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Autistic boy charged with terrorism for a drawing

May 13, 2010

  The details are still sketchy, but an autistic 14 year old Georgia boy is facing terror charges and a tribunal for a drawing that he made. The sketch is a stick figure drawing that shows himself shooting one of his teachers.

  I am not going to defend this boy for the picture that he drew, he obviously has mental problem on top of his autism, but charging this boy– who has the mental capacity of a 3rd grader– with terrorism in front of a tribunal seems to be going just a little bit too far to me. This boy has no idea what he did wrong– that is a problem in itself and the boy needs help, but let’s get real here. This boy may have problems, and action must be taken to ensure that he never acts upon what he drew, and he probably needs therapy, Does that make him a terrorist who should be subjected to a tribunal?

  I do find it telling however that this boy will face a tribunal while terrorists who are being held at GITMO are going to get full legal rights under the United States constitution and will not be faced with the prospects of a military tribunal. It make you wonder what the hell is going on in our government.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. The Georgia Yankee permalink
    May 13, 2010 9:41 pm

    Steve, we hire teachers and administrators on the basis of their academic credentials, their experience and their wisdom and judgment.

    Having done so we’ve got to let them earn their pay by exercising that judgment.

    In too many places in this country, school boards have imposed “zero tolerance” policies that were poorly conceived and simply not thought through.

    In other cases, administrators and teachers seem to be engaging in “defensive administering,” going overboard whenever the ducks aren’t lined up. For instance, in the current case, they’re probably considering that if they don’t take drastic action now, and this child winds up doing something terrible down the road, public opinion will hold them responsible for knowing about the potential danger and not doing anything about it.


    • May 13, 2010 11:11 pm

      This is a tricky case, and I am sure that you are right when you say they are probably taking action now so that they cannot be held accountable if somehting happens down the road. But terrorism might be pushing it a little too far. I think it is more likely a “zero tolerance” policy is to blame here, but shouldn’t there be a little common sence used in this case?


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