0 0 Ten years ago, I gave this lecture after Princeton University Press released The Art of the Public Grovel: Sexual Sin and Public Confession in America. For several years afterwards, I got media calls every time a public figure apologized for cheating on his wife/girlfriend/partner/whatever. Most...
I think we are split into three (general) factions.
One faction seems relish the idea of their leaders taking advantage of their position rather than condemning taking advantage?
A second faction will utterly and completely condemn certain actions, regardless of place in society, individual situation or type of apology?
A third faction seems to have stayed the course and react in a manner that is similar to what you describe in your lecture?
I know this isn't exactly the point of your address in the video (which was insightful) but I wonder if this is another issue. While I think the public confession is necessary (and was for Clinton, though it was compounded with "I'm the victim of a conspiracy; have pity and mercy on me, too"), I clearly remember that the public loved this because they felt like they could relate to his downfall -- after all, an affair was a private matter, and many regular folks were just as guilty of having extramarital affairs. People felt a kin to their President. As for Trump, let's take his foul, vulgar, repugnant, unpresidential, and unprofessional discourse: I have already heard Americans admit that he shares their sentiments, and "he talks just like me." They relate to him, just like Americans "related" to Clinton. So they are willing to pardon his bad behavior b/c he seems human, faulty, like them. And he hasn't even given a public confession -- nor will he ever, I think.
Maybe a new book on tribalism? Tribalism has negated the need for groveling, unfortunately.
I enjoyed watching your talk. One thing that struck me - I was in college during the Clinton scandal - I remember hearing arguments about how a person can be rotten in his/her private life (i.e. have poor character) but still be a good leader politically. I think the 90s began the uncoupling of good character = potentially good leader, or, said another way, bad character = bad leader. I wonder if that idea has had a hand in leading us to Trump.
Necessary or not that depends on the spouse that is the ultimate victim and what it takes for her to move on. What strikes me in all that is that this is all very superficial. Yes, maybe public or private groveling, sincere apology and promises of fidelity going forward may be necessary providing that there is enough of what it used to be a relationship to start over. If I were in her shoes (a proverbial betrayed or abused), apart from emotional conciliation, I would like to know “why”. For isolated cases, it might be very private circumstances leading to infidelity or sexual harassment, but since we are dealing with a wide spread pandemic affecting many famous and otherwise trustworthy individuals, we are dealing with a social phenomenon. There is no excuse for this type of behavior but maybe there is some other problems that are leading to it. Maybe we are too used to mixing power and domination in a work place. Maybe the regular sex life has become less healthy and thus need for an extra kick. Maybe it is harder in the society to have a meaningful, fulfilling, intimate and consensual relationship especially in a work place. Finally, why all these women waited so long? How many of them are yet to come forward and how many never will because of shame, lack of evidence and borderline nature of the abuse. How can we be confident and trust each other if we have not fully understood the causes of this phenomenon.
We as a society need to figure out how people can sincerely apologize and make amends. A cultural shift of taking responsibility for our actions.
I watched and listened. I don't know whether it's necessary, or even effective anymore.
I have watched public apologies in my community and on the Internet these past two years and my observation is that lately most are scrutinized and rejected (for insincerity or other reasons). We want wrongdoers to pay with shame, public humiliation, and ostracism.
I admit to feeling satisfaction on the exposure and fall of a villain. However, there comes a point in the public stoning when I can no longer bear to watch the fervor, the pride, the glee with which my friends and associates continue to kick the corpse.
When apologies are no longer enough, what then?
I don't even know any more....
I think you should write a book titled "Everything is going to be alright".
So many public figures and leaders have been exposed for sexual sin. Personally, I'm more jaded about all of it.
"When people who cry out for mass surveillance of homeschooling families articulate some strategy for addressing the far, far larger problem of bullying in schools — I’ll even allow them to ignore spousal abuse — then I’ll believe that they care about the children."
Preach it, Alan.
Listen, none of us want to see it made EASIER for parents to abuse children. But when will reporters figure out that abusers exist across the spectrum, in every state, both inside and outside of institutions, avoiding oversights--BECAUSE THEY ARE ABUSERS?
There can and should be greater oversight. As [Jeremy] Young suggests, annual checks by a state government employee, empowered to look for signs of abuse and evidence that kids are actually being educated, would seem to be a minimum required by a commonsense concern for the well-being of the childre...
No to home visits. No to surveillance. No to forced doctor visits.
It doesn't matter how many rules you make, there will ALWAYS be evil people who manage to get around them. (Not to mention government bodies can't even properly execute the duties they have already.)
Overall, I'm so sick of the torch & pitchfork--we must have a mandate--mentality. The prejudice against home educators and lack of thorough logic in this type of situation is palpable. If one is truly incensed to action they need to be fair and equally treat everyone inhumanly. They must insist on mandated visits to everyone's home in America--preferably at a minimum every month--because you could starve/dehydrate/torture a person to death faster than a year, and we've found adults and kids being held captive many times before. Why a cry now for monitoring but not then?
