This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Dangerous Minds Essay

1595 words - 7 pages

Cindy Eisenberger
Research Paper
SOC 111
Due: Nov. 29, 2012
Dangerous Minds and Savage Inequalities
Dangerous Minds (1995) is the account of a white teacher LouAnne Johnson who takes a job
teaching a class of low-income black and Hispanic students in an inner city high school, and
encounters a variety of social issues such as poverty, racism, drugs, gang violence and segregated
schools and neighborhoods as well as trying to acclimate herself to whole different culture. Most of
the teachers and the school authorities care nothing about these students and their problems, and
are simply passing them along without teaching them anything. Miss Johnson does come to care
about them ...view middle of the document...

These ghetto neighborhoods also lack banks, supermarkets, parks and other
public services, and have high levels of crime, gang activity, unemployment and drug dealing.
Kozol asks rhetorically whether Americans even believe in equality at all, and judging from the
condition of these public schools the answer would seem to be negative. Everyone even slightly
familiar with these urban public schools knows very well that they are “closely tied to class and
race” (Kozol 60). Most of them lack adequate textbooks and equipment, and even functioning
playgrounds and bathroom facilities. Almost none of their students will go on to higher education
and dropout rates are often as high as 80-90%. Those who graduate from these places will be
lucky to read at an elementary schools level, and they realize by 5th or 6th grade that they are being
cheated and do not have nearly the same educational opportunities as whites in suburban schools.
States paid about 50% of the budgets in these inner city schools and the federal government about
6%, but these funds are never sufficient to even come close to evening out the disparities with white
suburban schools. Since funding is based on property taxes and the value of property is much
lower in these segregated "ghetto" communities, this is “the decisive force in shaping
inequality” (Kozol 55). He points out that of course “there are wonderful teachers…almost
everywhere in urban schools, and sometimes a number of such teachers in a single school”, but this
is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination (Kozol, p. 51). As shown in the film, inner city
school teachers are older and badly paid compared to those in the suburbs, and the cities rely on
poorly paid substitutes and temporary and part-time teachers as well. They have no funds for
remedial classes, sports facilities, libraries or textbooks.

This movie is an accurate depiction of socialization and economic problems of minority youth
in inner-city schools, where they are confronted with a system that they know is hostile or indifferent
to their needs. As they tell Miss Johnson, she is the only “light” they have and they plead with her
not to abandon them. She can help a few of these students, of course, but changing the larger
structural and institutional problems is beyond her control. Most of the teachers have given up on
these students, and simply make them read books like My Darling, My Hamburger while several
have simply quit already. This school also does not even have enough money to buy pencils,
books and paper for the copying machines, although it does have its own private security force. To
say that the students are alienated and mistrustful of the entire system would be an understatement,
since they are all intelligent enough to know that they are only being prepared to stay in the innercity ghettos. Even the creepy and soft-spoken black principal, Mr. Grandey, seems more like a
bureaucrat who fears lawsuits and the...

Other Essays Like Dangerous Minds

The Debate on Animal Experimentation Essay

958 words - 4 pages . Third, testing on animals influence health risks because "results often [transcend to inconclusiveness] and cannot accurately extrapolate [on] humans; [as] a result, relying on the results of animal testing [leads to] dangerous human health" (Thomas). Human have a high risk of dangerous health problems because of the mistakes that go on in the lab. Wavering results jeopardizes human lives and may even lead to death. Overall, animal testing for

Human Machines: Fate Or Fantasy? Essay

1304 words - 6 pages flexible minds that are easily altered by various factors, especially technology. Dr. Jim Taylor, internationally recognized for his psychology of parenting, provides what has happened with the rise of technology in the following statement “Then the internet was invented and…distraction is the norm, consistent attention is impossible, imagination is unnecessary, and memory is inhibited” to describe what happened to children’s minds as they used the

Brave New World

2007 words - 9 pages hope for mankind lay not in technology but in man himself. He feared that unchecked research in science and technology was inherently dangerous, and that the misuse of knowledge can have dire consequences. He also feared that people would become so content to have all their diseases cured and their problems eliminated that they would allow their basic freedoms eliminated as well. Brave New World offers a picture of the world as it might become if

Teenage Problems

604 words - 3 pages alcohol lure children from the protecting arms of their parents out into the deep, dark troubles of the world. If you think that the drugs are simple as they were years ago. You would be mistaken. Crack, crystal meth, and heroin are just a few of the dangerous drugs children are using while there are out frolicking with their ‘important’ friend or attending crucial business meetings. Another pressing matter is sex. Sex is just about everywhere you

