||[Aug. 7th, 2007|01:06 pm]
|||||Call Me - Blondie||]|
The registrar of Nigeria's university entrance exams reported in May that almost 2,000 of the students had been caught in cheating scams. [Agence France-Presse, 6-1-07]
Okay, so that amused me just because I wonder how many of those 2000 are now sending emails out with important business matters.
Have you cheated in school?
I refuse to answer!
And Neighbours! I love this video.
I don't really think cheating is wrong. In real life, when are we ever going to have to know how to graph tangents in general, let alone without any help? Or when are we going to HAVE to know how to balance chemical equations?
And with pretty much anything we do once we leave school, we'll be able to access outside help, so what good is it doing us?
I guess the whole you have to rely on yourself thing, and you can't use other's to get your through life...
But I still don't think cheating is wrong. On tests and stuff at least. You can't have people write papers for you and think for you, but when you forget how to do something utterly useless, I don't see a problem in getting help.
I did this play called "Eurydice Goes to College" - where these two college freshman girls end up coming down to a battle of ethics - they both have a nerdy high school background, but one of gets this grand plan that she needs to find her husband while she's getting her degree, so that after college she can have her family while her body is still good, and then get her law degree later. So she finds this exclusive website that provides essays on whatever topic you need on a barter basis that you trade in your old "A" papers. And so she is going thru her freshman year partying and becoming this huge socialite AND maintaining, while her best friend is up all night studying and barely maintaining Cs, oblivious to the whole thing. And the cheating one justifies it in that Martin Luther King plagiarized his college thesis because he was spending his time doing something more worthwhile - "what would you rather have? a free country or an honest thesis" or something like that. BAsically saying that its okay to cheat on this bullshit stuff if you already have the smarts, as long as your plan is to do something grander than "The AMerican Short Story 313" or whatever.
"AND maintaining an A average" that is.
Interesting. *blink* I'd like to read this play.
It's wrong for one very simple reason (plus a bunch of other, more complex ones). It is dishonest. Cheaters are lying about what they know or have done, for no reason other than to make themselves look more accomplished than they are.
If they believe that the information isn't necessary for them to know, they should take a stand and say it. Instead, they go around meekly pretending that they believe the information is important to know and dishonestly acting as if they know it when they don't.
Also, while it is applicable in some cases, I generally don't buy the argument that we shouldn't have to prove an ability to do something on our own because we may be able to get help from others. If, for example, I cheat on a test proving my knowledge of the meanings of road signs, and in fact I know the meanings of none of those signs, what am I going to do when I'm on the road and I suddenly need to know the meaning of a sign? Take the time to look it up? Call a friend and ask? That's just one example.
... Actually, I'm not going to spend the time to write about other aspects of this right now.
But, in my eyes, it's very simple: When we cheat, we tell others a lie about ourselves, without a good reason—and, with any luck, it also gives others, and us, a clue about who we really are and what we really stand for.