up to some colleagues about: a) losing 3 students on an overnight trip due to their lack of due diligence. (Here in NYC, we lose, as in really lose, like forever, students on trips, yearly). b) Treating him with disrespect, calling him names, etc. He’s a Jewish convert to the Faith, and has gotten nothing but flack from several colleagues about it. c) The principal pulled him up short about his religion on several occasions. This is a teacher with 16 years in the system. They are arbitrary and capricious and that’s on a good day.

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