Vampires at Oldest School In America

Colonists founded Boston Latin School in 1635. The school has long been known as a beacon of educational light in the black swamp of Boston schools. Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Cotton Mather were graduates. Ben Franklin is perhaps the most famous dropout from Boston Latin.

Controversy has rocked the school before. Boston Latin has been chastised for it’s notoriously difficult learning atmosphere and admissions standards. Now the school is confronted by a different threat. The blood sucking undead!

from Boston Globe

Two law enforcement officials with knowledge of the incident said a group of girls at the school had been bullying at least one other student who likes to dress in Goth-style, a vampirish look popularized by musician Marilyn Manson. The officials said the girls began spreading a rumor that the student was a vampire who had cut someone’s neck and sucked the blood.

When Boston police went to the school Wednesday on an unrelated matter, their presence fueled yet another rumor: that a vampire was being arrested, according to one of the law enforcement sources.

The rumors quickly blossomed into panic. People claimed they had been bitten. A “werewolf” threatened to bring a gun to school because of the bullying the vampire panic caused. Most of the older students laughed off the rumors and the reports of bullying. Even the student director of the anti-bullying campaign said she had not heard of any reports of bullying.

Most of us aren’t that far removed from high school to remember what an awkward time it can be. We are struggling to find out who we are, while at the same time trying to keep from being the gazelle that gets singled out of the herd. In the middle of all that, kids are pressured about how important high school performance is to the entire rest of their lives. One mother had this to say.

from Boston Globe

The students who attend these exam schools put enormous pressure on themselves. There are few adults at either school who have the luxury of having enough time to offer these kids the support that some of them need.

I don’t find it surprising that in the pressure cooker of Boston Latin and with all the worries these kids have about getting into college that some students’ anxieties took the form of bullying and meanness while others perhaps escaped into fantasy.

It’s not surprising some flock to the vampire myths. Vampires are outsiders, outcasts. In many stories they are romantic characters, but they are always powerful. They steal the power, the life force, of others. Is it any wonder this appeals to the disenfranchised?

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7 Responses

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