Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Meridian "taxi service".

Image for the news resultThe Field Negro education series continues:

"Police officers in Meridian, Mississippi, were spending so much time hauling handcuffed students from school to the local juvenile jail that they began describing themselves as “just a taxi service.”

It wasn’t because schools in this east Mississippi town were overrun by budding criminals or juvenile superpredators—not by a long shot. Most of the children were arrested and jailed simply for violating school rules, often for trivial offenses.

One 15-year-old girl, for example, was suspended and sent to the Lauderdale County Juvenile Detention Center for a dress code violation. Her jacket was the wrong shade of blue. A boy served a suspension in the juvenile lock-up for passing gas in the classroom. Another landed behind bars because he walked to the alternative school instead of taking the bus.
For many kids, a stint in “juvie” was just the beginning of a never-ending nightmare. Arrests could lead to probation. Subsequent suspensions were then considered probation violations, leading back to jail. And suspensions were a distinct possibility in a district where the NAACP found a suspension rate that was more than 10 times the national average.

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Justice filed suit to stop the “taxi service” in Meridian’s public schools, where 86 percent of the students are black. The DOJ suit, still unresolved, said children were being incarcerated so “arbitrarily and severely as to shock the conscience.”
We should all be shocked.


The reality, though, is that Meridian’s taxi service is just one example of what amounts to a civil rights crisis in America: a “school-to-prison pipeline” that sucks vulnerable children out of the classroom at an alarming rate and funnels them into the harsh world of police, courts and prison cells.
For many children, adolescent misbehavior that once warranted a trip to the principal’s office—and perhaps a stint in study hall—now results in jail time and a greater possibility of lifelong involvement with the criminal justice system. It should surprise no one that the students pushed into this pipeline are disproportionately children of color, mostly impoverished, and those with learning disabilities.
The story of Meridian is more than an example of school discipline run amok. It’s a key to understanding how the United States has attained the dubious distinction of imprisoning more people—and a larger share of its population—than any other country.

It’s one reason why the United States today has a quarter of the world’s prisoners—roughly 2.2 million people—while representing just 5 percent of its total population. And it helps explain an unprecedented incarceration rate that is far and away the highest on the planet, some five to 10 times higher than other Western democracies.

As the managing attorney for the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Mississippi office, I’ve seen firsthand the devastation wrought by the school-to-prison pipeline, and the senselessness of it all.
When SPLC advocates began interviewing children at the juvenile detention center in Meridian in 2009 we were investigating children being pepper-sprayed by guards when they were in their cells and posing no threat. But we kept hearing stories from students who were pushed out of school and into cells for noncriminal, minor school infractions. These stories would eventually spark the DOJ lawsuit and a thorough examination of how the “pipeline” operated in this town.
***
The origins of the school-to-prison pipeline can be traced to the 1990s when reports of juvenile crime began to stoke fears of “superpredators”—described in the 1996 book Body Count as “radically impulsive, brutally remorseless youngsters” with little regard for human life. The superpredator concept, based on what some critics have derided as junk science, is now known to be a complete myth. Former Princeton professor and Bush administration official John DiIulio, the Body Count co-author who coined the term, admitted to The New York Times in 2001 that his theory of sharply rising juvenile violence had been wrong.

But the damage had been done. As these fears took root and mass school shootings like the one at Columbine made headlines, not only did states enact law laws to increase punishment for juvenile offenders, schools began to adopt “zero-tolerance” discipline policies that imposed automatic, pre-determined punishments for rule breakers.

At the same time, states across America were adopting harsh criminal laws, including long mandatory prison sentences for certain crimes and “three strikes” laws that led to life sentences for repeat offenders. The term “zero tolerance” was, in fact, adopted from policing practices and criminal laws that focused on locking up minor offenders as a way to stem more serious crime.

Somewhere along the way, as local police departments began supplying on-duty “school resource officers” to patrol hallways, educators began to confuse typical adolescent misbehavior with criminality. Schools became, more or less, a part of the criminal justice system. With police officers stalking the halls and playgrounds, teachers and principals found it easy to outsource discipline. Almost overnight, a schoolyard scuffle could now land a kid in a jail cell. "[More]

Politico is not one of my favorite online magazines, but this article was on point.

And yes, we need to have this discussion.  

*Pic from Politico.




47 comments:

Anonymous said...

