Open Your Minds: Dignified Disobedient

Posted on: 11/02/2009

By Jack Dunford

For the last six months, I have been doing something which felt good at the time, but afterwards made me feel dirty, and cheap. Politics. The art of governing people. To me, Politics seemed like a good way to get an AS. Add another string to my weak bow. Alas, it wasn’t for me, and so I felt the need to let it go. No more essays on adversarial politics, or the legacy of Thatcher. Coincidently, did you know that the iron lady helped make Mr Wippy ice cream? No, you didn’t. Remember that next time you are tucking into a 99. 

I digress. I didn’t want to do this foul, essay ridden subject any more. I took the exam, and walked out with my head held high, but confident about what I needed to do. The first place I turned was the member of staff who would be able to help. Explaining my case, it was ignored, simply because everybody “leaves with 3 A-Levels”. “What about my dreams for University” I was asked, and when I responded that I was aiming for the “University of Life” I was met with a glare of disgrace. Not getting what I wanted, I was ushered out. 

As a college, we are under a bureaucratic system. Follow the rules, stick to the plans, don’t object unless you’ve got the paper work. But Politics had taught me that there are other paths to follow, and to get what you want you have to work for it. Looking at my options, and with the knowledge that extremist action (e.g. fire-bombing the college, however tempting it may be), a peaceful protest seemed like the best thing to do. 

No more going to lessons. This wasn’t “being tardy”, this was full-blown ignorant denial. Digging my heels into the ground and raising my hackles whenever anyone, human or teacher, told me to go. Thinking of this “rebellion” and something that Gandhi may think up, (while in reality it’s more of a plot by Rick off The Young Ones). Let’s see how long I could last before they noticed. 

I attend every other lesson religiously, including General Studies, aiming for close to 75 per cent attendance. Enough to show I was still interested in my education, but enough also to show something was up. I avoided any route which would take me past the offices of my teachers, and aimed directly at my goal. 

For a while, it seemed I got away with it. They wouldn’t let me go, so I won’t play ball. Nobody gets hurt. And that’s where I’d like to say my story ends. If you don’t go to lessons, nobody cares. Simple as. Until I got home and found an angry letter on my desk, informing me I had a meeting with the same teacher who’d told me that three A-Levels was for everyone. 

The meeting went well. I uttered few words, whilst they flailed waves of negative connotations towards me. I was breaking rules. Apparently bureaucrats don’t like rules being broken. It sends them haywire. But my junior anarchy worked. They let me drop it. No more Politics. Fantastic. My mission was completed. 

So the lesson learned? If you want something that they say you can’t have, take it another way. When the front doors locked, go round the back, and I’m not using that as a euphemism. 

This month Jack has: Finished “Animal Farm” by George Orwell. It’s a good book, if you can get over the whole ‘talking animals’ thing. Also, try to see Russell Kane on tour. Bloody hilarious.


1 Response to "Open Your Minds: Dignified Disobedient"

Hey buddy, i know things can seem pretty tough at this time in your life. But lets you and me break it down and just rap for a minuit, mano on mano. Listen dawg you gotta get your head in the game if you want to reach for the stars. Its the bottom of the ninth and your dreams are being pitched. Are you gonna strike out or hit that home run that you deserve?

I know what its like bro. Back in highschool i used to party hard, and not pay enough attention to my studies. But then in my final year got my act together, bucked up my grades and got into Law school. Thats what youve got to do padre, get your eye on the prize and your dreams can become a reality.

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