Student’s (property) rights are the school’s responsibility.

The Tosh.0 episode that aired yesterday contained a compilation of videos- made mostly by school kids called “scissor time” (annoyingly pronounced “see-sars” in the videos) in which school kids filmed themselves surprise-attacking their classmate’s headphones by cutting its wires in half.

As Tosh says in the episode, “its easy and it pisses people off”, you’re damn right not only does it piss me off but its also illegal – refer to your local property damage and vandalism laws, and in addition there’s also potential for personal harm due to the destructive potential of scissors in untrained hands. 

In particular I feel sympathy for the victims as the targets are usually (since I’ve only got the videos to go on) physically unfit nerd types who can’t really fight back whenever their personal property is violated, and are especially vulnerable when they’re sitting down with their headphones on, studying. I feel very strongly about this because I too have often been the target of (albeit somewhat milder) attacks such as a rogue classmate forcing the power button and causing me to lose all my work, or purposefully scratching my laptop casing. And its particularly these damages that are irritating, because although in time I learnt to deal with them, such as adjusting the power button settings on my laptop and increasing autosave intervals, I would argue and any reasonable person would agree that the property owner should not be subjected to these kinds of risks, even if in the school environment. Unfortunately such victims of property damage aren’t afforded much protection, because if a classmate scratches my laptop, what am I gonna do? Report him to the teacher? 

There is no justice in many schools, you’ve seen it in that bully documentary where the teacher just can’t be bothered to deal with bullying choosing to ignore it instead, despite the criminal nature of bullying, be it criminal harassment, theft or robbery or property damage, these actions are crimes in the adult world for a reason, yet schools don’t care that little trolls grow up to become big trolls with real life consequences.

It’s not like I haven’t tried, but the asshole teacher would just respond rhetorically and with incredulity “what do you want me to do”, daring me to make a big deal out of it, another piece of bullshit is “call the cops then”. Other excuses such as “got proof?” what, if I don’t have direct evidence its not like the school is going to launch a full scale investigation, they value eye-witness accounts more anyway and bullies are often more popular than victims, the victim is always dared to stay silent. And the teacher is right, most victim types won’t make a big deal out of these little tid-bits of bullying, but where do you draw the line?

Then schools expect students to not-get-victimized. They provide guidelines such as, “don’t bring your expensive items to school”- that’s victim blaming, you wouldn’t say that to a rape victim but somehow because schoolyard bullying is a lesser crime so its okay to blame the victim? “You don’t need your computer or earphones”, I’m sorry but actually I do, earphones block out unwanted noises replacing them with better noises, and computers are the 21st century (welcome btw) to your archaic paper notebooks, and besides what gives you the right to decide that my property isn’t worth protecting just because I didn’t conform to your lack of compatibility to the current era? Its like denying human rights to a drug-user convict, Two wrongs don’t make a right, especially when I’m not actually wrong.

It seems that only when the issue becomes a news story does a school ever take action, such as if a victim was violently wounded or committed suicide then there’s a noticeable shitstorm, but there will never be a news story for some little cunt cutting up your $100 earphones, so good luck getting any meaningful reforms out of that.

Schools are afraid of security cameras for the same reason Ferguson cops are afraid of wearing cameras or having dashboard cams, because they don’t want responsibility for what is supposed to be their responsibility. It’s willful negligence, when I’m in a school venue I have a right to be fully immersed in my studies without having to take unreasonable precautions against other classmates’s stupid behavior. And it is the school’s responsibility to ensure a basic level of safety of student’s property. In today’s cheap technological age it is unacceptable for a public school-venue to lack surveillance cameras.

Kids will be kids, you cannot expect them to not be kids just because you gave a stupid talk. Therefore it is the responsibility of the school, not the parents, whenever the students are in the teacher’s custody, to provide a basic deterrence for criminal behavior and make sure that there are negative consequences for such criminal behavior. My ex-school loves preaching morality, but one of the core elements of morality is justice. Another core element of morality is truth, and even a cheap security system will provide a healthy dose of the latter as well as a basis for enforcing the former. My ex-school loves preaching respect, but only when it is respect for its authority figures, well guess what there’s this authority called my property rights, and I expect that to be respected as well.

At the end of segment on the Tosh.0 episode, he spoofs the videos by beating the shit of his “scissor-er” who turns out to be Edward Scissorhands. Unfortunately this revenge is restricted to fantasy land, the real bully-victim dichotomy is precisely that of Edward Scissorhands verses a piece of rubber wire. 

Also, fuck you Po Leung Kuk Choi Kai Yau school go suck a dick, pretentious cunt school responsible for so many bad memories, I realize that probably all schools are as pretentious but again the lesser of two evils doesn’t make a good, boycott all schools that spend more on decoration than on pragmatic necessities!


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