1975

Sometime during one’s years of high school attendance, taxpayers residing in the area became increasing disgruntled with their ever increasing school tax bill. So one year when the annual school budget was presented to the people for a “vote” to approve or disapprove the budget, the people “voted” against additional school tax increases. A few revisions were made to the budget by the school district but still the budget was defeated. In September, when school began for the next year, one noted that it appeared that all of the administrators and teachers were still employed at the school. However, the janitorial staff was greatly reduced resulting in the school becoming very dirty. I stated to mother and father that the school was becoming a “pigsty” because the school budget was defeated by the voters. One then began to recognize a system where the lower paid workers were dismissed to create a hardship for the students and parents while the higher paid workers remained in their jobs. This strategy employed over the years, resulted in the “voter” approval of most school budgets.

In the late spring of this year, two girl friends and I decided not to attend school and drive to the New Jersey shore instead. We convinced our parents that no new school curriculum was being presented, as the school year was coming to a close. Basically, the days at the end of the school year were spent in reviewing material for final exams that my friends and I believed that we already knew. Leaving early on a bright sunny clear day in June, I drove with two friends seated in the front seat of the car, listening to music played on an eight track tape player, to a beach area along the New Jersey coastline. On that day, I felt that life could not become much better. We enjoyed our day at the beach and drove toward home stopping along the way for dinner. During dinner one friend suggested that we take a small detour to view the church where she attended mass and participated as a member in youth activities. This girl was a Mormon who spoke frequently of that religion and the certain practices connected to Mormonism. On our way to view the Church, a driver did not see a stop sign and so drove within several feet of my car not allowing me enough time to stop my vehicle. My car collided with this car resulting in an accident with visible physical injuries to my friends. One girl’s leg was cut by the tape player and the other girl’s head struck the windshield, resulting in a bump on her head. I sustained unapparent injuries to my neck and back. An ambulance was summoned to bring my two friends to the hospital. I asked about the passengers of the other car and was told that they were an elderly couple, and that the wife on the passenger side of the car suffered a non-specified injury. Mother and father arrived at the scene and drove me home. Fortunately, no one appeared to be seriously injured. I had a sense of guilt over this incident and thought perhaps that God was punishing me for not attending school that day and for participating in boisterous behavior. My car was out of commission for about two months during the investigation and repair process. After this accident, the car was always mechanical trouble.

A friend became involved in a dangerous activity unbeknownst to the friends parents. One advised this friend to quit this pursuit, citing the possibility of serious injury or death should an error occur. The friend cited to me “back up” safety measures and exclaimed that the friend would continue to participate in the activity. Discussing this situation with mother, I stated that one was undecided about whether or not to inform the friends’ parents about this friends’ engagement in this dangerous activity because the friends’ parents used corporal punishment to discipline this teenager, instead of other less physically painful measures. So, one decided not to inform the friends’ parents because of their method