By Gentleman Bandit
How a dwindling minority of mid-caste teacher’s pets dominate the expert class despite their near-total lack of experience.
I’ve written before about the Square University Culture. I don’t mean everybody who attends university — I mean people who are born in comfortable circumstances, advance easily through the educational system, get their university degrees, then find jobs and settle into comfortable lives (generally including marriage, kids, buying a house, fiddling around on the stock market, maybe a dog) until they eventually die. A lot of folks will read the preceding description and say, “But isn’t that everybody?” Hilarious.
There are presently around 2.3 million people incarcerated in the USA. Most of those are poor people with limited education (less than half have a high school diploma), and most of them are in there for drug crimes. Sure, the occasional Martha Stewart or Lori Loughlin can be found in prison, but for the most part I assure you there are precious few squares in the Big House. An additional 4.7 million are not presently housed in a jail or prison, but are on Parole (meaning they were once imprisoned) or Probation (which usually means they were found guilty of a crime but did not serve time inside).
Statistics tell us that roughly 3% of Americans are addicted to illegal drugs. That’s another 9.8 million who can’t be caled Square (a term which originated in the jazz scene to indicate those who didn’t drink or use drugs). You know something else? That population of drug addicts overlaps significantly with the population of incarcerated people — they say around 50% of incarcerated individuals are addicted to illegal drugs, and that jumps to 80% if you include alcoholism. Drugs and Prison are part of a culture together, holding common values, similar backgrounds, enjoying the same music and movies and books, sharing commonalities in language.
Categories: Culture Wars/Current Controversies