*Besides, a police state offers so many benefits!* Constant home monitoring would root out all sorts of crime and would provide so much opportunity for greater social control and engineering. To make sure we catch those who try to move often to avoid inspection we can issue arm bands citizens must wear indicating their last inspection clearance check date. 🤦🏼♀️
I've now had three separate people come to me and ask, "So, as a homeschooler, what do you think about this problem and what should be done to homeschoolers?" and I just stare at them and say, "You mean, how do I feel about this AS A HUMAN BEING?" and tell them it's awful but they are missing the entire point and they don't see that. I worked in public, private and now homeschool and abuse happened all the time, EVERYwhere. I ask them, if the next time a child comes up abused or neglected in their district public school if I should call them and lead with, "How do YOU feel as a public schooler and what should happen to YOU?" It's really blind judgement against a group of people and, I believe, in many cases comes from a place of fear of the homeschooling movement as a whole - a defensivness born out of many things. Often, misinformation or ignorance about purposes behind the choice. This story was atrocious and has made my stomach turn multiple times since it broke. But we need to deal with the real issue - abuse.
What the Turpins are accused of doing is horrendous. No argument, no question. However, according the the US Department of Education's website 9.6% of student in public school in the US are subjected to sexual abuse by school staff members. I would find it very hard to believe that this is true in the homeschool community. I very highly doubt that close to 10% of homeschooled kids are being sexually abused by their parents. And that 9.6% number does not include other forms of abuse (physical, emotional, mental) nor does it include peer on peer abuse that occurs in the public school system. Not a week goes by anymore that I don't see a news article about a public school teacher being arrested for having a sexual relationship with a or multiple students (recently many many many of these teachers have been women). So when we are talking about oversight and the impact of that oversight on protecting children, perhaps it is in fact the public schools that require greater oversight. They seem to have a much larger problem than the homeschool community, despite their perceived "oversight."
“...evidence that kids are actually being educated...” - I think the statists need to stop worrying there’s a fleck in my eye and worry about the giant sequoia tree lodged in their own eye. Thirteen years of public education in Sacramento convinced me there had to be a better way.
"It is, I admit, far easier to direct the suspicious attentions of state power on tiny minorities of people whom you despise for cultural reasons than to address truly widespread social tragedies."
So. very. on point.
I think it’s ludicrous because why not just assign every family a social worker upon birth because kids ages 0 to 6 aren’t required to be in any type of institutional care and those kids typically either can’t talk or can’t communicate very well… But somehow the conversation doesn’t go to let’s intrude into every single person‘s life who ever has a child but instead let’s just focus on this one small group of people and the very rare outliers that you’re going to find across the spectrum. A was a little boy murdered in LA, He was six years old he told his teacher he was being abused .. CPS visited his home many times over the 7+ MONTHS and nothing ultimately was done and he’s dead. The system didn’t save him and he was under the eyes of mandated reporters more than most people.
I can see where they're coming from, that if the children went to school they would be able to escape the home abuse for 7+hrs a day, someone would see that they didn't look well or were hurt and the children might be more willing to tell someone what was happening. I know there are children who have been helped that way.
I also understand not wanting to feel like you're being monitored as a homeschooler (or parent in general) and worrying that someone will take your kids away (especially with these crazy CPS stories we hear about).
It's tough when there are 2 sides that feel so strongly about their own beliefs.
He makes a good point about monitoring for spousal abuse. I hadn't thought of that.
An annual visit might help for severe cases, but it's easier to clean up and look good for a day.
I'm not condoning innappropriate relationships in schools, just throwing another view out there.
Yes. and YES. Did you happen to see the article by Isreal Wayne on this topic? The statistics about abuse of children at school are also startling - and concerning. Here, I'll link that article in the comments for anyone interested in this topic.
I haven't read the article yet, but what comes to mind are the MANY public school teachers who have been arrested in Child Porn rings... so there's that.
We've become a nation obsessed with "fixing" things as a response to tragedy. Rather than admitting evil exists, we reach frantically for anything that allows us to blindly follow the religion of moral relativism. This time, rather than admit evil is real, homeschooling takes a turn at playing the boogeyman. Because if we, as a nation, were to admit evil exists, we'd have to also admit it can exist in public schools, parochial schools, evangelical churches, Catholic churches, seats of governmental power & on and on.
Um, the public school kids where I live haven’t been to school in ten straight days due to 3-4 inches of snow...and that’s AFTER winter break. Now, you tell me who isn’t getting school done? That’s not to mention bullying, pointless pep rallies, teaching to standardized tests, and countless other ways time is wasted. I hear almost non stop about kids who come to school hungry and teachers who send kids home with food so they’ll have something to eat at home on the weekends. So this is a homeschooling problem? Try a family/parenting/societal problem.
