"Linux - Stop holding our kids back"

Greg Rundlett greg.rundlett at gmail.com
Thu Dec 11 14:17:40 GMT 2008


On Wednesday 10 December 2008 10:10:09 pm Aaron Haviland wrote:
> Mike Rushton wrote, on Dec 10, 2008 at 10:59 EST:
> > http://digg.com/linux_unix/Linux_Stop_holding_our_kids_back
> >
> > Please digg this to bring awareness to the complete and utter ignorance!
> > You have no idea how infuriated I am right now after reading this.
> > Teachers like this need to be dope slapped across the forehead like
> > nobody's business, fired and put through school all over again, starting
> > with kindergarten to learn how to listen.
>
> Dunno, I'm unfazed, unsurprised. This seems normal behaviour for many
> people. That's why we need to keep pushing, and educating them.

I feel that too many "advocates" in the comments of the article attack the 
teacher.  As free software advocates, I feel we will gain much more by careful 
explanation and instruction -- making new friends.  In other words, our job is 
to teach the teacher, not to make her an adversary.  That starts with an 
empathy for the values and beliefs of the "student", and finishes when the 
student gains a new understanding of the values and beliefs and knowledge of 
the free software community.

Put another way, She never considered herself an adversary to Free Software, 
but "we" labeled her that.  And by attacking her (even saying she should be 
fired, or tarred and feathered etc.), "we" create an adversary.  It would be 
better to allow her to understand our perspective and our knowledge (starting 
by understanding hers - since that allows us to precisely identify her 
misconceptions).  Done this way, we create an ally.  I'm not willing to 
"convict" this woman as a bad teacher based on the single incident which 
displays that she is not a technology-savvy person.



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