Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: That's Inappropriate!

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  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Most schools have trousers as an alternative uniform for girls. I'm talking about getting rid of the skirt completely and forcing the all girls to wear trousers all the time.

    If you want to give girls a life lesson, it's never too soon to learn about the kind of weirdo who thinks lady trousers are next to Godlessness, muff-diving and being an armpit Rapunzel.

    (Dear God: Next time around, can I be a cockroach? The whole human being thing isn't working for me.)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Lilith __,

    Wow, speaking of adults, apparently we shouldn't be showing our arms, as that would be unprofessional:

    “Covering arms is a mark of respect in many religions institutions and sacred spaces, so too it should be in the workplace.”

    Dunedin • Since Jul 2010 • 3887 posts Report Reply

  • Raymond A Francis,

    Let's remember that we have not heard the whole story here
    But it is not helpful to tell any girl (let alone one who in your opinion might be headed that way) that she looks like a slut

    Speaking to the teacher who is in charge of discipline at our local school on Friday she said she would not even allow herself to think the word let alone say it

    One of the problems for teachers is that they can see patterns of behaviour that will lead to almost certain outcomes, often at quite young ages. I like to think most try to be helpful rather than use verbal put downs that will almost certainly accelerate bad behaviour

    45' South • Since Nov 2006 • 576 posts Report Reply

  • Tess Rooney,

    Since May 2009 • 267 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg,

    I'm not sure if there are some editorial guidelines that the papers follow when writing about the school system. Like:

    If there's a dispute betwen the ministry and the teachers - always support the ministry and belittle the teachers.

    If there's a dispute between school and students - always support the school and belittle the students.

    Stockholm • Since Jul 2009 • 802 posts Report Reply

  • Raymond A Francis,

    Craig, love your gravatar thingy...tits up indeed

    45' South • Since Nov 2006 • 576 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Lilith __,

    “Covering arms is a mark of respect in many religions institutions and sacred spaces, so too it should be in the workplace.”

    That’s a seriously crap line of reasoning from someone who is supposed to be a “career consultant.” What “religions institution” are you talking about? I’m a Catholic and was raised never to go to mass barefoot or wearing a hat. If I was a Muslim or Jew, being bare-headed at prayers in a mosque or synagogue would be profoundly offensive.

    Of course, there are plenty of workplaces where there are perfectly sound, and explicit, health and safety reasons why you’d keep your arms covered. (For example, working in a restaurant kitchen around food, boiling liquids and open flames; or a factory where you're handling chemicals.) It never hurts to ask.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • B Jones,

    Patterns of behaviour my elbow. In my experience the dealing of the s word says more about the dealer than the subject. Girl I went to school with got it bestowed on her by the then principal for wearing black opaque stockings. This guy also thought it was appropriate to congratulate the (female) top academic prize winners on their appearance.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 976 posts Report Reply

  • Whoops,

    Fuck me, such a terrible, disastrous event warranting newspaper articles, blog posts , people appalled, gobs smacked (and me commenting)... NZ is truly a hell hole.

    Nothing else important to chatter about?

    Nothing?


    (don't mind me, I'm just grumpy today).

    here • Since Apr 2007 • 105 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Nothing else important to chatter about?

    If you look really carefully, you'll find other threads, with other stuff on them. Go to it.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4650 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    The ‘can’t you find something more important to worry about’ thing is from the Crappy Ways to Argue on the Internet Playbook, I believe, but it might also be from the Stop Caring About These Unimportant Issues, Ladies pamphlet, too. I get so confused.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    You're hurting your cause by being so thorough.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Whoops, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Like I said, just grumpy today...

    Love your work. I come here for the chatter. It keeps things interesting.

    here • Since Apr 2007 • 105 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    What next, Uncovered Meat (TM) ?

    As Craig R mentioned, usage of the word 'slut' isn't unusual. It's the usage by an authority figure that is.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5420 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Jackie Clark,

    What Jackie said. Essentially the teacher failed that day.

    However, that happens and I'm inclined to accept that teachers have bad days and fail. For which they should apologise and try and do better ... wait isn't that what the teacher did? Did the teacher have a history of such behaviour? If so then there is a problem that should be dealt with by the teacher's employers.

    Should the parents raise the question of if the teacher has a problem? Sure. Should the parents ask that a record of this instance be made so that if it occurs again it can be seen as a trend and not an isolated incident? Sure. Should the teacher be treated as a bully and pilloried? Um no. A single act does not equal bullying, it may be wrong and even reprehensible but it isn't bullying.

