The Suitcase Lady

Stupid

February 5, 2008, 6:01 pm

Stupid is an excellent word – so strong and succinct. Too bad it’s been banned from America’s classrooms.

All I have to do is say the word in the most appropriate context in just about any classroom I visit, and gasps of shock will come from the mouths of the babes. How could Mrs. Tooley be saying that forbidden, horrible word? Some kids even spontaneously shout out, “You can’t say that!”

Well, yes I can, and I will. Of course, I may not be asked back to the school, but I refuse to buckle under to the “use no brain” philosophy of political correctness.

Stupid is the perfect word to use in many situations. In my Arctic program I explain to children how the polar bear’s adaptations make it a sure-footed walker on ice. Then I add, “If we try running on ice, it would be a stupid thing to do.”

Those of you familiar with educational jargon know the P.C. term favored in this and a hundred other situations. You are supposed to say in hushed tones, “Are you sure you’re making a good choice?”

I believe in telling kids directly and bluntly that running on ice is stupid for humans with our feet shaped like small skis. Concise speech may actually have impact in a few of their brains. And I will be the first to admit to any room of young people that I have done a lot of stupid things in my life. The trick is to recognize those idiotic behaviors and stop repeating them.

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