May 22nd, 2020

mood - wtf (percival): tunes84

Graduations are dumb

We got some news today about Alex's graduation. They moved it out to June 22, and they're doing it with the kids and no audience, and they're going to livestream it for people to watch off-campus. Personally, I think it's a horrible idea. Alex's class has 594 kids in it. Not all of them will show, but most of them will. That's a lot of kids. They won't fit on the field with social distancing, and they definitely won't fit inside anywhere. They only way to make it work is in shifts, but there's no indication that's how they're going to do it.

But, there are a TON of parents who are absolutely livid that family isn't allowed. They act like we don't need to still keep practicing social distancing. And they certainly don't realize how many kids are in that class. At a normal graduation, they're restricted to five guests - no exceptions - and the spillover for parking lines all the neighboring streets. People have to start arriving an hour and a half early, and we still end up running out of room in the stands so they have to line the fences, crammed in like sardines.

I dunno. I know I'm an anomaly about graduations. Craig and I have never seen the big deal with them. They feel unnecessary and self-serving, and they're certainly not enjoyable to sit through. I was actually glad that we might not have to worry about attending Alex's. Alicia and Alex don't see the big deal, either. What matters is the diploma, not the pomp that goes along with it. Substance over style.

I realize that some of this comes from places of privilege. It also stems from our firm belief that Americans waste too much energy celebrating EVERYTHING. Doing so diminishes value on the truly important things that should be celebrated. Graduations fall into that category for us, but again, we recognize that comes from a place where we see education as necessary and expected.

I've thought about this too much today. And argued about it with Alicia (who was very quick to tell me about all of our privilege lol). But I still think advocating for a social gatherings this summer of any size over household size is selfish and irresponsible. Now, I *could* get behind individual graduations, where people show up in a single car at a designated time, go inside to watch the graduate get the diploma and move the tassel, then leave again, without ever coming into contact with another group. But no, that's not good enough for these people either.