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PUBLIC OPINION > It's Not OK to Handcuff Kids

News 2012/04/20 13:00:00
The parents of 6-year-old Salecia Johnson were shocked to find out that their child had been handcuffed and hauled off to jail on Tuesday. According to The Associated Press, while at school she "threw a small shelf that struck the principal in the leg, and jumped on a paper shredder and tried to break a glass frame." At some point administrators called the cops, and when the officer couldn't calm her down he put her in cuffs and took her to the station. This story has "controversy" written all over it, so you know we asked the public.



Sure enough, the results are just shy of a split decision. Overall, the voters decided against it by a margin of 10%, but there was more than enough support to get a toasty debate going. The real issue seemed to be whether there were any other options available. Those who voted in favor of the cuffing assumed there must have been good cause; those who voted against it assumed it was an overreaction. Some blamed the parents for not teaching her to behave in the first place; others wondered what the school did to cause the tantrum. There were a lot of angles.

Teens Think It's Terrible

Voters closest in age to the girl were most likely to oppose the officer's use of handcuffs. Maybe it's a little scary to realize just how vulnerable they could be if they don't act right. If a 6-year-old can get the cuffs, they're certainly not immune. Plus, they probably remember what it was like to be six a little better.

Parents Weigh Their Options

You might think parents would be more defensive, but they were actually more supportive than most. Along with voters who don't want kids at all, parents were split down the middle. However, voters who want kids someday were much less supportive. They don't know what they're in for.

Liberals Don't Like It

Yes, of course there was a political element to this. It actually wasn't as pronounced as it could have been, but conservatives were two times as likely as liberals to condone the use of handcuffs in this instance. Right-leaning voters frequently pointed out that handcuffs are merely a restraint, and not physically damaging. At least they didn't tase her.

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  • fluer 2012/04/20 17:00:46
    fluer
    +16
    As a teacher who has had students out of control I can only assume this child was really out there badly. In the last 8 years we have only had to call the police one time and in that case they did haul the kiddo off to jail I think in cuffs. I guess they could have put her in a jacket, but if you stop and consider that she had already shown the inclination to injure and then destroy property could they let her go until she calmed down and potentially risk injury to another student or more property damage? Kiddo needed to be stopped to protect the rest of her peers and the staff from her destructive behavior. Do I like to consider this no, but in the real world where no one from the school can lay a hand on her without facing the very real possibility of a lawsuit the options are limited. Kiddo needs help but she also needs to learn there are consequences to actions. Sad all the way around.