Black students get suspended more because they misbehave at much higher rates than other races.

Blacks get arrested more because they commit crimes at much higher rates than other races.

End of story.

Get real or get lost.

focusedpurpose said...

"Amendment XIII
(The Thirteenth Amendment was ratified December 6, 1865)

Section 1.

Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, EXCEPT as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist with the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction."

excerpt from the United States Constitution.

__________________

privatize the penal system...

make the music about criminality + immorality...

NOT a part of the ongoing liberation struggle as it has always been for Black Americans throughout history...

and we get what we got.

folk know we still in America, right?

the in plain sight information above = historical "improvement"...

acting surprised...

i will NOT.

here's what's so:

Black folk do each other more damage than anybody else would or even could.

the babies are now paying.

our destruction has effectively been outsourced...to other Black Americans no less-at ALL levels.

though folk will only shout about...

racism.

at the end of the day...it is not even about others. friends nor enemies.

it's about US.

it is written we are not to pray for Yah to come quick and finish this.

so...

it is my prayer that more of US- all colors- will turn to Him/His Word that humanity might be released from the claws that try to hold US all...

we need to have more than a discussion, really.

i pray Yah will be with US and save US.

US= humanity in that last sentence.

this post disturbs me to my soul to say the least...

if folk look they would see it is happening to all colors.

a privatized prison elsewhere in the land finds male officers doing whatever is clever to the female population they are charged with keeping under control.

take a look at the government officials + pedophilia- world wide- and it becomes abundantly clear. there is something really wrong going on here.

a battle of Good and evil. we war not against the flesh, indeed.

i pray the whole host of heaven and Messiah Himself will intercede for US in Messiah's Mighty Name.

Blessings all!

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Field,

Remember this. When one creates phantoms in his own mind for himself, when one invites the possibility of the White Devil into his world, then one must nourish those self-created monsters with his own life-blood, his own energy, and his own creativity, health and drive, without ever satisfying the hunger of the fear they create. For it cannot be satisfied as long as it embraces you.

In the end, bitterness will only drain you completely of your health and vitality. Have you truly lost the vision of this garden of beauty and adventure in which you live? Have you lost your memory of those who enjoyed your earlier, less bitter blogging?

I sincerely hope you find your path again to truth and to stop running from the fantasies you have clearly created out of your own apparently furtile imagination. Pull yourself together. Be a man. Get back to the sport and bring your "A Game" this time. Don't be so weak in the face of a small challenge or the wrongs you perceive. Rise above it. You can do this. I know you can.

Sincerely,

Asmondius

Anonymous said...

Asmondius, Get real...You know nothing nor are you connected to the human heart. You are deluded.

Anonymous said...

FP, you can't tell me you are not educated. You are too sophisticated and clear thingking to not hold a degree.

So come clean: What degree(s) do you hold?

Anonymous said...

Good News! Netanyahu was re-elected. His trip to Congress proved fruitful. He also made Obama look weak and humiliated.

Why do these things happen to a bm like Obama? Does anybody know? It just doesn't make sense.

Lt. Commander Johnson said...

Now, field.

You have just blogged one of the best.

I agree with everything you said, (except trying it to appear as a "racial thing".)

Cops suck, whether you be black, white, brown, or yellow. They will bust you for whatever they can get. That's how they live.

I know several. And they boast about their jobs as if it was a game.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

As is these students don't have enough problems being from the Sip.
Also too many people are making money on prisons. Too much profit motive in health and corrections.

Anonymous said...

Pilot and FP:

I keep hearing concerns about private prisons fueling over-incarceration of black people. While I believe private prisons are indeed a bad idea, it also seems like this has reached the level of a conspiracy theory in the black community.

Most black inmates are not being housed in privately run prisons. In fact, the private incarceration industry now makes the majority of its profits off of holding illegal immigrants for the DHS prior to deportation, rather than jailing criminals.

The over-incarceration of black people in this country is not mainly being driven by private shareholder greed. It is being driven by the same two factors as ever for the past few decades:

1) lack of economic opportunity for black people pushing them into street crime

2) "tough on crime" legislation creating ever-harsher penalties for ever more minor offenses, motivated by fear of crime and especially black crime. Some of those penalties were referenced in this article (mandatory minimum sentences, three strikes laws, etc).

