[Milton-L] What have we become?

Carol Barton cbartonphd at earthlink.net
Mon Apr 16 19:17:32 EDT 2007

In the last thirty years, I have seen the professoriate degraded from role-models held (deservedly) in the highest esteem to service personnel respected by almost no one--especially not by many of their students, or the parents of those individuals. Students have been transmogrified from scholars grateful for the opportunity even to be failed by such respected members of the community to consumers who believe that because they pay tuition, they are entitled to the grade of their choice (whether or not it reflects the quality of the work they have done).

The ivy-covered halls have become a scene of rape--of violence--of carnage.

My heart goes out to any and all of you who are grieving for the children and faculty members who lost their lives in Blacksburg today, as I am. Supposedly--as of the latest bulletin--it began with a dispute between lovers. It could have been any of us, at any campus, anywhere.

"Guns don't kill people--people do." But when will we recognize that the right to bear arms did not anticipate the "right" of the amoral to bear arms against the defenseless--those whom that very law was intended to protect from their defenselessness in an uncivilized world, and an untamed environment?

Mr. Bush protects his own safety and that of his family and friends on Capitol Hill by ensuring that even those who work for the Government in unclassified environments go through rigorous background investigations before they are employed. There is a large security force with threat-detection equipment based at every Government facility in case anyone becomes a danger after he or she is hired.

Perhaps we need to make such background checks part of the college admissions process--and make certain that "no child left behind" does not extend to students who have the potential to wreak such devastation.

As someone observed many years ago, it is not the criminals of this nation who are incarcerated--but the decent, law-abiding people who must live in fear behind their multiple deadbolt locks. Something is gravely wrong with this picture.

God bless the slaughtered innocents, and comfort their families and those who were witness to this atrocity.

Carol Barton
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