Handwriting? We Don’t Need No Reeking Handwriting
Filed Under: Music & Film, Opinion | Posted: 04/08/2008 at 9:53AM
Comments | Region: United States | Wisconsin
"My son, who is in third grade, spends much of his school day struggling to learn how to form the letter ‘G.’ Sometimes he writes it backwards. Sometimes the tail on his lowercase T’ goes the wrong way. [He] may fail the state assessment standards."
When I was attending university, I had an ineffably magnificent English professor who taught in class that, in our contemporary society, “We have mistaken the goods for the Good.”
The Good is a very important concept found in Plato’s Republic. Today we might call it Quality—as in, quality with a capital “Q” because it is an essence and a principle that permeates everything and informs us of how something ought to be.
Plato’s Republic was much at the forefront of the brilliant minds that got together to write The United States Constitution and Declaration of Independence—documents that officially created the greatest nation in human history.
Not a perfect nation, to be sure. My same professor friend, speaking to me in private, said something that I gleefully stole from him and still write and say to this day. He said, “I hate America. But—it’s still the greatest place in the world to live.”
So, dear reader, imagine my shock and awe when, reading the news today, I was directed to a magazine ironically called “Good” and read this:
"My son, who is in third grade, spends much of his school day struggling to learn how to form the letter ‘G.’ Sometimes he writes it backwards. Sometimes the tail on his lowercase T’ goes the wrong way. His teachers keep telling him he may fail the state assessment standards. We have had several ‘interventions.’ Simon now fears taking up a pencil. Repeatedly being told his handwriting is bad (a fine-motor-skill issue) has become, in his mind, proof that he is a bad writer (an expression issue). He now hates writing, period.
This is absurd: I am a college professor and a freelance writer, and the only time I pick up a pen is to sign a credit-card receipt. Let’s stop brutalizing our kids with years of drills on the proper formation of a cursive capital "S"—handwriting is a historical blip in the long history of writing technologies, and it’s time to consign to the trash heap this artificial way of making letters, along with clay tablets, smoke signals, and other arcane technologies.
Many will find this argument hard to swallow because we cling to handwriting out of a romantic sense that script expresses identity."
How about, instead, recognizing that we “cling to handwriting” not just out of a sense of personal identity (And just what the hell is wrong with that? Oh, I see: it’s “romantic” and thus a complex of inferior feelings. Kind of like modern “love”, right?), but because learning handwriting just so happens to stimulate both sides of the brain, instills discipline, can be a type of art, and one day, you may just find yourself out in a forest without a damn laptop or PDA! (I don’t know, but I’ve heard that such things are possible.)
This is the Lefty Liberal clap-trap happy horses**t that pervades American (and Western) public education. Anything deemed “old” is no good (I suppose borrowed and blue things are no good, too). This is why going all the way back to that racist idiot Woodrow Wilson, American “progressives” have had an idea that our Constitution is “old” and, thus, it can be not just amended, but altered, distorted, deconstructed, or just plain burned at Fahrenheit 451 to make way for somebody’s personal feelings or uniformed opinion about how things should be.
No, the Founders did not have any sense that some things are not propaganda, some values and truths are not relative to historical contingencies or cultural norms but are these things called “principles”. All systems break down, cultures rise and fall, but principles are unfailing, unyielding, and timeless.
Principles are, in fact, Plato’s Good.
The feminist Liberal happy horses**t that I read here I know for a fact has got to outrage many a parent. It should also at once disgust and frighten you.
(Why do I say feminist? Sorry dear reader if you are a female, but the fact that more gals are going to college than guys now in the U.S. is not a success and does not prove any superior female brain power or sense of responsibility. It shows, sadly, quite the opposite. And a female professor who says that her poor little boy should not be forced to have his self-esteem squished and come to make what is of course a life-long decision to hate writing, teaching this happy horses**t to maybe your own son or daughter while you pay in excess of $20,000 a year is what the affirmative idiocy New Chivalry gets you.
I love brainy gals. The brainier the gal, the sexier she is. Brainy people really are more attractive than the average. However, what I am stressing here is that those brainy gals are mostly not to be found sitting in lecture halls these days. The brainy guys aren’t, either. The guys, being more aggressive and at once kicked in the face by New Chivalry nonsense, already started figuring that out and, instead of going off to receive more Indoctrination they do things like, uh, invent Facebook.
Our educational system is beating down brainy people, grinding down feasts into meals, and forcing mediocrity to kill aristocracy. “Aristocracy” is derived from the name Aristotle. To achieve being aristocratic was what the bourgeoisie emerged to achieve in the first place.
But apparently it’s just hot for many to handle. So instead of soaring as high as they can, instead they demand that the rest of us be shot down in flames. Or it might hurt their weak egos, their inauthentic selves.
This can’t go on. This professor should be fired immediately and banned from teaching permanently. She is a disgrace, and about the one millionth piece of positive proof that Liberalism is a mental disease.