Fandango's One Word Challenge (FOWC) · justice · Word of the Day Challenge

Kicks for Kicks

Word of the Day Challenge is pummel.  Fandango’s One-Word Challenge is leisure.

Have you ever met a person whose idea of leisure is to pummel others? I have in mind so many of the juveniles I worked with on probation. A group of kids will go out walking, just looking to find an unfortunate person walking alone or with only a few friends. If they don’t come across anyone, they begin to brainstorm anyone they may have a beef with and go right to their home and call them out. If they won’t come out, they’ll break windows or doors and go in and pull them out, or simply beat them inside of their homes. The leisure activity would not be complete without several individuals pulling out their phones and videotaping the pummeling. The smart ones post it on snapchat because it gets deleted when you log off (so I’ve been told) but the not-so-smart ones will post it on youtube. I say not-so-smart because the police and prosecutor’s office routinely monitors known juveniles’ social media sites.

What may surprise some is that the girls are doing this as much, if not more than, the boys.

Where the challenge comes in is trying to find an appropriate response from a justice perspective, i.e. an effective consequence for such behavior. Multiple studies from myriad angles has shown that punishment is ineffective in changing behavior. “Locking kids up” is effective only in keeping them off of the streets and not committing more crimes – but that effect lasts only as long as they are locked up. Further, when you lump low risk and high risk kids on probation together, you are putting the low risk kids at even greater risk to commit further criminal acts — or to be victimized by the tougher kids.

What would YOU do if you had a responsibility of giving accountability in this situation – and why?

Here is one *random* youtube video that came up when I put “girl gang fights” in the search box.  This happens ALL THE TIME where I live!  This is typical.

8 thoughts on “Kicks for Kicks

    1. we have a well-developed restorative justice program here that works with the kids and the families, based upon Native American principles. it starts out with the act creating negative energy in the community and how one goes about dispelling it. sometimes it works but it is what is called victim-oriented mediation, where the victim has to agree to participate. many times the victim (and often their families) are afraid to participate as it comes back on them. unfortunately most times it has little to no effect — at least at the time. maybe it plants seeds for the future?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. try a google search on restorative justice principles or victim oriented mediation and you can probably find a wealth of info on it. if done properly it can created palpable energy within the healing circle

        Liked by 1 person

  1. How incredibly sad. This really hurts me in so many ways. I cannot bear anyone being hurt. I cannot watch anything with violence in TV or Movies. If something like that comes on I have to cover my eyes or leave the room. It causes me physical pain to see it or think about it. How can these children do this to each other? I agree with you that locking them up will not cure them. These are deep emotional problems that require long term therapy. So sad 😥

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Christine, one of the biggest issues for the kids is that they are, 1) not being educated; and 2) they are bored out of their minds. There is sometimes a 3) physically abused at home so solve issues with violence, and a 4) serious mental health issues, but most times not. We don’t appreciate and value our young people, especially poor young people.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes you’re right and I completely agree with your last sentence. Those poor kids are just kicked to the curb or locked up. That is not a viable solution, it’s just a convenient one for the authorities. 😕

        Liked by 1 person

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