I think there is a sensitivity toward private prisons in the black community because of the history of Jim Crow chain gangs in the early 20th century being used as a sneaky way of continuing slavery on a smaller scale, after it had been officially abolished. People are afraid this could somehow happen again.

To date, though, those fears aren't justified.

Anonymous said...

To back up what I said about who is in private prisons, here is a quote from an ACLU report three years ago:

Today, for-profit companies are responsible for approximately 6% of state prisoners, 16% of federal prisoners, and, according to one report, nearly half of all immigrants detained by the federal government. In 2010, the two largest private prison companies alone received nearly $3 billion dollars in revenue, and their top executives, according to one source, each received annual compensation packages worth well over $3 million.

Source:
https://www.aclu.org/prisoners-rights/banking-bondage-private-prisons-and-mass-incarceration

Again, relatively few criminal defenders are incarcerated in private prisons. But a TON of illegal immigrants are.

Anonymous said...

*criminal offenders

(although some rabid right-wingers might not see much difference between criminal defenders and offenders, haha)

Anonymous said...

One more point I'd like to make is that foolish trolls seem inclined to blame liberals for idiotic "zero tolerance" policies in schools, as if these were part and parcel of do-gooder liberal nanny-state thinking, like taxes on cigarettes.

They are not. The origin of "zero tolerance," as referred to in this article, lies with conservatives, out of fear of mythical juvenile "superpredators" and mass-shooting incidents.

As ever, when conservatives fuck up, they pretend they didn't do it and shift the blame onto someone else.

Señor Hector said...

"At the same time, states across America were adopting harsh criminal laws, including long mandatory prison sentences for certain crimes and “three strikes” laws that led to life sentences for repeat offenders. The term “zero tolerance” was, in fact, adopted from policing practices and criminal laws that focused on locking up minor offenders as a way to stem more serious crime."


Which has resulted in Amerikkka having the lowest crime rates in decades.

The left wants to take us back to the bad ole days in which their policies resulted in cities having murders and rapes in the thousands and gangs running cities.

Field and his butt buddies continue to dance around the real issues.They refuse to ask the questions that most in Amerikkka want to know-


Why are blacks so violent? After all, the most violent places to live in this country have majority black populations.

Why are all these violent cities ran by Democrats?

Virgina said...

Just wondering the cost of hiring a school police officer vs another school councelor. I can see teachers abusing the system.

Señor Hector said...

Anonymous said...


One more point I'd like to make is that foolish trolls seem inclined to blame liberals for idiotic "zero tolerance" policies in schools, as if these were part and parcel of do-gooder liberal nanny-state thinking, like taxes on cigarettes.

They are not. The origin of "zero tolerance," as referred to in this article, lies with conservatives, out of fear of mythical juvenile "superpredators" and mass-shooting incidents.

As ever, when conservatives fuck up, they pretend they didn't do it and shift the blame onto someone else.


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Look again hero. "Zero Tolerance" goes back much further. You will find it was Democrat hands who planted the seeds of "Zero Tolerance".

Of course, when the left fucks up, they pretend they didn't do it and shift the blame to Conservatives.

HA!

Yīshēng said...

This country is slowly rotting in it's own cesspool of racism and greed.

Sharon from WI said...

How can I make paragraph breaks in HTML? No snide remarks, please.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

Sure anon @0640 but why were "tough on crime" laws passed? There is always a profit motive and a lobby for most laws that are created or changed.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

"The worst part is that once captured by the prison industry, inmates are forced to work for pennies an hour, providing cheap labor for some of the most profitable enterprises in the world, including the U.S. Military."

http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/21694-shocking-facts-about-americas-for-profit-prison-industry

Not paranoid but sometimes it does help.

Bill said...


The Field Negro said...
Most of the children were arrested and jailed simply for violating school rules, often for trivial offenses.


These rules you are complaining about are from Obama voting white dumbocrats.

Dumbocrat politicians get all the teacher union contributions, and you think dumbocrats will call out their cash cow?
Thinking about a career in comedy Field Negro?

https://www.opensecrets.org/bigpicture/toporgs.php?cycle=ALL


One thing for sure... if teachers and their unions were the rethugs cash cow Field Negro would be mentioning the political party that controls the educational system.

Bill said...


Sharon from WI said...

How can I make paragraph breaks in HTML? No snide remarks, please.


with no spaces...

