I don't eat peanuts very often. I'm not a huge fan of peanut butter, I don't buy peanuts as snacks, I'll get some beer nuts if I see them for sale somewhere and I'm desperately hungry yet nowhere near a ham. But I swear to God, if you tell me I can't eat a peanut somewhere I will freak the fuck out.
I understand the thinking behind a peanut ban, I understand the severity of some allergies, but I also understand what will happen to me if I get struck by lightning. Doesn't mean I wear rubber boots every day. I've written before about my loathing of peanut bans, especially in schools, and how it's an allergy something like 1 percent of people have and there are just short of no deaths each year as a result of peanut allergies (which may be because of the peanut ban, you never know). I feel it teaches kids that other people are responsible for them, and that they deserve special treatment, not just for allergies but for anything. It's a symptom of the massive pussification of schools. And there's so much worse than peanut bans going on.
A teacher in Edmonton, Alberta, was recently suspended for the egregious crime of refusing to pass students who had failed. He contends that he was instructed by the school's principal to not give out zeros for missed assignments. The principal says a zero doesn't accurately reflect a student's knowledge, that pupils should be given the chance to make up the work later and that every day students should ride to school on moonbeams and marshmallows. That way it's more fair and demonstrates that they have in fact learned the material and are not just mouth-breathing little douchenozzles being sent to day care.
Right away the problem with this is exemplified by people who no longer remember what it's like to be a student in a school. Maybe one kid in a whole class, in a whole year, legitimately missed an assignment because of some insane reason -- all their grandmothers and fathers died in a week, they had dengue fever, a Kardashian tried to hump them, whatever. But that kid will likely go to the teacher and ask to make it up upon realizing he was going to fail.
The fever is worsening. Don't let my terrifying and inappropriate expression convince you that I caused this to happen.
Slack-ass slackers don't hand in assignments on time because they probably don't give a shit. That's why they're slackers. The school feels this is a behavioral issue and the students should be encouraged to improve, not given a self-esteem-shattering zero. You'll notice this is the same way the rest of the world works. Remember how you can choose not to go to work for a week and your boss will ask if there's a better time for you to do the work? Do you remember that? Do you? Hell no you don't, and neither does anyone else.
If you fail in life, you fail. Arguably your corporate overlords should cut you some slack if you have the dengue fever, that shit's cold. But they're not going to pay you for shifts you missed and your job will be in jeopardy eventually, so maybe think about getting a Band-Aid and taking some ginseng or whatever.
If an assignment doesn't even exist to be graded, logic dictates that it gets a zero. And that kid who got a zero earned it, so cut that "extra chances" shit out unless you want to give every kid who got an 80 a chance to earn an 85 with some extra time, or maybe the 90 kids could boost their grades to 95 with extra time. Maybe that teacher never needs to go home or stop working and can just live in the school, giving students extra chances like some kind of grade fairy. Or whatever.
Across the U.S. and Canada, many schools are switching vending machines to healthier snacks. They're tossing out chips and chocolate bars and offering kids bullshit like carrots, granola bars and apples. Please don't defend a carrot vending machine, it absolutely is bullshit. It's like a porn company making pornos that feature nothing but Renee Zellweger look-alikes. Come on.
The rabbit hole in this one runs deep, so follow close. Kids are fat. You hear that all the time. There's an obesity epidemic. For real, if you ride on the subway without a mask and the wrong person coughs on you, bam! You just got obese. It's everywhere. So we need to curb that. How do you curb it? Stop Fatty Jr. from eating Pringles at school. God, how does he even get his chubby mitts into the can?
Chili is my favorite food group, but my mom prefers the wieners. Humor masks my pain.
What's another good way to curb obesity? Physical education? Yeah, no. The National Association for Sports and Physical Education says about half of students get physical education during a school day. In high school it's less than a third. In New York, only 6 percent of schools gave their students two hours of physical activity in an entire week. Only five states require that PE even be taught from kindergarten through grade 12, and there isn't a federal law saying it's even required. No problem though, right? Kids can play at recess? Yeah, no.
For years now, schools across the country have been banning contact and chase games -- tag, touch football, anything like that, because someone could get hurt. A school in Toronto recently banned balls. Clearly they don't have balls to begin with, but they also banned basketballs, volleyballs, soccer balls and anything that's not made of Nerf, because a parent was hit in the head by a soccer ball and it was so hard it made everyone within 10 miles retarded.
