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Monday, January 28, 2008

Better Late than Never..........5 year old put in handcuffs.....and I agree with it!

One of the most frustrating things to talk to friends and colleagues (especially when said friends are parents) about is how to discipline children in the 21st century. Oftentimes I encounter a knee-jerk reaction from some adults who hear a story (on its surface) of a child being put in handcuffs or forcibly restrained due to aberrant behavior. And the reaction (usually disdain for yours truly) gets worse when I usually agree with the school and/or authorities' response. In this case, a Queens child was restrained for misbehaving and the usual suspects are upset. No one seems to wonder how criminal or disruptive behavior originates when the child is fifteen. Furthermore, it is rarely discussed that as time moves on crimes are becoming more heinous as the perpetrators get younger. Hearing stories of 9 year old rapists and murderers are not that unusual in the new millennium. I would never say that the young child in question's behavior rose (or is that lowered) to the aforementioned standards but one can assume that the most ruthless gangbanger got his or her start somewhere. Check out an excerpt from The New York Daily News, pertaining to young Master Rivera:

5-year-old boy handcuffed in school, taken to hospital for misbehaving


Friday, January 25th 2008, 4:00 AM
Kindergartner Dennis Rivera, 5, tells how he was handcuffed to chair at Queens school last week as mom, Jasmina Vasquez, listens. Koester for News

Kindergartner Dennis Rivera, 5, tells how he was handcuffed to chair at Queens school last week as mom, Jasmina Vasquez, listens.

A 5-year-old boy was handcuffed and hauled off to a psych ward for misbehaving in kindergarten - but the tot's parents say NYPD school safety agents are the ones who need their heads examined.

"He's 5 years old. He was scared to death," Dennis Rivera's mother, Jasmina Vasquez, told the Daily News. "You cannot imagine what it's done to him."

Dennis - who suffers from speech problems, asthma and attention deficit disorder - never went back to class at Public School 81 in Queens after the traumatic incident.

His mom and a school source said Dennis threw a tantrum inside the Ridgewood school at 11 a.m. on Jan. 17.

Dennis was taken to the principal's office, where he apparently knocked items off a desk.

Rather than calling the boy's parents, a school safety agent cuffed the boy's small hands behind his back using metal restraints, the school source said.

The agent and school officials then called an ambulance to take the tot to Elmhurst Hospital Center for a mental evaluation.

Vasquez was stunned when a guidance counselor called her at work to say her son was being taken to the psych ward.

And if our readers picked up certain cues from the article, you know why this happened and what the end result will be-litigation. I did not see any mentioning of a father or male role model. I noticed that the mother and son possessed different surnames. I noticed denial. It's the same song played on a broken Ipod. What say you folks? Am I looking at this wrong? I'm sure you all have opinions-let's here them. For more of the Daily News article, click here.

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