Cue the “It’s been zero days since Oklahoma was a national embarrassment” social media gif.
Earlier this week, the Oklahoma House narrowly voted down HB 1028 – a bill that would prohibit educators from using corporal punishment on special needs students because, you know, we live in Oklahoma, an embarrassing state run by fools and morons who were elected to public office by equally impressive fools and morons.
The bill was defeated by a slim 45 - 43 margin. 13 cowardly lawmakers, including several liberal Democrats, didn’t vote on the measure because I guess the last thing they want is to appear soft on special ed discipline in public schools.
Although I was never a victim of corporal punishment, I’ll never forget the time my first-grade teacher at Lee Elementary School – Ms. Levi – grabbed the paddle that hung on the wall behind her desk and swatted a kid named Kevin in front of the whole class.
To this day, I remember him making the slow walk to her desk, being told to bend over, and then being hit with a couple of swift licks in the butt. He then walked back to his desk, tears in eyes, probably more shaken by the thought of the act itself than the physical pain it inflicted.
From that day forward, I always had a healthy fear of Ms. Levi and that paddle, which is exactly what she wanted. Let me tell you, it was an awesome and healthy environment for a six-year-old kid to learn.
Anyway, I think you have to go through some pretty warped mental gymnastics to justify using corporal punishment on run-of-the-mill Oklahoma students, much less students with intellectual disabilities.
That probably explains why the only justification some lawmakers could come up with was to cite ancient religious texts that were written over 2,000 years ago, during a cruel and barbaric time in human history when most people didn’t have civil rights, and crucifixion was a common form of state punishment.
Second, I don't know if there's a Ralph Shortey Distinguished Excellence Award given each year to the Oklahoma Lawmaker most likely to get caught in Southside interstate motel room smoking weed with a teenage prostitute, but based on his demeanor, voice, and the fact that he's speaking in support of schools spanking special needs students, it seems like Jim Olsen would be a runaway winner, and also for BDSM to be involved.
Seriously, could this Uncle Fester wannabe look and sound more creepy? I bet he has a vast array of child discipline instructional videos locked away on a hard drive somewhere in his house.
Anyway, I guess if you're a teacher who gets off on swatting special needs kids with a paddle, it's a great day to be alive.