But hey, at least kids eat healthy at school now, right? Yeah, no. While that dusty, sad Zellweger of a vending machine may be full of Depression-era carrots, the cafeteria is where most kids get their meals. Fast food joints test the quality of their beef as much as 10 times more often than the FDA tests beef sent to schools. About a third of schools meet standards for saturated fats offered in their meals, while school lunches can have as many as 1,400 calories, found in things like pizza, fries and tater tots. Basically, kids eat shit, they are literally banned from playing or running around, but the schools have carrot vending machines so they can pretend to be healthy while actively eliminating health, all under the guise of protecting kids from themselves.
Schools are conditioning kids to be slow, dim-witted, chock-full of food that provides low energy and no brain power. You're worried about a future zombie apocalypse? It's not Florida face eaters you have to worry about, it's schoolyards full of motionless, brain-dead zombie fifth graders.
Fuck. You should probably never say that to a class full of second graders. Make a note that if you're ever speaking to schoolchildren, just using "fuck" as a sentence unto itself will get you nowhere. Avoid it as a noun, a verb, an exclamation, just avoid it. Same with "shit," "balls" and "dildo." Keep those all under wraps.
In New York, things got taken to the next level when "dildo" wasn't being said enough in schools, so they decided to start banning words on standardized tests that were equally as offensive but said a lot more often. You know, words like "birthday" and "dinosaur."
The thinking for this ban is that some students might feel uncomfortable hearing these words. What students? Well, Jehovah's Witnesses don't typically celebrate birthdays, so you wouldn't want to talk about birthdays around them. Better they live in a pretend world where people don't age. And people who don't believe in evolution or sense at all might be offended by the word "dinosaur." It's worth noting that even creationists believe in dinosaurs, and those people are literally mentally defective.
Giant lizard? Yeah, right. That's just Calista Flockhart. 'memba her?
In the real world, you have as much choice believing in evolution as you do in Justin Bieber's fame. Sure, you can't put it on a table and poke it with a stick, but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist. And even beyond that, every dead dinosaur strung up in a museum wants to slap the stupid out of your mouth before it dribbles onto the bib of your overalls for not believing in dinosaurs.
Like me, you were probably stoked when you got accepted to that Dominican correspondence school where you got your gunsmithing degree. I called all my friends right away, and they were both very excited by the news. My mom was a little more blase about the whole thing, but she's heavily medicated, so it's understandable.
It's natural to be excited when you're a kid and you get into college, but some schools have decided that you need to keep that shit on the d-low. That's slang I learned during my time at correspondence school. It means shut up.
Some prep schools in New York are not allowing students to wear clothes featuring college names or even post Facebook status updates of their acceptances until everyone settles on a school for the year, so no one has to feel bad. Because everyone at this school is apparently a terrifying mix of Eeyore and Debbie Downer, just waiting to shit on a friend's good news like a self-absorbed dick-faced monster of gloominess. Either that or they're all made of the finest china and a blow such as hearing that a friend got accepted to a better school will shatter them like actual college is going to shatter them when they realize the world isn't here to make them happy.
I nearly shit when I read this story originally. Like a full-on shit born of equal parts rage and a complete lack of understanding, not based on lack of knowledge but based on an all-consuming inability for the human mind to grasp the necessary concepts involved because it's so stupid in otherworldly ways one would need a wizard and some manner of voodoo spirit guide to even hope to begin figuring it out.
There's a kid who has a potato allergy, so potatoes are banned at the school, lest he be exposed to dreaded potato gas. Potato gas is dangerous to him, you see.
Stand back! You know I'll do it! I'm fuckin' crazy!
You might at first chock this up to being precisely the same as the peanut ban, but it is not. One in a million people has a peanut allergy, you see. Jack shit no one has a potato allergy.
I feel for this kid, I do. I like potatoes. I would be straight-up pissed if I had to never have a potato. Here's where I type "but." But here's the thing -- I bet this kid would have a terrible reaction to a cartoon coyote dropping an anvil on him from a considerable height, but word has it the town has yet to ban cartoons, coyotes or anvils.
There has to be a point where your own health and safety is more your concern than it is everyone else's. I have it on good authority that if I drink 20 shots of tequila in a very short amount of time, I will vomit across your bathroom profusely and fall asleep in front of your toilet. I don't expect an embargo against Jose Cuervo to save me, however. If I have an allergy to a crop that the world produces 330 million tons of every year, I'm going to maybe carry around some Benadryl and a epi pen all the time, just in case. I am not going to expect that those 330 million tons of potatoes be kept away from me at all times. I am not a monster. Learn to deal, kids.
For more from Ian, check out The 6 Most Bizarre Global Warming Side Effects and 7 High Tech Products And Their Cheap Ass Ingredients.