Thursday, November 30, 2006

And we wonder why no one does anything about adult crime

This morning, I was in a medical waiting room and more or less forced to watch "The Montel Willams Show." He had little girl and her mother on. The little girl has sensory autonomic neuropathy, which prevents her from feeling pain, and she scratched her eye seriously when she was a baby. She has worse problems now: The children at school "test" her disorder by kicking, punching, scratching, and slapping her. For good measure, they pushed her down a flight of stairs. Her mother taught her to say "ouch" but of course, the other kids knew the "ouch" wasn't real.

The school has obviously done nothing at all to help this child. Her perpetrators continue to go to school with her. Just as obviously, the perpetrators' parents have done nothing. I have frequently written about the failure of schools, law enforcement officials and parents to stop abuse and assault at schools. I deal with this almost every week in my practice.

Children can be very mean to one another--we all know that. But endangering the life of a child is beyond mean; it is sadistic. These are the children our culture is producing.

As I watched the show, I wondered why the girl's parents hadn't taken more action. There was a woman in the waiting room with me, and she was visibly shocked by the material on the screen. She looked at me and shook her head. "It happens all the time," I told her. "No one does anything--not the schools, not the police (in our city, the police recently told a mother who was assaulted by an ex-boyfriend that they didn't intervene in cases of "puppy love"--the mother did not pursue a complaint against the officer), not even the parents."

"If it were my kid, I said, "someone would be in big trouble (actually, I said something stronger, but I'm cleaning it up a bit). "Well," the other woman said, "maybe after it happened several times." "No," I told her. "Once would be enough."


My mother wasn't the best in the world but I remember when I was in the first grade. I had only been out of the hospital for a few months, (polio) and the other children couldn't believe that I couldn't walk without my braces and the metal crutches and one day, one of the boys grabbed my crutches and kept yelling at me to walk and I was frozen, unable to move my legs and knowing that I was going to fall and my brother, who was a few years older, ran to my rescue. The next day, my mother marched up to the school and insisted that the principal do something to make sure that it never happened again. After that, there was always a teacher standing within a few feet of me. You're right, children are and were cruel. No child should ever have to be subjected to the cruelty.

By Blogger zelda1, at 3:49 PM  

Endangering the life of a child is beyond sadistic. It's CRIMINAL!

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