Sunday, December 30, 2007

Finding some meaning in tragedy

AUGUSTA, Ark. (AP) - Rumors spread by cell phone text-messaging flew through a school after a student's suicide, rumors that other kids planned to kill themselves, that students planned to bring weapons to school, that there was going to be "a shoot 'em up." Panicked parents rushed to take their children home.

But police and officials at Augusta High School say the panic turned out to be only a way for students to avoid taking semester-ending exams.

"Somebody took advantage of a tragedy that happened in Augusta, a tragedy of a young man taking his life," Superintendent Richard Blevins said. "Somebody exploited that and I guess that made me madder than anything else. Somebody was so insensitive to use that for their own gain."

An existing ban on cell phones at the school will be enforced when the winter break is over.

If you want to know what children are like at their most basic level read Lord of the Flies and Superintendent Blevins should know that. Or perhaps not. After all as an educational bureaucrat Blevins probably hasn't had much contact with kids since his semester as a student teacher going through education school.

Fact is that someone you don't know kills himself. Nothing you do or refrain from doing can either bring him back or make him "more dead" so why not try to give his death some meaning and purpose by using it to get one over on the system?