Pepper spray and 8 year olds
Current event time! The NY Daily News had an article this morning about Cops defending the use of pepper spray on an 8 year old who was threatening to stab his teacher. Click here to read the article.
If you don’t feel like it, here’s the breakdown:
Apparently in Colorado, a Cop got called in for a third time regarding the same kid named Aiden. He had a sharp piece of wood and was threatening to stab the teachers. His mother states that he has had anger issues in the past and his tantrums aren’t unusual. She also states that he was treated like a “common criminal.” The police spokesman Steve Davis says he defends the Cops in choosing the pepper spray.
Here’s my take:
First of all, how long do you let your kid have these ‘anger issues’ before you seek help? More and more, I’ve been reading about teachers being threatened and taking all the blame when they call the police. I remember a few months back, a teacher in California was actually suspended for calling the cops on a student who was bullying kids. Isn’t the job of a school’s administration to defend it’s employees and safety? I mean, hell, the kid even says he has anger issues. Um, a cry for help, perhaps?
It seems to me that some parents are relying heavily on anyone but themselves to raise their children. I often wonder if it’s because they feel in over their heads, are lazy, or just don’t care. Any of those situations are sad. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to raise a child who has anger issues and don’t have any support system in place. But ignoring it won’t make it go away.
However, the teacher has had to call the cops before on this kid. Doesn’t that say something? And why should it come to three separate times? I understand a teacher has too many students these days, but three times calling the cops should say that this child is in desperate need for some help. There’s a reason schools employ guidance councilors and if that’s even too much for them, I’m sure there has to be other outlets for them to consider. There’s also a reason for organizations such as PTA, where parents and teachers work together to make sure the kids turn out OK.
Now, the here and now. A cop used pepper spray on an 8 year old. Not really sure I’m OK with that, but at the same time, someone was going to get hurt. The 8 year old had a sharp object and the cop had pepper spray. I’d much rather have a snotty 8 year old than a bleeding teacher, kid or cop. I understand that if that kid had asthma or some other respiratory issue, it could have been worse, but he didn’t, apparently, so all is well on that front. His mother says he was treated like a ‘common criminal,’ and that’s exactly what he was. It is a crime to threaten and abuse others. I don’t care if you’re 8 or if you’re 80. And does she really think that once he’s 18 and an adult that he’s going to magically be all better? Pretty sure Charles Manson had a rough upbringing. Just saying. (Yes, I know, I just compared an 8 year old to Charles Manson, please don’t give me shit about it.)
How do you know when to take a threat seriously? I, personally, take all threats seriously. I don’t think the cop had any other choice in the matter. Sure, he’s 8 and smaller than them, but imagine if the cop had used force to get him to drop the sharp object and broke a bone by accident. POLICE BRUTALITY! OMG!
So that’s my take on it. What’s yours?
*I’d also like to note that I, personally, have been both pepper sprayed and tear gassed. It passes quickly. It’s not pleasant whatsoever, but I’d much rather that than having something physical done to me.