Are they actually proposing homeschoolers receive annual visits of their homes to make sure that kids are not being abused? Are annual visits made before school age? Are homes with infants, toddlers and preschoolers ever visited? To think that the purpose of school is now to protect children from abuse. I thought schools were supposed to educate. When did they become the protectors of lost and abused youth? If we police homeschoolers, should we police parents in general? Come by during dinner time and make sure all the major food groups are represented and the radiators are being used for heat and not shackling. Or how about visits during the summer when a child is not under the protective watch of a teacher for months. Since when were the teachers, the school, the state a more reliable parent than an actual parent. Let's police the schools. Let's arrest the pedophiles and the bullies.
Hopefully all who would be so illogical to assume the top picture is a representation of home education would like to agree that the bottom represents public education.
Arguing extremes is for kindergarteners!
Abuse happens in public, private, and home schools.
Neglect happens in public, private, and home schools.
Success happens in public, private, and home schools.
Humans are capable of the most shameful of things, and communities and neighborhoods have unfortunately given over the responsibility of loving their neighbor to government agencies vainly at work overseeing morality in a culture which embraces relative truths.
God help us.
I really, really hope that no one who is connected to me sees this headline regarding this sick couple from CA and thinks it is a homeschooling issue.
Abuse is a human issue.
I’m a fan of being accountable to my community for the education of my children, and understand I’m accountable to the government for their education because of the day and age in which we live.
I once had a local teacher blast me on Facebook for choosing to homeschool, claiming it was child neglect to not offer my children the opportunity to attend Woodrow Wilson High School.
When we have educators and professionals in our community using that kind of language, it makes me want to at least be bold enough every now and again to defend my passion for homeschooling.
Ethan told me this evening he saw where a good old public schooler posted “the super & tender called and said no school” - seriously, please do question my choice to educate mine the way I see fit! Please tell me how neglectful I am!
I am not bashing public education, please know this! I know many students applying themselves, many teachers giving their all, and many parents nurturing and loving their children, and I am certain they will find success.
I just get so tired of the completely irrational, illogical, and ignorant arguments attacking the method I love.
Are people really trying to pretend that no terrible people exist who teach in public schools - (LA's sexual abuse for years scandal costing taxpayers millions), that no terrible people exist that send their abused and maltreated kids to public school. Why are the schools having to feed kids breakfast - you see the mothers talking about how great it is and they have expensive acrylic nails, tats, etc. If you can get you nails done and hair braided and dyed, you can afford to feed your own kid.
I was unfriended (both Facebook unfriend and real-life unfriend) after I said how ridiculous it was to suggest that people shouldn't be allowed to homeschool or should be required to have visitations by CPS or another agency. We don't homeschool our children and never have but the logic that homeschoolers are simply doing it to hide abuse is offensive and ridiculous. Would anyone suggest that there are no children in public or private schools who are abused? They have ample access to non-parental adults but as we all know, sadly, many, many of them are abused at home. Not to mention that there are those in positions of authority at schools who themselves abuse students.
My son was sexually assaulted by his pediatrician...along with over 100 others....it’s a HUMANITY issue.... sadly our world is going to keep getting worse.
If I had any tendency to give any credit whatsoever to the original article that he's arguing against, it would have been destroyed at the phrase "noted in an important tweetstorm" LOL
I homeschool because I was public schooled. I don't allow my children to go to sleepovers or church camp because I went to sleepovers and church camp.
Abuse is a human problem not a homeschooling one.
It’s possible to care deeply about both.
Over the years I was perplexed as to why so many cases were coming out as to teachers having inappropriate relationships with children. As of last year in our region there were several cases. What society has allowed is part of the issue not shutting away and not being apart of it. Otherwise cloisters such as those with Nuns and Priests in general would be bations of insanity and evil. This "anything and everything is OK with us" mentality in society has brought about these intances.
I read that they filed for homeschooling in 2011. Where were the kids schooled before then? Were they abused before 2011?
Why isn't there one report out there crying about the fact that the home wasn't inspected for fire safety each year, as was their agreement with the state to do so ( or so was pointed out to me by another family that also home schools under the same exemption)?
No one should think this is right or imagine this should happen but we aren't even taking the precautions which are already in place. It doesn't mean we need more laws it means people break laws no matter how good they are.
The resources to do this well simply do not exist.
A snowy day is a great time for new book lists! I really like this children's list from TIME--so happy to see TUESDAY, ANIMALIA, and GOOD DOG CARL, three of our all-time favorites, along with some wonderful older classics and a few new friends. The young adult list (time.com/100-best-young-adult-books/) I find less interesting (seriously, are people still reading THE CATCHER IN THE RYE?), but you might glean a few ideas from it.
I like cold weather, really. (Even subzero weather in Virginia, which has its own set of challenges.) But in the middle of the mud and grime and grit, I think longingly about the day when I might visit the Hotel del Glace... https://t.co/e8mVWxHUkp