< b r >

Hypocrisy Double standard! said...

Will Bill mention Aaron Schock? Wanna bet he will? I mean he's not a hypocrite is he?

Hypocrisy Double standard! said...

One thing for sure...if Aaron Schock was a Dem Bill would be all over him.

Sharon from WI said...

Thanks, Bill! :-)

Sharon from WI said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Limpbaugh said...

Judges who accept bribes from for profit prisons are the ones who should be jailed.

Sharon from WI said...


Apologists dismissing the fate of these children aside, any reasonable person would concede that actionable classroom and schoolyard offenses are typically the purview of the principal’s office, not the police and certainly not the prison system.


While apologists make unfounded, snide remarks about the criminality of black children, studies have shown that black students are more likely to face suspension or expulsion than white children for the same offenses.


They also ignore the effect of the rise of the privatized prison industry, which is more concerned about its bottom line than justice or rehabilitation. They ignore the recent scandal involving the Pennsylvania judge who was found guilty in February of racketeering for taking a $1 million kickback from the builder of for-profit prisons for juveniles. http://tinyurl.com/3k9clcx The conviction of Judge Mark Ciavarella is mentioned in this very article, so it’s quite evident there is no reaching such people.

For the rest of us, there is a problem indeed to consider. Even if one puts race aside, most people would consider draconian sending a kid to a juvenile detention facility for wearing the wrong shade of blue or passing gas in a classroom. Zero tolerance policies in schools may have their place, but these policies must be complemented with common sense, otherwise these policies become ridiculous while having a drastic effect on the affected students and their families.

There was a case in Louisiana some years ago in which a student got into serious trouble for giving Midol to her friend who was suffering from menstrual cramps.
This is matter that my Michael, a teacher, and I share a disagreement. He contends that the student could have caused for her friend an allergic reaction and the matter should have been handled in the nurse’s office.

But the girl’s punishment had nothing to do with such a concern; she was treated as if she were pushing heroin on campus instead of the administration seeing the chain of events for what they were—the girl was helping a friend in need. And anyone with a scintilla of common sense would know that Midol is a pain reliever that’s not taken recreationally to get high. You might have other troubles taking more than what’s recommended when it comes to Midol, but getting high is not one of them. http://tinyurl.com/lqgwadw

A more recent case involves a Virginia 11-year-old boy who has been suspended for a year for possession of marijuana. The kicker to the story is the student indeed had a leaf, but it was tested and shown that it was not marijuana. Yet, while court charges have been dropped the suspension stands. Understandably, the boy’s parents, both teachers, are suing the school district for malicious prosecution and violation of due process. http://tinyurl.com/ola8eds


In yet another recent case, a Texas boy got into trouble over a ring after acting out a scene from The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. He had taken the ring to school and told a friend that it would render him invisible. This make-believe play led to the fourth grader being charged with making a terroristic threat. http://tinyurl.com/o2yhau2

In the aforementioned cases, white students have been affected. So this is happening to our kids across the board—and for some time, now. It’s just that the Meridian, Mississippi matter shows that black students have been really getting it in the neck for minor offenses.

Sharon from WI said...

Added to say Judge Ciavarella was sentenced in 2013.

Bill said...


Detroit parents receive letter warning children could be suspended
Kids from Coleman A. Young Elementary in Detroit were sent home with a letter scolding parents for missing a meeting and saying their kids could be punished as a result.


http://www.clickondetroit.com/news/detroit-parents-receive-letter-warning-children-could-be-suspended/31532274

I wonder how many white NRA tea party rethugs on the Detroit school board thought this was a good idea.

Hypocrisy Double standard! said...

You gonna mention Aaron Schock Bill or are you going to disappoint us by admitting you're a hypocrite?

Anonymous said...

Bill is a partisan hack. Schocking.

Bill is a F'n Idiot said...

"I wonder how many white NRA tea party rethugs on the Detroit school board thought this was a good idea."

White NRA tea baggers are too busy trying to get guns in the hands of drunk SAE frat boys.

anotherbozo said...

Hey, if I were some kid who wore the wrong color jacket and got unfairly collared by police and further humiliated and abused, when they finally let me go I'd want to... get revenge, go commit a crime!

Hey, that's the pattern, right?