Students and Politics

537 words - 3 pages a whirlpool, he may meet with his doom. This is the fate sought by him through his immaturity. The youth should again and again be warned that they should not stray away from the portals of their educational institutions and that if they trespass into the dangerous territory of politics they will get lost. Nowadays there are political wings even in schools and colleges. When elections to the students’ associations are held political ideologies

Arabs vs Arabs

594 words - 3 pages traveling by road has also become dangerous. One of the major violence that this article talks about is the infighting in July near Sania Daleibah. More than 60 Terjems were killed by the Mahria tribesman. The ethical problem in this article is the following: the two Muslim tribes are battling each other which is leading to the killing of thousands and they cannot seem to resolve this problem. First of all the idea of the doctrine of recollection

death penalty

566 words - 3 pages dumb and dangerous things that they would never think of doing as adults," said David Fassler, a child psychiatrist and professor of psychiatry at the University of Vermont ( It should really be taken into consideration that teens minds are fully developed. Also, teens shouldn’t be sentenced to the death penalty because it violates The 10 Commandments. “One nation under God” is a line from our pledge of allegiance

International Relationship

651 words - 3 pages removes all trace of her existence from their minds and from their home, in order to protect them from the dark forces that are now hunting her.The brave and brainy heroine whose smarts so often get fellow wizards Harry and Ron out of trouble. From the beginning the Ministry is taken over by the death eaters and Voldemort’s Army. Hermione, being the knowledgable witch she is, knew she had to be prepared for this type of takeover. As predicted, the

Sexual Education: The Ignorant Teach Abstinence

961 words - 4 pages cookie-cutter clones of one another. The idea of education is to provide students with knowledge they can use when making decisions, and forming opinions. This should be maintained throughout all areas of education, not censored in some areas by people who have already made up their minds where certain topics are concerned. These people however were given the opportunity to make up their minds for themselves, lets let students do the same.Works

Explanation Of How Tecnology Is The Future And Has Benefited Humans

853 words - 4 pages scientists, such as Stephen Hawkins, have brilliant minds, yet diseases have overcome them. But, with the help of technology, researchers have been able to keep ill-fated people, including Stephen Hawkins, alive. For diabetics they have found a way to make insulin, which is very vital for a person to live. Cancer patients use chemotherapy, mammograms, and CAT scans to see if they have cancer, if it's going away or if it is coming back. When asthmatics

Lee's "To Kill A Mockingbird", A Novel Which Exemplifies The Life In The South And The Human Rights And Values Given To Everybody

891 words - 4 pages prejudice in Jehovah's Witnesses' case. When they come strolling up people's street, the first reactions to the neighborhood is to lock the door.They lock their doors because they hear the jokes and prejudice against Jehovah's Witness which puts the thought in people's minds that Jehovah's Witness is just a joke. On the other hand, many are already faithful followers to their own religion and don't want to waste the time listening to a mini sermon

Related Papers

Social Presense Essay

875 words - 4 pages  Social Theme Paper Twana Armstrong Soc/100 6/19/2012 Fonda Harris Social Theme Paper In this paper, Criminal Minds (2012) is the program chosen to discuss in the following information. Criminal Minds (2012) program is interesting and intriguing. This show is about crimes that occur and how the individuals work as a team to solve each crime. The show includes murders, psychological problems, medical problems, and

Defending Hume's Description Of The Human Thought Process. A Compare And Contrast With My Own Personal Opinions

605 words - 3 pages The human mind is a very intricate machine. There have been many people that have attempted, and failed, to explain how the human mind operates. After reading Hume, I was in agreement with a lot of what he was explaining. Hume, in my mind, has come the closest to uncovering the minds operations.Robert Hume dealt with a lot of what Decarte talked about in his writings. The difference between Decarte and Hume is that Hume 'ironed out' a lot of the

Modern Technology And Its Effect To The Youth

545 words - 3 pages hands, it can become dangerous. Technology is a valuable tool but is somewhat misused by today’s teens. The two main forms of technology affecting teenagers — cell phones and the Internet — have brought about major changes in our lifestyle. This technology has allowed teens to have inane communications and in doing so, contributes to the dumbing down’ of society. We spend more time corresponding with our friends on cell phones and the

The Tyger Essay

532 words - 3 pages simple AABB, alternating stressed-unstressed. The opening line, “Tyger, tyger, burning bright” shows good use of repetition. It also uses alliteration when saying “burning bright” to put a image in our minds of a fiery colored tiger. The poetic devices Blake uses in this poem bring bring focus, raise questions, and create pictures in the readers minds. 7. The first and last stanzas are the same, except for one word change, "could" becomes "dare." Why would someone create such as beautiful, powerful, and potentially dangerous creature. Blake seems to challenge the courage of whoever tries to create the big and powerful Tyger. kelsey