Putting Black Parents In Jail, And Other Matters, A Critical Analysis

by David Rambeau

Anybody who advocates putting more black people in jail should have to undergo psychiatric examination. Thus, our Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy and two of her sycophants, Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh and Council President Pro Tem Gary Brown, should schedule their examinations immediately. If they are already in treatment, perhaps they need their dosages strengthened.

It seems Worthy is campaigning for parents of Detroit public school children who fail to attend parent-teachers meetings to be imprisoned for three days. The only reason reported in the media is that the prosecutor alleges a connection between youth crime and detention and the failure of parents to attend parent-teacher sessions. LOL. Sometimes it rains while the sun is shining. Sometimes there'll also be a rainbow. They accompany each other; they don't cause each other. Unless you think it's the trees that make the wind blow.

Worthy isn't the first Detroit political leader to display a need for therapeutic examination. Former Detroit Councilwoman Monica Conyers and her chief of staff Sam Riddle also displayed emotionally peculiar behavior which ultimately landed them in jail. Detroit Public School Financial Overseer Robert Bobb has also exhibited megalomania on a grand scale to the detriment of Detroit's teachers, parents and school children. Maybe there's something in the water.

Others in need of serious therapeutic attention include a growing list of Detroit public officials: our ex-mayor, his ex-chief of staff, several of the ex-mayor's appointees, a posse of Detroit Public School officials indicted for fraud, embezzlement and theft of cash and school supplies, and our functionally illiterate ex-chairman of the Detroit School Board sentenced to two years probation for repeatedly and obnoxiously fondling himself during a series of official meetings with the school superintendent.

If you want to get parents more involved in the education of their children, you might ask the parents what they need to make this happen. If that doesn't work, you could use tried-and-true methods for improving student achievement: tutors, not parental prison, mentors not prison, after-school activities not prison. And more: jobs not prison, transportation not prison.

Which parent will end up in prison? Single moms. The fathers are long gone, or already in the criminal justice system. So when the single mom gets out of jail in three days and comes home to find her children in foster homes, her house vandalized after a break-in by her neighbors down the street who watched the police take her away, she'll really be motivated to to attend parent-teacher meetings, won't she? Or abuse her children. Whom else will she be able to blame and victimize? No one, but her vulnerable children.

But why stop with parents of young people in public schools. The dropout and failure rate for black college students is also high. The prosecutor could incarcerate the parents of college students too. With thousands of parents in jail there would be a need to expand the prison system, hire more guards, parole officers, social workers. The unemployment problem in the black community would be solved, all thanks to the Wayne County Prosecutor.

In Detroit we have a city-wide parents organization advocating to put teachers in jail because of a lack of student achievement, and not to be outdone, we have a prosecutor who wants to put the parents in jail. Next, we'll have some leader lobby to have all non-achieving students put in quasi-prisons, also known as military schools. Teachers, parents and students in a vast 2010 urban educational institution called prison.

There is a precedent for this. In the recent past Michigan under Governor John Engler closed the mental institutions ostensibly to save money. In due time all the former mental patients gravitated into homelessness or into the prison system. Now we have the same so-called solution for educational challenges. Absurd.

A new book, The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander, spoke about the rampant incarceration of black men through the War On Drugs. This process has created a new, expanded underclass of black men who can't get jobs and can't vote because of their felony records. Without jobs they can't support a family or be involved in the education of their children, so the circle of oppression grows generation after generation.

Thanks Kym Worthy, Wayne County Prosecutor, for adding your input to the process.

Putting Black Parents In Jail, And Other Matters, A Critical Analysis by David Rambeau

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