Tuesday, April 26, 2005

What Did You Learn In School Today? My Miranda Rights

A cold shudder shook the marbled halls of IM Central after reading this. It was the kind of shudder that comes after a narrowly averted catastrophe, like just having removed the Playboy from under the mattress, then finding out mom has decided to wash sheets.

We feel truly blessed that our days as denizens of the Corporacation system are long past because, given our rather jaded history as students, we're sure that were we treading the high halls of academe today we would have a rap sheet longer than, as our old daddy used to say, a lumberjack's reach at the dinner table.

If we were inclined to think about such things, we might think that a trend is developing in the approach schools use to get students' minds right with the program. We refer the curious reader here, here and here for examples.

Now, we are not members of the tin foil anti-mind control beanie delegation, at least not outside of happy hour, but then, we're not school age either. Take the kindergartner mentioned above. A school video shows the girl making a mess in the assistant principal's office at the school and disobeying requests to behave. She also climbs on a table.

OK. Nothing strange so far. If we had been arrested every time we made a mess, or climbed on something we weren't supposed to climb on, well, let's just say that until we were eleven we thought our name was "Get Down From There This Instant."

The article says that a police officer recognized the girl from a previous incident. "I had been called to the school once before because she was stomping on empty milk cartons in the playground and making them pop loudly. I knew she was trouble right away, so I called for backup and threw the cuffs on her."

Unfortunately, the handcuffs didn't work. John Trevena, a lawyer for the girl's mother, said "They had to use plastic restraints because the standard-issue handcuffs would not fit a five-year-old."

A police spokesperson explained that "Handcuffs aren't made for five-year-olds, because five-year-olds aren't supposed to be handcuffed, so from now on we're going with the Taser." Man. If Mr. Holt had one of those back in seventh grade we'd still be smoking.

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