Wednesday, June 01, 2011
Boys Will Be Boys
It is nice to see that this yeshiva is working on the issue of boys from the school jumping fences, going onto the rooftop, and breaking the neighbor's windows. And perhaps the surveillance cameras will do the job (so the boys can be expelled) . . . . .
But, pardon me for having an opinion, but this entire approach to raising boys of "boys will be boys"---therefore we shouldn't give them a proverbial kick in the tuchus from the get go, lay down the law, and follow through with consequences when the behavior pattern has yet to be ingrained into the psyche--is completely flawed approach, and one I continually run into. I've heard this excuse too many times from neighborhood parents and educators. And I protest!
Bad behavior (especially behavior that violates the basic foundation of Torah--i.e. do not destroy other people's stuff) should never get a free pass. Many of our boys* need more exercise, more space to run around in, an educations better suited for their energy. But when you get to the point of vandalism and even having to install surveillance video, a generation of young men has been failed. Expulsion is a band-aid after parents and educators haven't done their jobs. What a pity.
We demean boys (read: future husbands and fathers) when we write off their behavior to their gender and give them a free pass--only to let that behavior hurt them later--rather than embracing their characteristics and channeling them appropriately.
*and girls too for the record