Friday, August 29, 2014

My words, like silent raindrops fell and echoed In the wells of silence (Paul Simon)

I shared this TED talks presentation with a couple of my classes this week.

When my form class watched (and my Year 11 class) I could tell they were thinking about what they were seeing/reading (I had the transcript on as one of my students is deaf). How did I know? They weren't talking!

Did they get the message? I don't know. I hope so.

Why did I show it?

Well let's's a tough message and I thought it was worthwhile and Clint Smith is an engaging speaker. And it was short, but long enough to generate thought without being a lecture.

Most of all though - I wanted to challenge myself.

What does that mean? Well, at times, we're all guilty of silence-looking away, not engaging with others, and not confronting prejudice front on.

I have been that guy in the past-the one who bites his tongue when people are racist or sexist or stoopid. It's tough for me to be confrontational in that instant. Particularly when they are strangers.

A bus driver took my football team to a game recently and he was vaguely homophobic and I couldn't let his idiotic comment slide. I used my old standby - friends of mine are gay and they are good people (better than a lot of heterosexuals I wanted to add, but I didn't-I wish I had but he was ignorant and I had to get my girls to the game in one piece).

Feeling like I needed to watch the talk a few times to get the message, I did just that with the classes. 

I think I have it now. I will not be so accommodating next time, I hope.

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