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Letter: Holding kids accountable is more complex than detention
02012018 LETTER

As soon as I read Gary Hulsey’s use of the words “PCish” and “in the old days,” I had a pretty good sense of who I was dealing with. And after conducting an exhaustive search of the internet for news articles regarding Washington State schools “doing away with punitive measures: detention,” and not finding any reference; it was confirmed. My suspicion is that Mr. Hulsey’s “news reports” were rantings from extreme right-wing radical racist “personalities” on the fringe of “news entertainment.

What I did find was a short sentence on legislative efforts in Washington State related to criminal justice: “A measure to prohibit the detention of youth for ‘status’ crimes (e.g., excessive truancy).” In this instance “detention” refers to jail or juvenile lockup and not accountability as Mr. Hulsey implies.

I also found an exhaustive report, “Students Not Suspects: The Need to Reform School Policing in Washington State,” on the prevalence of policing in Washington State schools.

Had Mr. Hulsey set aside his clear prejudice and ignorance and looked deeper into this issue prior to writing, he might have read the numerous reports and anecdotal evidence that demonstrates how prevention, intervention, support and rehabilitation programs provide far better results and reduced recidivism than simply imprisoning minors.

As to Mr. Hulsey’s declaration that the “Truth” can be found in the Old Testament, should we assume he is suggesting we should take Deuteronomy’s lead and allow “all the men of his town to stone him to death” should he have an overdue library book?

Scott McLendon

Gainesville

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