Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My bad influence

For those of you who read this blog on MySpace, you'll notice that most of my "friends" are teenagers. No, it's not because I hang out at high schools looking to pick up teenage girls to date. I hang out at only one high school, and I'm not really hanging out, I'm working. As a teacher, I probably know a lot more teenagers than the average person. (And if you know more than I do, then maybe you're the creepy type who likes to hang out at high schools looking for a date.)

On the Blogspot page, most of the comments I get are from my adult friends, along with a lot of folks whom I've met online. I also get some comments from some people whom I've never met before, either in person or simply online - that's kinda cool, actually. However, on the MySpace page, most of the comments are from former (and some current) students.

I've had people express reservations regarding the fact that teenagers read my blog. Much of the stuff I write about is pretty harmless, but sometimes I get political, and sometimes I comment on religion (and my comments are rarely positive in that regard). I also fuckin' swear sometimes (although I've noticed that I can go weeks with curse-free entries) and sometimes I write about beer. So, am I corrupting the youth? Am I leaving myself open to some potential trouble?

I suppose that I might get some comments from parents some day, but I feel pretty secure in my defense. The main reason for this is that I've never instructed students to read my blog. I don't think that I ever even mention my blog. Also, as far as MySpace is concerned, the vast majority of students on there added me first. In other words, they sought me out. So, the bottom line is that my blog is an exercise of free speech. If I was telling kids to read it, or even worse, requiring that they read it, then that would be something else.

Personally, I think that's enough. Other than that, I don't think that any of this is going to hurt any of them. As for the swearing, they can walk down the hallway and hear far worse. If they don't like my religious and political leanings, then it won't kill them to hear another point of view. When it comes to the beer stuff, I'm an adult, and it's perfectly within my legal rights to make and brew beer. And even if you disregard that, I write about having an appreciation and a respect for beer. I don't write about how I downed a twelve-pack of Douchebag Light via a beer bong. I think that most teenagers would find my beer analyses to be about as interesting as a lecture on the Hawley-Smoot Tariff Act, so I doubt that any of them read it. And if they do, then hey, better that than the beer commercials that you see on the Superbowl. If anything, the stuff I write about promotes a much healthier attitude when it comes to the stuff.

Anyway, it's starting to sound like I doth protest too much, so I'll just wrap it up. The bottom line is that most kids don't read anything, and those who are interested in reading are smart enough to know that these are just the opinions of just one man. I doubt that any of them deify English teachers. (See! You can also build your vocabulary by reading my blog! Maybe I SHOULD assign it!)

1 comment:

Eileen said...

It's mostly the stupidity. The sheer, mind-numbing stupidity of their insipid comments.