Speak Up! - View Question #445
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Question: If a teacher yells at you for something you didn't do, do you have the right to yell back?
Answer: If a teacher yells at you, whether you did something that deserves yelling at or not, you are not breaking any laws if you yell back. However, you might be breaking some very important rules:
1) the social rules for your actions and
2) the school's conduct rules.
All societies have social rules. In our country we eat with forks and spoons, which is a social rule. People who do not follow social rules are frowned upon and likely to lose standing (not being promoted for jobs or considered for class president) because of their unwillingness to follow social rules.
In addition, schools, companies and organizations often have written conduct rules that are designed to promote good relationships and preserve order. Most school and company handbooks list rules that prohibit raising your voice or 'talking back' to your teacher or a person in authority. If you yell back at a teacher, you're likely to be violating the school's rule against yelling at teachers. This could result in disciplinary action against you - a written warning, detention or worse.
So you should think hard before you yell back to a teacher or adult in authority. Yelling is often a sign of being out of control. If you yell back, you would be acting similarly out of control. Even if you weren't facing discipline for yelling back, you would still be looked at better for handling your anger by ignoring someone yelling at you.