Thursday, April 3, 2008

A COMMONSENSE JURY AND A FEW OTHER THINGS

I was going to change my post this morning to discuss the inability of BPUB to keep the electricity running in Southmost - I woke up last night choking when my CPAP turned off and left me without air. It amazes me how hard it is for BPUB to keep the electricity running in Southmost. Anyway a student of mine showed up unexpectedly to demonstrate to me that my new approach to teaching math is working. So now my anger is gone and I will comment on the Jury with Common Sense.

But first the math issue. I showed my student how ½ * 9/9 =9/18=1/2 is the same concept as 4i/4-5i * 4+5i/4+5i = -20/41+16i/41 or 4i/4-5i=-20/41+16i/41 (this is remedial math by the way)

You see they get all confused and scared with the picture presented by the numbers while failing to see it is as simple as ½ * 9/9. I used this method of going back to the simple basics for everything he is about to be tested on. I was amazed how he could now come back and teach it. I’m very happy.

THE COMMONSENSE JURY

This past week a jury in Amarillo did a most extraordinary thing - used commonsense. The case involved a marihuana charge. The amount was small enough for the defendant to prove personal use only. In law there is a defense known as necessity. In concept it is similar to the idea that if you see someone assaulting your friend you are free to beat the crap out of the person (within reason) to protect your friend.

The defendant’s attorney put on the stand the defendant’s doctors to show that the only way the man could hold down food after eating was to smoke marihuana. The evidence was subjected to the scientific evidence standards before it was admitted before the jury. This is not just some doctor saying this to be true. They had to show the scientific studies to show it to be true.

The jury considered this defendant’s evidence and concluded his use of marihuana was necessary to his well-being. They found him not guilty. Commonsense is a great thing.

Now to make a few enemies, because the million I already have are not enough.

Yesterday someone said to me "can you imagine the number of car accidents which would occur if we lowered the drinking age to 18?" I said no. It was not a major problem when I was 18 and the drinking age was 18. No more so than it is today.

Here is the problem. My horrible mother (I will say it so you do not feel compelled to say it) would allow us to drink at family functions from the time, we were 15. Was it a lot - no - a sip here a sip there. Now on the plane between Miami and Managua, back then, I had my share of rum and cokes. The landings were bad because of the location of Managua. The fact the life rafts were piled up near the emergency exit on LANICA airlines, certainly did not help matters.

We all learned how to drink socially and responsibility. We were taught how to drink. In my case while I loved my Flor de Cana rum, I never liked beer until I discovered Negra Modelo. Until this day I am a very light social drinker - I will go months without drink. There was no mystery to it. There was no going behind mom’s back. We found it odd to watch our friends sneak hard liquor out of their parent’s house to drink in the woods behind the school. We knew if we asked for a sip of beer here and there the answer would be yes. We had no reason to hide it, so we had no reason to drink a lot or drink irresponsibly. We knew if we got drunk all bets were off and we would never drink again until we were of age and buying it on our own.

My point is, we so over regulate liquor and marihuana it make matters worse. Yes I smoked pot in college - shocker - I did it for pain management - I inhaled - it never worked to control my myofascial pain so I stopped. I hated the taste - but not the pleasure. I had a bad experience and I was done with it - except the time Lori seduced me with it and lets just say I went fishing.

I do believe the issue of alcohol is best addressed by the parents. I have no problem with parents teaching their children how to drink socially by age 15. Is it a regular thing - no of course not. It is about a glass of wine at a holiday meal - a quick sip or two of beer a couple of times over the summer while at the beach. There also needs to be a clear rule - "you ever do it behind my back, the privilege is forever lost."

You know, there is always the kid like me who hates beer until he discovers a good beer like Negra or El Indio or Shiner Bock. There was no mystery about beer for me. I hated it - so I had no desire to drink it - now rum was another story, but I learned to respect it and drink responsibly. Now my choice is Makers Mark. I never drink so much as one beer and drive.

THERE IS NO HINT IMPLIED IN MY MENTION OF NEGRA MODELO, EL INDIO, SHINER BOCK OR MAKERS MARK

5 comments:

Mas Triste said...

BW,

I agree about the jury issue.
I do.

On the MJ / alcohol issue, I am intellectually honest enough to admit that there is no answer.

In the long run, alochol is more dangerous and causes more harm than MJ, but anyone who denies that MJ is a gateway drug for those who are so inclined is in denial.

Prohibition? - Didn't work.

Government Control - Doesn't work.

Heavy Taxation - Hasn't worked.

There are just some things that may not have a solution.

Kurgan

The Merovingian said...

You see they get all confused and scared with the picture presented by the numbers while failing to see it is as simple as ½ * 9/9.

One of these days...my idiot resistant method if teaching fractions involving heaven/hell and never the twain shall meet.

M.

BobbyWC said...

Kurgan = you are right but that does not mean we cannot find ways to mitigate the problem . those who are going to use MJ as a gateway drug are not going to care one iota if it is legal or not.

The money we are spending prosecuting MJ cases could do a lot in our community to help children in need.

If I were to win the megamillion tomorrow I would invest in a private school with dorms for at risk children whose parents just cannot handle being parents. A safe home away from home. Separate schools for boys and girls. For the money spent on prosecuting MJ such schools could be opened up all over the US and we could lower the crime rate significantly.

On the alcohol issue - I do believe parents should be given greater leeway in teaching responsible drinking to their children. They have to learn it somewhere and it is best to learn it from responsible parents.

In my home everything was open - we had honest exposure to reality. I hate the herpies commercials because they remind me why sex without some type real emotional commitment is dangerous. So I abstain - I live in a practical world because I was allowed to be raised in a real and practical home.

Sex is real - so we discussed it - alcohol is real - so we discussed it - drugs are real - so we discussed it - masturbation is real so we discussed it - not so much this one as it was sort of made clear that masturbation was better than free sex - none of these things were ever a mystery to me.

Today we discuss nothing.

Get this, last semester I had a male student with 5 kids - 5!!!! - we we learning female anatomy in medical terminology. He was shocked to learn females have a urethra in addition to a vagina. He thought women urinate through their vagina. FIVE KIDS and he had never seen his wife's privates - do we begin to understand where the 5 unplanned kids came from.

Bobby WC

Anonymous said...

It's good that you don't drink often or heavily because if the electricity goes out, the CPAP turns off, and your body can't wake itself up, then you're in trouble. You should probably avoid drowsy medication too.

Patricia A.

BobbyWC said...

Patricia,

The VA because of the way they purchase things, would not even approve generic flonase for my allergies.

The flonase helps with swelling in the nose, among other things - people with sleep apnea need to keep the airway open.

Anyway, the VA finally came to understand they had to approve flonase for sleep apnea patients because - it does not make you sleepy like the other nose sprays.

Bobby WC