Barack Obama ends solitary confinement for juveniles in federal custody

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Obama did it…


This is moving-the-needle stuff, and very important. Glad he did it!

Now if only more local institutions ALSO needed to follow these rules…


I thought most were in the eye/eye camp where there are no second chances. That’s why we ask that question on job applications right - to weed the undesirables out early?

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It’s almost like there is some sort of incentive for leaving inmates unable to successful reintegrate with society…


How can this be a thing? How can “the greatest nation in the world” need to have this form of mental torture – against children, no less – officially made illegal by the President?

Remember: the U.S. has refused to ratify the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Children. Refused. Because we don’t believe children should have human rights. Literally.


Not officially illegal, officially against policy in federal institutions.


Hypothesis: The US culture is heavily influenced by 16th-century Protestant fundamentalists, who, like most fundamentalists, are overly concerned with purity. This allows people to easily de-humanize those who do something “wrong” (this is a key point of fundamentalist psychology, after all - the importance of being “right”).

Recognizing that children aren’t deserving of solitary confinement means confronting the cognitive dissonance that exists when a fundamentalist mind needs to accept the humanity of someone who has done something wrong. Often, especially in law enforcement, that confrontation comes down on the side of “everyone who does bad things is a bad person and therefore deserving of whatever we do to them, because they are bad.”

(I dunno that that’s true, but it has the shape of truth, and is more reassuring than “people are monsters,” anyway)



So torture only for adults now. You can call that an improvement … or not.


I read it as “No furiners are gonna tell us what we can and can’t do with our children.” Same reason why we can’t have decent subsidized early care and education, postnatal care, in-home visiting, or properly funded social services in the U.S. Your suppositions about Finicum being the even darker side of this…


Broad brush.
But mostly true.

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I’m glad he made this symbolic gesture, but I wonder how many juveniles are housed by the feds?

One wishes that the federal government (i.e., justice dept.) looks into possible civil rights violations for state and local lock ups, thus encouraging states to sign on to real prison reform.

To be fair I’ve never thought of my country as the greatest, but I have a huge LOW self-esteem issue.

(Edited to add “low”–but y’all knew that.)

Ban the Box initiatives are making headway on state and local levels. California has already passed a version of it; they’re still allowed to ask, but not to screen out solely based on a “yes,” and AFAICT it only applies to state jobs, not private employers. But baby steps are better than a flailing tantrum.

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