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Truth is Stranger Than Fiction
October 1, 2005 — 1:00 pm

While re-reading The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert A. Heinlein, I came across this passage:

Let’s say a little one, too young to read, is caught with a stack of subversive literature-which happened more than once. Here’s how it would go, after Hazel indoctrinated a kid:

ADULT: “Baby, where did you get this?”
BAKER STREET IRREGULAR: “I’m not a baby, I’m a big boy!”
ADULT: “Okay, big boy, where did you get this?”
B.S.I.: “Jackie give it to me.”
ADULT: “Who is Jackie?”
B.S.I. “Jackie.”
ADULT: “But what’s his last name?”
B.S.I.: “Who?”
ADULT: “Jackie.”
B.S.I.: (scornfully) “Jackie’s a girl!”
ADULT: “All right, where does she live?”
B.S.I.: “Who?”

And so on around – To all questions key answer was of pattern: “Jackie give it to me.” Since Jackie didn’t exist, he (she) didn’t have a last name, a home address, nor fixed sex. Those children enjoyed making fools of adults, once they learned how easy it was.

At worst, literature was confiscated. Even a squad of Peace Dragoons thought twice before trying to “arrest” a small child.

I wonder how Mr. Heinlein would have written that passage were he alive today.

Student’s refusal to adjust cap leads to arrest, controversy

It is against school policy to wear hats sideways because it can be a sign of disrespect for authority, the police report said, but Marlon, who is Black, said that the rule is enforced selectively. According to a police report, he pointed to several White students whose hats were on sideways…

Morgan was taken to police headquarters, where he was fingerprinted, photographed and kept in a jail cell for several hours. He was held on suspicion of disorderly conduct, failure to obey a police officer, trespassing and interfering or disrupting an educational institution.

Third-grader arrested for disorderly conduct

The boy’s mother, Angelica Esquibel, said he was sent to the school office Thursday when he raised his voice to a teacher after hitting another child with the basketball.

The counselor told him officers would handcuff him and put him in a cell “until he changes his attitude,” Esquibel said.

Two officers tried to tell Jerry to go back to class and told him he had a choice – class or jail, Esquibel said. When the boy got upset and loud, they handcuffed him, she said.

The police report says Jerry was arrested, taken to jail, booked and released to his parents.

First-Grader Arrested, Handcuffed After Fight

Eight year-old Isaac Sutton got into a fight with a ten-year-old neighbor. The other boy’s mother called the cops and they arrested Isaac and took him to Juvie in handcuffs. Police held him until midnight before releasing him to his mother.

Boys arrested for stick figure drawings

Two Florida students, one 9 years old and the other 10 years old, were arrested and taken out of school in handcuffs. They are being charged with “making a written threat to kill or harm another person”, a felony.

One drawing showed the two boys standing on either side of the other boy and “holding knives pointed through” his body, according to a police report. The figures were identified by written names or initials.

St. Petersburg 5-year-old cuffed after school outburst

A 5 year-old student at Fairmount Park Elementary School in the Pinellas County School System acted up in class. Her teacher took away her jelly beans as punishment and the little girl had a tantrum. The police were called.

The students were counting jelly beans as part of a math exercise at Fairmount Park Elementary School when the little girl began acting silly. That’s when her teacher took away her jelly beans, outraging the child.

Minutes later, the 40-pound girl was in the back of a police cruiser, under arrest for battery. Her hands were bound with plastic ties, her ankles in handcuffs.

Handcuffing nine year-olds is okay according to Tuscaloosa officials

Another teacher overheard the argument from across the gymnasium and ordered the student to come speak with her, according to the complaint.

While the girl was walking to the teacher, Bostic intervened and ordered her to come speak with him, insisting that he handle the situation when the other teacher said she could take care of it.

According to the complaint, Bostic stood the girl in a doorway, placed handcuffs on her and told her: “This is what happens to people when they break the law,” and “This is how it feels to be in jail.”

Ohio police handcuff 5-year-old after bus fight

The suit accuses the bus driver of grabbing Finch around the neck, wrapping her legs around him and detaining him until Cincinnati police arrived.

Minutes later when officers [Douglas] Snider and [Kaneshia ] Howell arrived, the suit added, the child – who was hiding under one of the bus seats – was placed in and kept in handcuffs “for an unreasonable amount of time.” Video from a camera mounted inside the bus – a video the bus company has refused to share with Finch’s family and lawyer – could verify the allegations, the suit said.

The child was charged with no offense.

How, pray tell, does the “tough on crime” crowd justify these actions? Of course, those denizens of Heinlein’s “Luna” had their own solution:

One guard back-handed a small boy, cost him some teeth. Result: two guards dead, one Loonie dead.”

— Justin M. StoddardComments (0)

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