Monday, April 09, 2007

Childhood misbehavior is criminal

Bob Herbert, in the NYT tells us (you can also read it here)

"Last spring a number of civil rights organizations collaborated on a study of disciplinary practices in Florida schools and concluded that many of them, “like many districts in other states, have turned away from traditional education-based disciplinary methods — such as counseling, after-school detention, or extra homework assignments — and are looking to the legal system to handle even the most minor transgressions.”"

What does that mean? Bob Herbert tells us that too.

A six-year old girl threw a tantrum at her elementary school. When teachers could not quiet her down, they removed her from the class. The little girl kicked and pulled a teacher's hair. When the girl did not calm down, the teachers called the police. The police arrested the girl, handcuffed her (around her biceps, because the handcuffs would slip off her wrists), drove her to the county jail, took a mug shot and fingerprints, and charged her with felonious battery and two misdemeanors - disruption of school and resisting a law officer. (On seeing the police, the little girl had hidden under a table, and resisted being pulled out).

Bob Herbert protested to the police chief:

"“But she was 6,” I said.

The chief’s reply came faster than a speeding bullet: “Do you think this is the first 6-year-old we’ve arrested?”"


Only in this God-And-Common-Sense-Forsaken US of A!!!!!!