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  • Robert 2012/07/20 20:34:52
    Robert
    This is bullsh-t! We have children (they are in college now) and have participated in all of the PTA meetings and all of the parent, teacher, counselor meetings. IMOP, if an adult can't handle a child without handcuffing them, then they shouldn't be teaching. Get the hell out of the schools and go and do something else. But you don't need to be around children. We're talking about a child. When I was in school, we didn't throw temper tantrums, we fought. Talking about some damn temper tantrums. No one was ever arrested! A few big strong male teachers handled the situation. The child was physically removed from the class and put in a room by themselves and the parents or the child's guardian were contacted and they had to come. Or another teacher who knew how to calm a child down, calm the child down..
  • Ryoka∞Boy 2012/05/23 09:36:34
  • beth weisleder 2012/05/15 23:28:20
    beth weisleder
    If a child is that 'out of control', YES, I do believe they should be handcuffed to prevent further harm to others.
  • actionjksn 2012/05/15 15:45:59
    actionjksn
    For the people who say no. What would you say if they had decided not to subdue her and the psychopathic little monster decided she wanted to take it to the next level and seriously injure the teacher or another child, it happens . What if she had broken some glass and taken a piece of it and sliced someones jugular vein? The truth is there really are psychopathic kids and they are capable of murder. It has happened and it definitely will happen again. How else do you subdue a psychopathic kid who has made a commitment to destroy and injure as much as possible. Do you think "it" was going to quit on its own or listen to reason? These monster kids are created by parents who start responding to a child's tantrums in the way that the child wanted them to. Basically the little brat throws a fit and the parents and others immediately comply with the child and bam, they just created a little monster. Also some kids are naturally more prone to becoming psychopaths. Adults who are like that were usually if not always like that when they were kids. There are just people with sick minds and not all of these people are adults.
  • beth we... actionjksn 2012/05/15 23:42:02
    beth weisleder
    I, personally, do not believe in spanking a child OR hitting anyone. IMHO, it only shows that you are bigger & stronger. I absolutely believe in punishment for bad behavior but NOT by physical attacks. Better to punish the child by taking away beloved items until good behavior prevails. Or preventing the child from going somewhere they want to go - like the zoo. With a small child, I believe in "time out". After they calm down, it can be explained WHY & how to avoid future 'time outs', etc.
  • aaroneb63 2012/05/03 03:17:45
    aaroneb63
    Situations such as that one goes to show you that real discipline is needed to correct children when they are misbehaving. YES, I am talking about spanking their rear ends. True discipline teaches taking responsibilities and receiving the consequences for your actions.
    I guarantee if a study was done for when the "behavioral" know-it-alls started telling parents not to spank their children, it would show that children have become the most disrespectful, inconsiderate, selfish, and self-centered brats of all time and they grow up to be disrespectful, inconsiderate, selfish, and self-centered adults.
  • Amelia Quailler 2012/05/01 17:12:36
  • beth we... Amelia ... 2012/05/15 23:43:35
    beth weisleder
    I imagine you would feel differently if your child was injured by an 'out of control' child.
  • Mitsurugi Chiba 2012/04/26 21:00:58
    Mitsurugi Chiba
    To me it would depend on the age of the child and the seriousness of the offense. I've one time known a guy who because another guy was making fun of him or something went to hit, but the other guy dodged him and he hit the teacher instead. That was in the 6th grade and the teacher was a pretty kewl guy named Mr. Gettinger. I'd heard that he had temper and that was the first time I'd ever seen it. He grabbed said classmate by his arms quite roughly and escorted him down to the principle's office. I don't know what happened after that though. I wouldn't blame him for being handcuffed and taken downtown.
  • rk 2012/04/25 01:38:30
    rk
    When anyone is a threat to themselves or others they need to be subdued. Based on the behavior it was correct.
  • crazy:) 2012/04/24 18:34:49
    crazy:)
    Honestly im 17 and don't hve childern but in case like this wherer the child is out of control lke tht throwing things etc. and they cant calm her down then yes i would result i n handcuffs only to keeo her from hurting other classmates, the staff or herslef! do i think they should hve tooken her to the station no they could of kept her in cuffs til she was calm again but i don't see why parents would get up set because if they really put thought into it then they wouldn't be mad would they reahter them not put her in cuffs and she hurt a student and there parents sue them or something!! teachers aren't allowed to put there hands on the student so i do think this was handled some what the right way!!
  • wow-really 2012/04/24 15:27:00
    wow-really
    Our first inclination is to feel that this was an excessive thing to do, I know, I used to feel this way myself. However, over the years I have seen first hand, the increase in dangerous and assaultive behaviors in students. And the sad part is that they are getting younger and younger.(AND YES, LITTLE KIDS CAN GET COMPLETELY OUT OF CONTROL -HITING, BITING, SPITTING, KICKING, ALL WHILE CUSSING LIKE A DRUNKEN SAILOR)
    Schools are stuck between a rock and a hard place. If a kid is going off and presenting a physical danger to themselves or someone else, and staff try to restrain that kid, parents get upset because someone had the audacity to make their kid stop endangering themselves or others by restraining them. On the other hand, If staff allow said student to tear the place up, and/or hurt another student, and/or hurt themselves in the process, than staff is held liable for NOT intervening. So what's it going to be people? We can't have it both ways.

    If that kid hurt your kid, then we're talking lawsuits. if that kid hurts themselves, we're talking lawsuits. But if that kid assaults a staff person in the process, it's not only tolerated, the kid is given a pass back to class afterwards. NO consequences.In the meantime, crimes commited by juveniles are through the roof, and ...
    Our first inclination is to feel that this was an excessive thing to do, I know, I used to feel this way myself. However, over the years I have seen first hand, the increase in dangerous and assaultive behaviors in students. And the sad part is that they are getting younger and younger.(AND YES, LITTLE KIDS CAN GET COMPLETELY OUT OF CONTROL -HITING, BITING, SPITTING, KICKING, ALL WHILE CUSSING LIKE A DRUNKEN SAILOR)
    Schools are stuck between a rock and a hard place. If a kid is going off and presenting a physical danger to themselves or someone else, and staff try to restrain that kid, parents get upset because someone had the audacity to make their kid stop endangering themselves or others by restraining them. On the other hand, If staff allow said student to tear the place up, and/or hurt another student, and/or hurt themselves in the process, than staff is held liable for NOT intervening. So what's it going to be people? We can't have it both ways.

