Sandi Toksvig: “Jeremy: who says the children are better off with ‘a little buddha discipline’?”
Jeremy Hardy: “Somebody, the leader of the ATL, which is the Association of Teachers and Lecher- Lecturers, which is randy teachers, says that middle class children are pampered little buddhas. I don’t get the reference, coz you think of the Buddha as being a sort of semi-clad, obese, you know, bi-polar paperweight. Was the Buddha pampered, I thought he was ascetic, I thought he moaned around saying, ‘Oh no, no more for me, thanks, I’m the Buddha’, being, sort of quiet, you know, and modest and that. Well, we know that middle class parents indulge their children, because they all think, Michael is so bright, very, very bright, that’s why they’re doing so badly in school, because they’re so bright. The [teachers] don’t understand their answers, you see. I think the reason they misbehave is because they’re bored in the [classrooms], because they’re so bright. They’re not being stretched. Properly. And Hermione is so bright, and that’s why she misbehaves, I think, she’s so much brighter than the other children, and that’s why she sets fire to them, I think.”
“They won’t concentrate on the children of the poor, ‘Oh, these terrible chav children, it’s awful, they’re all gypsies and they’re terrible, and they park their caravans in the class room, with their illegal, violent dogs, and they’re all footpads and highwaymen, and it’s all terrible, and these days your child daren’t go to a state school, because they will be immediately impregnated, by some awful, beastly costermonger’s child, and it’s terrible, and actually, it turns out that the worst and most badly behaved, lazy and indulged children are children of the middle class, in schools, and it’s the industrious, hard-working children, barefoot children from those parts of the country where the old fish mines have closed that are much maligned, they’re the salt of the earth, and it’s all the children with stupid, made-up names like Hosepipe and Otterworm, where…”
“The ones who can afford it put their children in private schools, where they make them wear these preposterous uniforms, and you think, don’t make them [wear], that’s a stone magnet is that blazer, you’ve just turned your child, by making them wear vermillion trouser suits, and, you know, a sort of Norman French falconer’s gauntlet, you’ve made them into a pebble target!”
Toksvig: “Jeremy, you’ll have to stop, because I’m going to die!” May 1st, 2012.