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View Diary: KosAbility: Police Violence, Disability, and All of Us (62 comments)

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  •  Zero Tolerance has its problems (14+ / 0-)

    and so does prison-for-profit...

    When I was a kid, I remember a guy in the neighborhood whom we would probably call "autistic" now, but at the time he just had "mental problems." He'd wander off every so often, and the police would take him home, If he "borrowed" something from the local grocery store, the proprietor would chalk it up to the family account and ask his mother or sister for payment when they came in, as they did every week. My family explained that as long as he didn't hurt anyone, he was OK in the community. I don't know what became of him in later years, as we moved away to the big city when I was 12, but I would imagine he continued to be tolerated as long as he was in the town where folks had known him from childhood.

    Now he would probably be jailed for life on his third infraction--a nice catch, a young specimen who could pull in money for a long time in the private prison system.

    In the town where I currently live, the majority of mental health services provided to our residents are provided to those in jail.

    That's our system now.

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