    If that kid hurt your kid, then we're talking lawsuits. if that kid hurts themselves, we're talking lawsuits. But if that kid assaults a staff person in the process, it's not only tolerated, the kid is given a pass back to class afterwards. NO consequences.In the meantime, crimes commited by juveniles are through the roof, and there aren't enough juvenile facilities to house the ones caught commiting serious, life-threatening crimes. What the heck are we teaching these kids by tolerating bad behaviors.Kids follow by example, and the example we are giving them is only hindering them, not helping them. Enabling kids to act inappropriately is not helping them gain the life skills necessary to be productive members of society, and when people haven't learned how to behave in a socially acceptable matter as an adult, they have 2 options.
    Death or jail.
    (more)
  • Zach 2012/04/24 15:12:33
    Zach
    No never, This one incident was stupid. They should've got her parents or the counselor to talk to her
  • wow-really Zach 2012/04/24 15:37:30
    wow-really
    Sounds good in theory, but while they're waiting for parents and/or counselor to "calm her down", should they also allow her to tear the place up? What if she hurts herself in the process of waiting? Should she be allowed to assaut others? What should happen to her for doing so?
    Do you realize how dangerous restraints are? Especially on small children?
    Funny how people's perceptions have actually nothing to do with realities, and the realities are far uglier than most are willing to admit.
  • Zach wow-really 2012/04/25 14:39:55
    Zach
    While that might be true for the parents the counseler would most likly be there in minutes.
  • wow-really Zach 2012/04/25 14:44:13
    wow-really
    True. But what exactly do you think a counselor can do about it? Sure they're trained to talk to kids, but talking someone down isn't aways easy, and in the meantime, the person going off can still present a danger to self and others.
  • Zach wow-really 2012/04/25 22:55:41
    Zach
    It's better than restaning.
  • wow-really Zach 2012/04/26 14:46:49
    wow-really
    Sure. Talking is better. And when that doesn't work??
    You still have no answers..
  • Zach wow-really 2012/04/27 13:37:08
    Zach
    Tazer? (lol jk)
  • wow-really Zach 2012/04/27 14:40:43
    wow-really
    my favorite.. LOL! ; )
    Really and sincerely, people need to understand that handcuffs really are the safest alternative when it comes to restraints:
    dangers of physical restraints
    dangers of physical restraints of little kid
  • metalmania17 2012/04/24 09:59:53
    metalmania17
    +1
    Right we shouldn't handcuff kids we should baby them until there 18 then wonder why they didn't learn the difference from right and wrong...
  • metalma... metalma... 2012/04/24 10:03:07
    metalmania17
    +1
    Oh wait I got a better idea. Whatever happened to smacking your kid once in a while???
    Oh yeah it's America we have to baby everybody and we can NEVER hurt anyone's feelings God forbid................

    shake head gif
  • nightcrawler2005 2012/04/24 07:48:06
    nightcrawler2005
    Handcuffing a 6 year old is ridiculous. There's lots of ways of controlling the little twit rather than handcuffing her and hauling her off to jail. Nothing like traumatizing the kid for life. What are they going to do charge her with assaulting the principal and destroying public property? She's a 6 year old for bloody sake. In Canada you can't even charge a kid under 12 years old.
  • wow-really nightcr... 2012/04/24 15:41:17
    wow-really
    No. What's ridiculus is that 6 year olds behave so extremely poorly, that they not only put themselves in harms way, they put others at risk aswell, yet they are allowed to do so because they are kids???
    What on earth do we call that lesson?
    I call that a lesson in ENABLING and how to end up dead or in jail.
  • nightcr... wow-really 2012/04/24 16:00:59
    nightcrawler2005
    Maybe the kid had a reason. But nevertheless she was six years old not a bloody teenager. If that is the way you wish to teach kids that young lessons then god help your next generation.
  • wow-really nightcr... 2012/04/24 17:50:58
    wow-really
    Oh oh course. She had a reason. Of course it's perfectly acceptable to have a complete melt down, endanger herself and others because after all, she had her reasons. Every single kid has every right to behave disorderly, cause others harm, endanger themselves, and interupt the learning process of others, simply because they have a right too???? Really?

