Wednesday, November 07, 2007

What's Next? No Friends Allowed?

Well, I think we're approaching the end of civilized civilization as we know it. And I'm only partly joking. Because from this point forward, you are not allowed to hug anyone. That would constitute a "public display of affection" after all. Even if that hug is a friendly "good-bye" hug among friends. That'll earn you a detention.

Oh, and I guess that little tear drop forming in the corner of your eye when you know you won't be seeing them for the entire summer vacation? Cause for suspension, I'm sure. In fact, you'd better not even have friends, because that would eliminate any possibility of displaying any form of affection at all.

That's what this world is coming to, apparently...at least as evidenced by this article.

Something is wrong here. I'm sure the school board was originally trying to preventing the "suck-face" displays that irritate the on-lookers in the school hallways. Seems reasonable. But come on, a good-bye hug among friends?

I'm tired of the implications that touching implies some impropriety in this world. If anything, I think there is a serious lack of touching in the world. People need affection. People need to know they are loved and cared about. People need a shoulder to cry on or a comforting embrace at times. Girlfriends need (for some reason that eludes me) to hold hands or lock arms as a way to prove their BFF status to everyone around them. Even boys need to rough house. Touching is a part of life. It is a necessary and healthy part of life.

So, what is it with banning the "PDA" (public display of affection)? And what school principle would be so cold-hearted to interpreted such a school policy so literally? Have we forgotten our common sense?

I'll admit, I'm not a "huggy" kind of guy. I find it slightly uncomfortable when my fellow man throws his arm around me to show me he appreciates me. Yet, frankly, I wouldn't want it to end. Because the only way I'll stop being uncomfortable with it is when I see how important it is as a normal part of life. A normal part of relationships.

There is a guy at church who a touchy-feely kind of guy. If he is within a few feet of you having a conversation, he'll undoubtedly pat you on the back, hug you, shake your hand, or even, dare I say it, place his hand on your shoulder! And despite my own discomfort in displaying similar PDAs, I find it truly pleasurable to be around this man. He makes you feel loved. He makes you feel like he really cares about you, and that you matter.

I wish the same could be said about me and my more hands-off approach.

So, I say, go ahead. Hug a friend. And if it leads to a detention, so be it. Because we all need a little hug now and again. And no school policy should tell us otherwise.

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