Paul's Internet Landfill/ 2023/ Prison Pipeline

Prison Pipeline

I just had an upsetting experience that is roiling in my head. I probably should not write about it, but we'shall see whether I publish or not.

I was sitting in the park beside the Forest Heights library. Beside the tables is a skatepark, and two young white boy psychopaths were riding their scooters there with their black friend. I do not know their ages; the white psychopaths had not hit puberty (so were maybe 10? 11?) and their black friend was still very young but much taller.

I was sitting at the table summarizing books on my computer, and one of the psychopaths (named Cameron, I think) was shrieking at his black friend to go shoplift some drinks from the dollar store. The black friend went away and returned with a bottle of water, but that was not good enough. Now he wanted pop. "Are you my friend?" Cameron the psychopath was saying. "Are you my friend?"

I was irritated by these kids but mostly ignoring them until psychopath #2 started asking me questions. I do not remember the questions clearly now. At one point he may have asked what I was doing here. I let him know that I was not happy that he was trying to get his black friend to shoplift for him, and he insisted that he had given his friend five dollars. Then he started calling me names, and then he punched the water bottle off my table. Of course, when I stood up and took one step towards the psychopath, he ran away shrieking.

Obviously I should have kept my mouth shut. A few minutes later the two little white psychopaths started harassing me. They started asking me whether I was homeless, and swore at me and told me to suck their genitals. I was pretty upset but holding onto my temper, but as soon as I stood up they all ran away, then claimed they were not scared. Psychopath #2 saw that I had a butter knife on the table (which I was using to cut bars off my chocolate, thank you very much) and shrieked that I had a knife and was going to stab them. I think before that I yelled at them about being scaredy-cats, which was not good tactics on my part, but I was pretty fed up.

This was turning into a bad scene, so I packed up and left. As I was leaving these brave little psychopaths and their black friend started throwing bottles and rocks at me. They told me homeless people should not be at the park and they hoped I would die in a hole. I packed up and left.

Yes, I handled this incorrectly. I was the adult and was supposed to be calm and rational as they were punching my stuff and swearing at me. And for the most part I was. But why did I get involved at all?

I got involved because of the tall black kid. The two white psychopaths were trying to get him in trouble. It would have been hilarious to them if the black kid got caught and arrested by the police. They did not care about their black friend at all. But the black friend was going along with their escapades. My projection was that he was going along because he wanted their acceptance, but I do not know for sure.

If I had better social skills here is what I should have done. I should have talked to that black kid directly. I should have pointed out that as a tall black kid he was in grave danger. If his psychopathic little white friends went shoplifting and were caught, nothing bad would happen to them. If he went shoplifting and was caught and the police got involved, he would very likely be in handcuffs. Just the way I would have been blamed if I had further escalated with these psychopaths, he would have gotten the brunt of the punishment for being tall and black. Those psychopathic cowards were fully prepared to ruin their black friend's life because it would be "funny". But once you start getting in trouble with the law, it is all too easy for things to get worse and worse. That is the prison pipeline in action.

The dynamics of that situation really upset me, so I got involved and I made everything worse. Those kids had a grand adventure at my expense, and will sleep well knowing they chased a homeless-looking guy away from their park. Even if somebody had videotaped them throwing things at me they would be celebrated as heroes, and I would probably have a criminal record. I am not particularly woke, but even I know the deal with the police. Even I have had enough interactions with the law to see what is happening here. The psychopaths knew that too; they were trying to goad me so that I could get arrested by the police while they claimed white child innocence.

Of course, the black kid was throwing things at me too. He was too busy being hard to listen. But maybe if I had said the obvious thing out loud he would have remembered it the next time his psychopathic little white friends asked him to shoplift for their entertainment. Maybe. But if this situation was to come up again then I probably would be best off staying quiet and walking away.

Incidentally, I make no apologies whatsoever for labelling these two little white boys psychopaths. None whatsoever. Maybe one day they will grow out of their psychopathy but their behavior today was reprehensible. I understand that "kids will be kids" and that children deliberately say provocative impolite things to goad reactions from adults, but there was more going on here.

Sometimes I regret not having a cellphone; today was one of those days. Probably I would have made things much worse by videotaping them (they would have accused me of being a pedophile, probably). Because I have no concrete evidence to show you none of you believe this happened, and now you can all accuse me of making racist stories.