Victor Rios on the Youth Control Complex [Sociological Images]
In this 11-minute video, Dalton Conley interviews Victor Rios about the youth control complex. He argues the that punishing arm of the state (the prison system) and the nurturing arm of the state (the education system) work together to criminalize, stigmatize, and punish young inner city boys and men.
The campaign against mean people [Ta-Nehisi Coates/TheAtlantic.com]
I’ve been bothered for awhile by the way in which violent homophobia is now being folded into “bullying.”
When I was kid, I got jumped for not walking home without enough friends, and for being in the wrong neighborhood. I got teased for everything from the texture of my hair to the vintage of my kicks. All of this was horrible, but it was very different from being bumrushed or demeaned for being gay. Every kid I knew had to take measures to secure his safety home, and I don’t know a black kid today who didn’t get snapped on. In West Baltimore, at least, getting jumped was democratic. Gay-bashing, not so much.
This very much puts me in the mind of Malcolm X’s critique of white Northerners going South to preach and practice nonviolence among blacks. As admirable as all of that was, what was also needed was for those Northerners to preach nonviolence in Cicero and South Boston. Likewise, while handing out hugs to gay kids is admirable, it might be worth examining the beast within.
What Killed Aiyana Stanley-Jones? [mother jones]
“I’m worried they went Hollywood,” said a high-ranking Detroit police official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the investigation and simmering resentment in the streets. “It is not protocol. And I’ve got to say in all my years in the department, I’ve never used a flash-bang in a case like this.”
The official went on to say that the SWAT team was not briefed about the presence of children in the house, although the neighborhood informant who led homicide detectives to the Lillibridge address told them that children lived there. There were even toys on the lawn.
“It was a total fuck-up,” the official said. “A total, unfortunate fuck-up.”
Transracial Adoption Leads to Stares: How one mother deals [ParentDish]Two years ago, when my children first arrived, people stared at us wherever we went — a water park, the mall, the grocery store, the train station, the beach. During our first summer as a family, people seemed to be riveted by the striking beauty of my eldest; the dark shade of her skin made even more luminous by the summer sun.
The problem is compounded because my daughter has a penchant for lo mein.
The Chinese restaurant that my daughter insists on dining at has been the site of the most overt staring offenses. At one dinner in particular, the family behind us (whom she was facing) was staring at her, which included two little girls whispering. While she tried to ignore it, she said that the situation was hurting her heart. I leaned over the booth and politely waved at the staring family.
“Geez, my daughter thinks your girls are staring at her,” I offered. “Is it because she is so beautiful?” Thankfully, the mother caught on quickly, and agreed that yes, it was because my daughter was so beautiful.