I had lunch today with some friends and former co-workers. One still works at the place I retired from, two have retired from it, and all three are actively involved in the community in one capacity or another. Compared to them, I’m out of touch with the pulse of the community – by choice.
These lunches with former co-workers help me keep up to date on the news just enough to satisfy but not so much that it overwhelms. What is difficult to hear is when former probationers commit heinous crimes, which is what I heard today.
The universe would be much easier to understand if things were as this-that “bipolar” as so many humans like to believe it is. Reality is varying shades of grey. What I’m thinking when I say this is about juveniles who commit crimes. I’m torn in two about it and have been for years. On the one hand, my heart goes out to the kids, as I know many/most times they have come from multiple trauma backgrounds and have had to adapt to survive; it’s just that the ways they survive many times involve illegal acts. On the other hand there is a great misperception by the public that “they are just wayward kids, give them a chance.” The ones who say that have not been victimized by them or had loved ones harmed/raped/killed by them. There are kids who are (undiagnosed) sociopaths out there that would just as soon shoot you as look at you. Yes, they probably – no, almost certainly – had multiple traumas growing up, but it doesn’t change the fact that they are dangerous.
Having seen it from both ends of the pole, I am caught in the middle. MOST juvenile delinquents are not dangerous and menacing; however a small percentage are and those are the ones who need to stay locked up. They can be given plenty of perks and privileges but from behind bars.