    Look how great kids are doing now with all that bleeding, heart enabling going on for the last 3 decades...It's freakin FANTASTIC isn't. All these kids being juvenile offenders committing crimes, like killing people, selling drugs..It's bloody awesome how many are locked up and how many are on probation!. Well??? Isn't it????
    And since you brought our Lord's Name into this, whatever happened to "Spare the rod, spoil the child?"
    Maybe adults are getting tired of all this wonderful behavior from these kids, and they finally realizing how our enabling has only been a detriment to them. Kids need discipline, kids need to know that there are consequences for bad behavior, without them, they can never fully understand or appreciate how their behavior not only affects them, but eveybody around them. Maybe people are starting to realize that the monster we have created needs to be stopped before it consumes us all.
  • nightcr... wow-really 2012/04/24 18:41:34
    nightcrawler2005
    Thank you for confirming my opinion and the use of the term god was not in a religious context it was merely a saying that's why it was spelled with a small g.

    You used the saying 'spare the rod, spoil the child' well beating the crap out of kid with a rod hardly constitutes proper disciple unless you live in certain third world countries. I believe in punishing a kid that does wrong. I've spanked a few over the years but that's a hell of a difference between that and handcuffing and dragging a six year old off to the cop shop. You don't see the difference between pulling a temper tantrum and murdering someone or selling drugs. You honestly feel they should treat her like a hardened criminal. I don't know the stats in your country but in mine we don't have a lot of 6 year old murderers and drug pushers (actually I don't know of a single case). I'm sorry I don't know what to say your treatment of kids just scares the crap out of me. Good Luck
  • wow-really nightcr... 2012/04/24 20:44:01
    wow-really
    Who said anything about beating the crap out of kids??? Spare the rod, spoil the child doesn't mean you have to beat a child. Unless you're stuck on stupid and take everything said literally. it means, don't spoil a child. be a parent and provide them with guidance so that they can grow up and be productive...
    Man.. it really is true how people see and hear what they want.
    Some kids need eye-opening experiences to get some sense into their thick heads. if parents were doing such a great job of disciplining their children, which has nothing to do with corporal punishment, there would be no need for kids to get handcuffed.
    temper tantrums left unchecked and allowed to grow and fester lead to worse behaviors as they age. And yes. i would rather she get treated harshly now, then for her to be allowed to continue to think it's proper to act that way, and for her behavior to escalate and end up committing a heinous crime later on.
    Oh BTW, Nobody said there are 6 yr old drug dealers or murderers, for one, and two, thanks for proving my point about people seeing and hearing what they want. One thing we do agree with is how people treat or untreat our kids, for it scares the hell out of me thinking what is going to happen to them if they are allowed to continue on this path, and if things don't change quick, we will be needing all the luck you can wish upon us. So thanks.
  • nightcr... wow-really 2012/04/24 21:41:47
    nightcrawler2005
    Here's your quote: 'All these kids being juvenile offenders committing crimes, like killing people, selling drugs'. I hardly think having a temper tantrum is a stepping stone to murder. I'm sorry to discipline a kid at that age for such a minor infraction is one thing but to go to the extent of calling the cops and hauling the kid off to the cop shop in handcuffs is SICK.

