Friday, December 19, 2008

Barack and Rick

So it seems many in the gay community are incensed at Obama that he would ask Pastor Rick Warren to give the inaugural prayer in January.

Isn't this a bit disingenuous?

Obama and Warren sharply differ on key issues, namely abortion. Yet, both men are big enough to put those differences aside for a greater good, namely, the swearing in of a new President and the recognition of a milestone event.

This is classical tolerance, not the modern version of "I'll tolerate only what I agree 100% with." That isn't tolerance, that's agreement. Tolerance is living with things you don't like, or agree with, but recognizing a greater call or purpose that you can come together on. Isn't this what people have been seeking?

I applaud Obama for his choice. Obama himself has stated he does not support gay marriage. Do people think he is only making that statement as politically expedient? Maybe, but calling Rick Warren a bigot or hateful is lame, childish, and smacks of petulant children not getting their way. Plus, Warren speaks for a majority of Americans who support traditional marriage (come on, you know what that is). Are those on the radical gay side willing to smear the majority of Americans as hateful bigots? Really? You want to do that? It only weakens your case. Name calling has no place in debate.

Be glad that we as a country can meet on bigger issues despite our disagreements and these two men are providing a stellar example.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Teaching High School

Being a high school teacher in Compton is one of the most difficult, if not the most difficult, jobs I've ever had.

Paramount is a feeling of inadequacy, that this task is just too big for me.

I am only in my second year teaching, but I feel like a failure almost every day. I don't know how teachers do it - how they remain confident, positive, and in the profession for years. This is a second career for me; I started in middle age so perhaps starting younger gives one an edge.

I feel like the job would be much easier if I could count on students to do their job; that is, pull their weight on assignments and maintaining respect for the classroom. Granted, I don't always have my stuff together, but I feel like I am pummeled by those few ill-mannered, disrespectful students to be ultimately made to look a fool in front of the class.

There are days I just want to be rescued, via a deux-ex-machina. I really don't know how long I will stay in this profession.