Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
Posted at 6:52 PM ET, 06/17/2010

Talking points won't heal D.C.'s youth

By washingtonpost.com editors

By Gabriel Feldman
Washington

In his June 12 op-ed column, “D.C.’s juvenile justice farce,” Colbert I. King quoted D.C. Council member David A. Catania (I-At Large) addressing the root causes of youth violence in the city: “Kids are being raised without the parenting and support they need to develop socially.”

Mr. King’s columns consistently fail to consider our city’s problems with similar understanding. He seems content to blame the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS) and perpetuate a culture of fear. Nationwide, recidivism rates are high, and more jail time seldom rehabilitates youth offenders. Despite the best efforts at reform, most correctional facilities remain violent and punitive. Eventually, almost all offenders will have to reenter the community.

I await more journalism from The Post that examines how the lack of support leads so many youth to end up in DYRS care in the first place. The vague “professional therapeutic treatment” and “mental health intervention” that Mr. King trumpets are not so different from the therapeutic goals developed by DYRS in recent years. Unfortunately, it’s harder to address these issues than it is to write alarmist columns in the paper.

The writer was a teacher at the Oak Hill Youth Center from 2007 to 2009.


By washingtonpost.com editors  | June 17, 2010; 6:52 PM ET
Categories:  D.C., D.C. politics, HotTopic, Mayor Fenty, crime, guns, media, public health  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: National Pinball Museum headed to Georgetown?
Next: McDonnell makes case for rider seats on Metro board

Comments

Like all delusional leftwing do-gooders, Ms. Feldman continues to believe that fatherless, imbecilic armed robbers and murderers can somehow be "rehabilitated."

This is nonsense. This vermin was doomed at birth and there's no saving them now -- no matter how much tax money we waste in trying.

That's why I'd personally prefer summary public executions of incorrigible young thugs, precluding said thugs from breeding and perhaps dissuading other thugs and would-be thugs from perpetrating future crimes. But I realize my policy preference is relatively harsh and am willing to compromise.

Thus I call for the establishment within the MPD of a black-ops death squad that would more quietly disappear these doomed-at-birth lifetime burdens to society? Bodies could be disposed of by air well out over the Chesapeake to the benefit of the fish stock, also making this commonsense policy of self-defense quite "green." What's not to like?

Posted by: mckdarrenDC | June 18, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Like all delusional leftwing do-gooders, Ms. Feldman continues to believe that fatherless, imbecilic armed robbers and murderers can somehow be "rehabilitated."
This is nonsense. This vermin was doomed at birth and there's no saving them now -- no matter how much tax money we waste in trying.
That's why I'd personally prefer summary public executions of incorrigible young thugs, precluding said thugs from breeding and perhaps dissuading other thugs and would-be thugs from perpetrating future crimes. But I realize my policy preference is relatively harsh and am willing to compromise.
Thus I call for the establishment within the MPD of a black-ops death squad that would more quietly disappear these lifetime burdens to society. Bodies could be disposed of by air well out over the Chesapeake to the benefit of the fish stock, also making this commonsense policy of self-defense quite "green." What's not to like?

Posted by: mckdarrenDC | June 18, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

The simple truth is we're throwing more and more money at the bueauarcy who's supposed to be supervision these young offenders and getting less and less positive results. It may be time for a new approach.

Posted by: PracticalIndependent | June 18, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

There was a time when you begged the Judges NOT to commit them. Now, they welcome it laughing out the door. These kids do not remain in detention to await an out of home placement. There are 60 beds in secure detention. Where do they go? HOME to continue their reign of terror. Oh, a group home where they freely walk in and out of the door within 5-10 minutes of placement. Sadly, the Administrators are aware of their flight risk. But if the kid leaves, another can take their place. It is a revolving door! The Executive and Administrators need to be FIRED!!! These failed policies perpetuate more violence because there are NO consequences and NO way to compel the kids or their parents to participate in services! They are laughing at the public and the Courts.

Posted by: whatsreallygoingon | June 18, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company