I was looking in my “journal” last night, and noticed that I had made a ten items list for unstucking myself, and one of the items is to write 300 words before I do anything else. And I determined to do this today as I woke an hour before I need to be anywhere.
And I opened my computer, and did not arrive immediately at the screen on which I write this. I thought of my education manifesto, on which I found a typo in the title, and opened a tab for my hosting service.
I thought about my on/off again virtual assistant, Gerald, and looked for the weekly post materials from him. I thought about my freelancer working on my politicians list, and wanted to reach out to him. I did actually end up on Facebook, and read a comment by Roger Madon about the Supreme Court being a political institution.
And I scrolled down from there. I thought about this blank page, and I so didn't want to go there. And November, and NaNoWriMo, and if I shouldn't set myself up for that. And I thought about my students, and what they should learn, and how I should engage them, and now I'm thinking about getting some background material on Arthur Miller, and inside that, I just thought I should ask my Stamford people if anyone still has journals or diaries from the late 40s as teenagers that I could share with my students. And now I'm thinking of my Uncle Michael's diaries. He apparently kept notes of every damned interaction he had with the world. I would have loved to see what he wrote around that time.
I suppose there are ways I still am my teen-aged self. I'm certainly still different. It's such a fundamental part of how I be that it's difficult to think of it as a conversation.
So I'm thinking of . . . and I just stopped and wandered off in my mind to the curious case of two students who disappeared from my class; so now I am thinking of appropriate responses, the first might be to look at how I should respond, and formulate a policy with them.
And I'm stopped by the word “curious” that showed up above, and I like it. It's a better place to go than others I could think of, and now I say to myself, “hmmm, I should just publish this.”
So I am going to list some ideas:
- When does life begin? Give me ten reasons for your position, and ten against. Feel free to refer to biblical sources.
- When should we be ready to regulate speech? Who should decide? Are there any dangers? Can we trust the decision makers?
- When should a group be entitled to special treatment? Why?
- Should laws have fail-safe mechanisms built in? How?
- What is the role of government? Does this change with the intelligence level of the individual? Should it?
- Should a person be allowed to sell himself into slavery? When do conditions in a free society leave people in conditions akin to slavery? What is the role of a government to stop this? Should it? Is slavery immoral?
- What mechanisms can we put into place to curb the bureaucratic state? Should that even be a goal? List ten advantages of a bureaucratic state. List ten disadvantages.
- What is the role of government? When should you be trusted to govern yourselves?
- What is my role as teacher? How do you expect me to fulfill that role?
- Is vegetarianism ethical? Find at least ten ways a vegetarian lifestyle negatively impacts the earth? Is our natural state as vegetarian, carnivore, or something else? Which came first, the carnivore side, or the vegetarian? Make of a list of at least five ways we are adapted to be carnivores? Name at least five negative impacts of man's adoption of an agrarian lifestyle.
- Are there people who are too dumb to be able to be trusted with making their own decisions? Should we have a basic intelligence test to determine if a person should be allowed to vote? What would be the dangers of such a test?
- Would you support a universal basic income? What is society's duty to those who can not take care of themselves? Make a list of ten reasons why a universal basic income would be a good idea. Make a list of ten possible negative consequences. How might you design a law to find out? What could you build into that law so that if it doesn't work, it cancels itself? Would this be a wise move?
- Whom do you admire? Why? Should I admire him as well? Why? Should I respect him or her? Why? And why is “whom” the desired pronoun, or is it?
- What do you dream about for your future? Is there a reason you should not start pursuing this today?
- What should be the purpose, goal or mission of our educational system? How well are we working on attaining this?
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