Saturday, November 8, 2008


These are the rules. It does not matter how dumb they are, we will follow them because they are the rules. You cannot question them because they are the rules.

It sounds stupid, but how many times at work or dealing with the government have you ran into that scenario? This came to my mind last night while I was reading a book titled The Rest Of The Best Of Baker, Vol. 2. It is a collection of newspaper columns written by Rick Baker, who was a columnist for The Peoria Journal Star. He died in 1988. My Mom loaned me that book as well as Vol. 1. She told me that both she and Dad had enjoyed them and reading the books I know why. He was an interesting man.

2 of his columns dealt with this kind of stupidity. The first involved a requirement in Illinois that you had to pass Drivers Education to get your diploma. I do not know if they still require that but in the 80's they did. What makes that a stupid rule? Because of that rule a blind girl had to take the course. She had no desire to drive and the state admitted she could never get a license. They did waive the behind the wheel portion of the class, but she had to take the other part. They came up with several reasons why she had to take it instead of saying, "You are right. A blind person has no business in Drivers Ed." It took him 2 months, but he finally convinced someone to waive that requirement.

The second rule does not exist today. It concerned a girl who wanted to play basketball. At that time there were no girls teams. She did play on the team, but when tournament time at the end of the season came, she was banned. She could not even dress with the team and sit on the bench. She was not a great player, but good enough to play in most of the games. When Rick contacted the person responsible for that, he said he wished the girl had contacted himself so he could have told her why she couldn't play. The reason? It was against the rules. He didn't try to defend it, it just simply was that way. Now schools are required to spend equal amounts of money on both boys and girls sports, which is only fair.

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