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

"Hey, if I were some kid who wore the wrong color jacket and got unfairly collared by police and further humiliated and abused, when they finally let me go I'd want to... get revenge, go commit a crime!"


Or sue the shit out of em and make money. That's the American way.

Bill said...


PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...
Or sue the shit out of em and make money. That's the American way.


Just imagine the family of Michael Brown sues the city of Ferguson and wins a bunch of money.

The government employees will still be receiving their checks.

Taxpayer money that could have been used to help poor people is being used to pay the Michael Brown family.

Poor people hurt the most.

The Government way. They set the system up.

PilotX:Freeing slaves from the Republican plantation since the 70's said...

Good posts Sharon.

Faith_and_Fairness said...

Blogger Sharon from WI is a much needed voice for this forum. I do recall the news item regarding a few PA judges who were sentenced for taking kickbacks. The link Sharon provides to the Forbes article is a compelling read indeed.

We should all be especially outraged at prison systems constructed mostly for profit ventures as opposed to dispensing the proper justice and reform.

I also agree racism is not the only contributing factor. Any serious reform must address classism so that the poor and oppressed are not slipping through cracks in terms securing alternatives far more effective than prison.

field negro said...

Bill will not mention his friend from Illinois because Bill is a republican. That's alright Bill. We all have our crosses to carry.;)

To the anon above who called me "bitter" and is worried about the tone of my writing of late. I say fret not. Life is good.

And, in case u haven't noticed, I haven't been doing a lot of writing.

But thanks for still checking into the fields.

Bill is a F'n Idiot said...

"Taxpayer money that could have been used to help poor people is being used to pay the Michael Brown family."

When has tax payer money ever been used to help the poor? You are such a dumbfuck Bill. And we see you don't mention rethuglican malfeasance. Hypocrite!

Faith_and_Fairness said...

On the othe hand, Bill brings up a valid point regarding what could happen if the family of Michael wins a huge monetary lawsuit.

However, whether the taxpayers reside Ferguson, MO or Phila., PA, it's the responsibilty of the city leadership to make sure those who are essentially working for the taxpayers do not engage in the kind of unlawful acts that result in huge monetory settlements.

And this is same kind of accountability required at the state and federal level as well.

Bill said...


field negro said...
Bill will not mention his friend from Illinois because Bill is a republican. That's alright Bill. We all have our crosses to carry.;)


Mention what friend? Aaron Schock? Never met him.
Since he had to quit, why isn't the government also pressing charges and putting him in jail?

Never mind, that's the system the Big Government wants.


Hhhmm, interesting...

I don't remember you mentioning your friend from Florida, Robert Menendez. You know, the one that spoke up against Obama and then got arrested.

No doubt just a simple oversight because of all the time you're enjoying with your wife.

No need to thank me for helping keep you fair and balanced. :)

Bill said...


Faith_and_Fairness said...
And this is same kind of accountability required at the state and federal level as well.


From the same ruling class that has made insider trading legal for members of congress?

Anonymous said...

"On the othe hand, Bill brings up a valid point regarding what could happen if the family of Michael wins a huge monetary lawsuit."

Really? We should be worried about a few millions as opposed to the billions that are wasted daily? If our police were better trained and didn't engage in racist practices and shoot unarmed civilians we could save these millions right? And don't worry, Ferguson will pass along those fees. Bill is being disingenuous. Also F&F what would you do if a family member of yours was shot down by police unnecessarily? Would you be ok with a shrug and a "my bad"?

Hypocrisy Double standard! said...

"I don't remember you mentioning your friend from Florida, Robert Menendez. You know, the one that spoke up against Obama and then got arrested.

No doubt just a simple oversight because of all the time you're enjoying with your wife."

Ah, Bill with the hypocrisy meter on 100. Why didn't you mention Schock? You're not married so that couldn't be it. Probably too busy trolling conservative websites because a dem is in the WH huh?

Anonymous said...

Starbucks has taken the initiative to begin the discussion about race and racism. Starting this Friday, a big promotion to encourage customers to discuss one the most important discussion that we cowards have not been able to talk about:

"A discussion about race"...Enjoy your Starbucks coffee folks. And please, no comment from the peanut gallery(Josh).

Joshua is annoying said...

"And please, no comment from the peanut gallery(Josh)."

How dare you prevent Josh from spewing 10,000 words that no one will ever read.

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