My So-Called Life


Good news and bad news in the case of 14-year-old Rachel Boim, the Roswell, GA high school freshperson expelled after her confiscated journal was found to contain a dream proem in which an anonymous student kills an anonymous teacher: Rachel's expulsion has been tentatively rescinded. On the downside, The Peach State apparently employs a Poet Laureate. [Thanks to]


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  1. I wonder how quickly this suspension would have been rescinded if this were a 14 year old boy instead of a 14 year old girl?


  2. I wonder how quickly this suspension would have been rescinded if this were a 14 year old boy instead of a 14 year old girl?


  3. That’s what you get when you send your bright children to public schools.

  4. freshperson? Good grief.
    Please don’t ever use that word again tim….

  5. Good point Mike… when my son reaches school-age I will eat Raman noodles and bike to work (should already) to pay for private school.


  6. Another case of the “zero tolerance” silliness. I remember that Cobb county case vividly, and thinking that it made us look like the stupidest bunch of morons in Georgia. Well, it looks like Fulton’s trying to one-up us.

  7. Back when I was a freshperson in high school, I wrote a really gruesome, very violent story during my free time in a typing class. One day when we had a substitute in history class, we were passing the story around and somehow it made it into the hands of the sub and somehow he knew I had written it. He said something along the lines of “You know, I’m supposed to report this sort of thing”. Thankfully he didn’t, and I got the story back from him and didn’t pass it around class much anymore. This was in 1991… I imagine I would have gotten into a lot more trouble if this hapenned these days.

  8. I wrote stories about the following in elementary school: the murder of a teacher, the murder of various students, other teachers murdering various people, and the murder of the entire Detroit Pistons basketball team. [Celtics fan] And them when I was in high school, I massacred the senior class using sharp pencils and a baseball bat! Oh, if only my elementary school teachers had heeded the warning signs. True story.

  9. Unbelievable! The girl writes a FICTIONAL story about a student who DREAMS of killing a teacher?! Shit, I can write a non-fiction story about a college student saying out loud that he’d like to kill a professor, and I could place it at just about any university in the US. And it’s been about ten years since anyone in these parts acted on such an urge.

  10. My best friend had a list of people in his class that needed to be killed back in middle school.

  11. The article makes it sound as if he confiscated it because she was passing it around.
    If so, what authority did the teacher have to read the journal?

    What allows him to keep it overnight? The journal should have been returned to her at the end of the class, day, semster, or year, unopened.

    This seems like a 4th amendment violation.
    But then again, most people seem to think it’s acceptable to treat the future of this country with no rights, yet also expect them to grow up and preserve this country’s freedoms.

    Why is it that adults constantly say that “children” and/or “teens” can’t tell the difference between fact and fiction, when it’s only the adults around them who can’t?

  12. Mona,
    In 1996, I was almost expelled from my school because my father borrowed my car over the weekend and the pocket knife he recieved when he left Citibank fell out of his pocket and onto the seat. I went to school and didn’t notice it was there. When the school ‘bouncers’ (that’s what we called them) went through the parking lot and saw a gold-plated Citibank pocket knife w/ a diamond wedged in my car seat, they assumed I brought it for a violent purpose. With the zero tolerance rule for California, I was supposed to be expelled (all of this despite my parents telling them the actual case). The only thing that prevented them from actually going through with the whole process was the fact that I was an honors student with a clean record (never got caught at least) and that I was already accepted at MIT. Had the potential for very bad PR not been brought up to the district superintendent, I would’ve been expelled. Zero tolerance policies are idiotic. This incident was among the first of many that pushed me towards the libertarian viewpoint.

    Still, part of me would’ve loved to have seen the media shit-storm that would have resulted from this incident. MIT wouldn’t have changed their minds because of this and I would have gotten my 15 minutes of fame, so I had nothing to lose.

    This incident is a good reminder why all the Monday morning quarterbacking in the Columbine case pisses me off. What’s next, are they going to recruit precogs to prevent future school shootings?

  13. Back in high school, one day in keyboarding class, I typed a story about shooting a teacher, who, in O. Henry-meets-Ray Bradbury fashion, was a cleverly-disguised robot of The State.

    Now, I’m an English teacher. We’re not all drones.

    I have several “rules” about journals: first, I don’t “read” them. I count pages. Second, I don’t take them seriously. Third, I tell students in advance that I might occasionally–and unintentionally–“read” what they’ve written–so there are no confidentiality issues. If they don’t want to share it with me, they don’t have to write it in their journals.

    And believe me, the things they share… I must have gone to high school on Pluto. And I’m not even 25 yet.

  14. In 1996, my oldest son was expelled from a public high school for having been caught with an *unlit nicotine cigarette on campus (for the second time). He had been on the honor roll, but nicotine is a drug, and yanno, there is this zero tolerance thing.

    Tell me again that vouchers are so awful cuz private schools are selective and the publick ones must take everyone.

  15. I wish we lived in a state where people could complain about Libertarian dogma and feel oppressed.

  16. and public demand for such things.

    Usually, that’s what it boils down to…a school covering its own ass in the face of parent groups — spearheaded by idiot housewives — so that in the event of some Columbine-like massacre, they can say, “hey, we tried.”

  17. People.

    Your whiney opinions won’t change anything.

    The law-makers opinion will.

    Vote for better law-makers.

    IN addition, don’t bash public schools over this. Public schools in many areas are required by law and public demand for such things.

    If you think it’s silly, please elect some law-makers with a brain. Please.


  18. Oh for God’s sake!

    When I was in school, I carried one of those Swiss Army knives in my pocket all the time. It came in handy for art projects, science labs, and back-stage tech work on school plays. Teachers would sometimes ask me to borrow it.

    I remember one time one of the teachers did something to piss us off, and we started a pledge drive to raise money to hire a hit-man to knock her off. I suppose in today’s schools we would all have done jail time for that, but back then our teachers had enough perspective to recognize teenage humor when they saw it.

    I don’t normally stoop to such crudities, but it sounds like the Roswell school system is a bunch of pussies!

  19. Is there any recorded instance of someone being killed with a Swiss Army knife?

  20. Georgia is not “The Peach State”. It is “The Empire State of the South”.

    Not that that’s much better, but at least it’s less fruity (not that there’s anything wrong with that.)

  21. This ranks right up there on the stupidity level with the Hispanic woman who may get jail time for taking a picture of her breast feeding her baby (child pornography)

    Fuck zero tolerance laws

  22. Mark,
    At my school lots of people had those until 94 or 95. After that, it was California state law that anyone caught with a knife on campus would be expelled, zero tolerance. If the blade was longer than 2.5 inches then they would call the cops. A guy I knew got expelled because he was caught with a Swiss army knife he used for stage tech stuff in his bag after he got busted for distributing a parody paper about the teachers and administration (there’s one at every school). They couldn’t do anything to him because of the flyer, so they got him with the knife. The public school system is really idiotic sometimes.

  23. EMAIL:
    DATE: 01/25/2004 04:41:29
    There are no weird people – some just require more understanding.

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