    I think the editorials are completely unacceptable but I also have a problem with using this teacher's mistake to highlight bullying of students by teacher. I really don't think this is fair on the teacher. No question she failed but equally setting her up as an example of teacher bullying is also a failure of fairness.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4451 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    just a diamond geezer, taking the p*ss...

    I am going to rename my son Topaz Zirconia.

    hmmm, Yellow Crystals... sounds like
    a urinary tract infection - attractive!
    ;- )


    Bum steer...

    Craig, love your gravatar thingy…
    tits up indeed

    @Raymond, I fear your sharemilking
    career may be shortlived! ; - )
    ...and shouldn't there a be a Peter Peryer
    thank you under that pic?
    :- )

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7892 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    1. They aren't any more crazy than they used to be.

    If every generation actually got as much crazier as its parents' generation alleged, starting with the first recorded compaint of this type (Socrates, I believe), by now society should have decayed into such a state of anarchistic, hedonistic immorality that civilisation itself should have collapsed. And yet here we all are. Odd, isn't it?

    (Along these lines, I have heard that a fun game to play when the topic of how young people these days binge drink so much more than previous generations comes up is to read Austen's 'Mansfield Park' and tote up how many drinks people are mentioned as partaking of per day of plot. Apparently it's staggeringly high.)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I really don’t think this is fair on the teacher. No question she failed but equally setting her up as an example of teacher bullying is also a failure of fairness.

    OK, I’m going to assume Ms. King wasn’t forced at the business end of a taser to become a dean of students (which involved spending a lot of time on disciplinary matters with truculent recidivists I'd get Mr Stabby with in a matter of minutes); and if she can’t handle stress without being abusive, I’ve got to ask where the frak is her professional support? The principal and the board’s attempts to mitigate and enable her unprofessional misconduct doesn’t impress me either.

    And, as I’ve said elsewhere, don’t try and tell me a simple oral apology would be acceptable if the shoe was on the other foot. As I said up-thread, the teacher unions have been demanding zero tolerance for verbal abuse of their members by students and parents for years.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi, in reply to Lucy Stewart,

    If every generation actually got as much crazier as its parents’ generation alleged, starting with the first recorded compaint of this type (Socrates, I believe), by now society should have decayed into such a state of anarchistic, hedonistic immorality that civilisation itself should have collapsed. And yet here we all are. Odd, isn’t it?

    As a counterexample, I submit the continued success of Soulja Boy. The End Times are truly upon us, Lucy.

    (Kidding, I generally take the same view of "moral decline"-it's not a function of actual degeneracy at all, just a result of people growing older and becoming aware of things that they were shielded from as youngsters.)

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    There should be, but on reflection I probably should change it before the Copywrong Cops get on my arse. :)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    No question she failed but equally setting her up as an example of teacher bullying is also a failure of fairness.

    My point is that slut-shaming (in the general) is as much bullying as physical violence is. Ergo, one incidence of verbal abuse is the same as one punch: quite possibly simply a loss of control on a bad day, to be understood but not excused. My problem is more, yes, the attitude in the follow-up pieces, that being a 'slut' is something so terrible that it's worth making a teenager miserable to keep her off that terrible destructive path.

    I have enormous respect for teachers, and sympathy for the ones who've had to deal with both myself and my daughter. I still recognise, though, that there are some few bad teachers, and sometimes those people are found in quite senior positions. I do find it worse that this woman was a Dean, and not a junior teacher.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4650 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I have enormous respect for teachers, and sympathy for the ones who’ve had to deal with both myself and my daughter.

    Indeed – and I have a good friend who is a dean, and simply won’t have any contact with some students (and, even worse, their truly vile parents) without a third party in the room. I can understand why she doesn’t want to be alone behind a closed door with a mother who thinks “uptight fucking cunt” – and forcing someone to get an unlisted home phone number because of prolonged harassment – is an acceptable mode of discourse.

    I don’t think anyone here would be delusional enough to pretend teaching is a lifetime pass to Easy Street. But, FFS, who’s the adult here?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    Although, why is 'Amethyst' awful and 'Ruby' acceptable?

    Indeed. "Amethyst", as merely a coloured variety of quartz, is less precious - but that can't be it, otherwise "Jade" would be a more problematic name than "Diamond" (on which, see the Boomtown Rats song).

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1890 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to linger,

    I’m planning to go straight just long enough to father a daughter, who I will christen Muffy ( WARNING: LINK CONTAINS NSFW IMAGE ). What use are Australians if you can't make them blush?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I've now solved the #slutskirt crisis - spray-on gold hotpants for everybody.

    And, of course, here's how you can have a floor-length gown that's uber-slutty before you drop to your knees.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

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