    The Spare the rod, Spoil the child was a well used line in the 1800's when they beat the crap out of their kids with a wooden cane for even the most minor infraction. Trust me after this conversation i Do wish you all the luck possible I think you will most definitely need it.
  • wow-really nightcr... 2012/04/25 14:57:50
    wow-really
    Wow. You really have no understanding about discipline, self-control, and responsibilty for actions/behaviors. Juveniles is anyone under the age of 18. Kids don't just become offenders when the hit their teens. It starts when they are little and never learn how to deal with their anger properly and effectively. if a child doesn't learn early on that "temper tantrums" are not going to get them their way, those so-called little temper tantrums will escalate into more violent behaviors toward themselves and others. That's the bottom line.
    As far as spare the rod, I'm not sure what they did in the 1800's, nor do I care. My concern is for the here and now and helping kids develop the skills they will need to survive and thrive in todays day and age.
    Parents need to instill value, self-worth, self-respect, respect for others and responsibilty for one's actions at a very early age. it should not start when the child is allowed to get completely out of control...I'm just sorry you seem unable/unwilling to accept that.
  • nightcr... wow-really 2012/04/25 16:38:51
    nightcrawler2005
    I give up.
    No point. You just don't get and probably never will
    Have a nice life.
  • wow-really nightcr... 2012/04/25 19:45:05
    wow-really
    Give up so easy, huh?
    figures. : (
    Hey then, guess what?
    I give up too, cuz honey, you'll never "get it" either
    I will have a great life.
    you try and do the same.
    duces
  • nightcr... wow-really 2012/04/25 22:31:51
    nightcrawler2005
    childish.
  • wow-really nightcr... 2012/04/26 14:50:40
    wow-really
    I offered a peace.
    But you offer Name calling .. Now that's childish
    So here's something that speaks to your understanding: kid sticking tongue out gif s
  • beth we... nightcr... 2012/05/15 23:51:24
    beth weisleder
    Scared Straight is effective.
  • strawberry 2012/04/24 06:25:19
    strawberry
    +1
    If a kid is that out of control then that kid should be handcuffed.
  • Lew Richards 2012/04/24 00:31:58
    Lew Richards
    IF WE DO NOT CHAIN AND CORRECT WILD CRAZY CHILDREN,THEY GROW UP TO BE LIBERALS---- THEN WE FILL OUR PRISONS!!!
  • LEVI 2012/04/24 00:13:04
    LEVI
    of course not!!!!!!!.........because most-to almost all whites will never ever reveal their true-honest-down in their "heart" feelings(as in Hidden-Racism)..hint-hint...that if this same incident had happen to a white child of the same age by any non-white officer, the " WHOLE-WHITE" race would be so up in arms......you can't imagine how true we know this would have happen. all those phoneys now pulling out policies and or political-bull and liberal's opinions, etc., etc., etc., all because it happen to a non-white child and automatically practically every white person quickly said it was okay.......sad because......the percentage of whites who would be saying it's okay to handcuff a white-child woulf be close to zero! now what percent of whites will own-up and really be honest and say I'm right!!?? oh, that's right we won't know their names or see their faces....so maybe we'll get the true racist ones who'll respond...forgive me, i forgot about the thousands and thousands of cowards who keeps their "Hidden-Racism"...well hidden.
  • wow-really LEVI 2012/04/24 16:50:09
    wow-really
    All due respect, Where is there mention of color? regardless of color, what this child did was wrong, and handcuffs are the least harmful least restrictive way of controling an out of control person, regardless of age -OR color!
    If the cop would have restrained her physically, there would have been more chance of injury to both of them. That would have been better?
    Why excuse her behavior? Why is that ok?
    Shouldn't kids have concequences for their behaviors regardless of the pigmentation of their skin.
    or should we continue to make excuses for and enable our children?
    Have you seen juvenile detention centers lately? there full of kids, so that whole"let kids be kids" mentality is NOT working. And I for one, am tired of losing my kids to cemetaries and prison cells!!!
  • LEVI wow-really 2012/04/26 00:06:34
    LEVI
    either you missed the(my) point or you are going in another direction(and or out of content)....color does and did matter(yes they showed a picture of the little girl....looked african-american to me!), my point isn't excusing her behavior...duh...they would not have put handcuffs on a white child out of control or acting out.....you can bet your house on that!!!! see we always notice that a "black/african-american" individual(no matter what the age or situation)....can only be controled/stopped/restraint by force/power/more then one officer/taser/handcuffs/night... 95-99% of the white individual will always(i'm sorry most times) be restrained with no force at all..(of any of the above mentioned methods......ask any(or most) african-american/black person how that incident would have been handled if the child was white..the officers would have either picked her up..maybe taken her to their car..definitely would have
    called the parents first off, restrainted her in a nurses office, offering her something to eat or drink..please who are you fooling..that's why color matters...not saying let the child get away with anything..........duhhhhhhhhhhh!
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