Posted by Brian at 11:24 PM
Now now, there's plenty of stupid to go around
Oh my. This will probably not come out well for the substitute teacher involved (nor should it), but she's hardly alone in the Stupidity Olympics.
A girl and her grandparents have sued the Chicago Board of Education, alleging that a substitute teacher showed the R-rated film "Brokeback Mountain" in class.
The lawsuit claims that Jessica Turner, 12, suffered psychological distress after viewing the movie in her 8th grade class at Ashburn Community Elementary School last year.
So let's get this out of the way first. This goes beyond bad judgment on the part of the substitute teacher. 12 year olds aren't supposed to get into an R-Rated film without a parent or guardian, and that's common knowledge. Why this teacher thought it would be okay to show it in an 8th grade class boggles me. Counting on 8th graders not to snitch is just icing on the cake.
But here's what I mean about there being plenty of stupid to go around.
Richardson said his granddaughter was traumatized by the movie and had to undergo psychological treatment and counseling.
In 2005, Richardson complained to school administrators about reading material that he said included curse words.
They're asking for--wait for it--$500,000. Look--the substitute teacher was wrong, and I doubt she'll work for the Chicago Public Schools ever again, but seeing "Brokeback Mountain" isn't worth $500K in damages. The girl is in 8th grade in Chicago--seeing simulated gay sex isn't going to damage her that badly. Seeing it live wouldn't damage her $500K worth.
But in all this, it's the complaint about the curse words that really put me over the edge. You're worried about curse words in classroom reading material? Unless something has really changed since I've been in school, the worst you'll read at that level is "hell" or "damn," which you can hear on broadcast television now, and I guarantee you that this girl hears a lot worse in the hallways of her school, possibly from the faculty. And if reading a word or two like that, or seeing an R-Rated movie is going to put her in therapy, she's got a lot more problems than anyone is willing to admit here.