Friday, January 18, 2013

Innumerate Stupidity - Panic in the Classroom

"Since the horror of the Sandy Hook shootings, Americans are suffering from Post-Traumatic Stupidity Syndrome, writes Lenore Skenazy on CNN.
Folks in the throes of PTSS are so traumatized by a tragic event that they immediately demand something – ANYTHING – be done to prevent it from ever occurring again. Even if the chances of it happening are one in a million. Even if the “preventative measures” proposed are wacky, wasteful, ridiculous – or worse."
It's not meant to look like a prison ...
 It's bad out here.

"Lock every door. "
"But kids need to go between buildings."
"Install key swipes and give every kid a card. Install a buzzer and have the office buzz everyone in and out."
"Kids move every period. You'll have to hire someone to push the buzzer all the time and that negates any usefulness locking the door had."
"We must do everything we can."

There's no connection between the idea of safety measures and the reality of teenagers and the school day. I wrote earlier that we don't have a gun problem - it's true - and someone wrote back ...

"Your ideas about state-based solutions sound OK until you consider ease of access to goods in other states. A person's own state laws won't prevent them from acquiring guns and ammunition from another, more permissive, state."


We ARE the more permissive state.  At least 25% of my students have a personal weapon at home and are fully capable of using it ... It's that guns are used for hunting.

Drunk Driving is a problem. We have lost far more students to alcohol and drugs while driving than to gun violence but so many people panic when they see the big scary fear-mongering stories.

Doesn't anyone have a sense of statistical significance or is everyone suffering from Innumeracy in this country?


1 comment:

  1. In our son's debate classes, "significance" is one of the four "stock issues" required to support a policy change. Unfortunately, the emotional appeal of some issues clouds judgment among people who are otherwise "numerate".