“…and then he apparently rubbed his tobacco in the other student’s hair.”
Right at the end of a lengthy chat about my son’s progress at school and what needs putting right, his teacher mentions a skirmish that he’s supposed to have got into while on the school bus.
Even more than the fact that he hasn’t been smoking for the best part of a year, I’m struck by how the reference to “his tobacco”, is made purely in passing. Time was when it would have been item 1 on the rap sheet.
But now? A 16-year-old is supposed to have smokes on him and his school act like it’s a bunch of pencils.
I can imagine all sorts of reasons I could be offered for this.
Young adults needing their space.
And, of course, the overbearing imperative to avoid judgementalism.
No doubt I should rejoice that he and his generation are so free. So why is it I have this nagging sense of young people not being looked out for quite as much as they once were?
And why doesn’t it feel remotely like progress?