Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Social Security and Family Lore

My late father related to me countless years ago the following story about his younger brother John (the same uncle I quoted in a post this last Sunday).

As a sophomore in a NYC high school civics class in 1935, uncle John noted that taxes taken for Social Security were not put into a special fund. It was put into the general fund. It will be spent and then you won't have it when you need it. The upshot was that his teacher kicked him out of class and sent him to the principal's office.

My Dad related what transpired when my grandmother had to come to school. "I know my son. When he says something it is usually true. Was he wrong?" The answer came back in a fashion that implied "No; but that's not the issue." Grandma said "Then it is not my son who should have been sent here. Your teacher should be in here begging to keep his job." .
For this post I asked Uncle John for more information.

He filled in the gist of what he said in class. He says he received two hours of detention. He couldn't attest to what my Dad told me because he doesn't recall it. He admits his mother was forced to come to grade school many times, but never when he was in high school. However he also says my Dad was not known to embellish stories.

It's possible nobody ever told John about what his Mother had said so as not to further encourage him. But they told Dad because, John being much smaller and less intimidating than Dad in every way, everybody in the family was proud of John's courage and feistiness. My Dad saw a lot of Uncle John in me. And I did become an engineer like John, and I do notice flaws that others miss or choose to ignore.

I always thought my Dad thought I was enough of a PITA, so I can hardly imagine why he'd encourage me more in that direction by telling me of this event.

For Part 1: This Post Cost Me $2200
For Part 2: Part of the Reason for Shunning Social Security


  1. No man.
    "I always thought my Dad thought I was enough of a PITA"
    You're my brother.


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