Saturday, February 24, 2001
Timely response After reading the initial reports of the "liquor run" by one of the jail inmates, I knew I had to write, as did everyone that knows me. However, I did have to wait a few days before I wrote this for two reasons: one was to stop laughing long enough to type this, second to perform a little experiment.
I got together four runners to see if they could accomplish this "liquor run" in a "couple of unsupervised minutes" or the "10 minutes" of unsupervised time reported in the Steamboat Today. There are two liquor stores near the jail facility and my runners started from the parking lot of the jail facility, not the sides or the back as we did not know the location the jail runner started from and also to give the best time possible. Not giving time for any of my "inmates" to see if a guard would come out in a few minutes, I just had them run as soon as my back was turned. Let's just say that after two attempts by my runners, with everything going perfectly, no one else in the stores, grabbing the first bottle available (we weren't choosy) we came close to the ten minutes. But then we had to take a couple of minutes to get inside the jail, get to the kitchen area, grab a couple of cups, pour our ill gotten gains, and toast our extraordinary luck to the tune of a several sips, plus hide the bottle. Well, those activities totally blew the "unsupervised 10 minutes."
We won't even go into why a jail inmate would have ID on him for this purchase, or why even trustees are outside unsupervised for any length of time when they are known to be in a zone that the cameras don't fully cover. I mean, they have been convicted of previous offenses so how trustworthy can they be, especially in an unsupervised area.
Personally, I am glad we weren't dealing with anyone close to the Texas Seven.
It makes me wonder about the training and supervision that the administration gives its personnel. If no policies and procedure were violated, they sure should have been somewhere along the line because if an inmate can make a liquor run and get high in the jail then there is a real problem with the administration saying that their security was okay. That's kind of a small contradiction.
I am in favor of a couple more felonies being added to the list. I think the district attorney's office should look at charging the sheriff's office with aiding and abetting the introduction of a contraband substance to a "secure" jail facility and contributing to the delinquency of a jail inmate. Without such "excellent" supervision given these inmates, this would never have happened and the inmates would not face additional felonies. District attorneys routinely the charge co-conspirator in the commission of felonies; it's just too bad that in this case the co-conspirator is the sheriff's department.
Apathy and respect The Feb. 14 (letter to the editor) regarding our apathy towards town meetings touched a nerve. People can protest, organize and rally but when it is all said and done, it is becoming embarrassingly clear that those with enough money are going to have their way, no matter what. Take Referendum 2A (which asked voters to approve a tax on new contruction to aid affordable housing efforts). Was it just me, or was there a palpable feeling of panic in the two weeks before the election? The developers, contractors and real estate agents got together and created some very bad spin on a damn good idea. Had they focused that effort and money on solving the problem rather than defeating it, maybe a few of our teachers or municipal workers would be making plans to move into some nice, petite homes this spring.
It doesn't stop at small town politics: It was clear in the earliest of primaries that George W. Bush didn't have the qualifications to even be seriously considered for the presidency. Yet today he sits in the White House. It's as if the country is finally shaking off the effects of the rufee that was slipped to us in November, asking ourselves, "How did this happen?" I'm not a Gore supporter either, but at least he won the popular vote. And, according to recent updates from Florida, he may have even won the Electoral College (Which we know was set up by our forefathers because they didn't trust the common man, i.e. non-landowning persons, to make educated decisions regarding the country's direction). While we ponder this, George W. is repaying his already filthy-rich benefactors tenfold by pushing through his tax cut while making plans to drill in Alaska and negate the public spaces that Clinton created in his last year of office.
We can't even make a dent in the things that really matter, why should we care about helicopter flyovers?
The janitor situation: After working in teen recreation programs for the better part of 10 years, I finally threw in the towel and went to work in the private sector.
The lack of respect kids show for property and adults is appalling. Ms. Anderson's child may or may not have plugged the toilet, but I'm willing to bet that he said the wrong thing at the wrong time to Mr. Neil, who then, snapped and made a mistake.
Slap Mr. Neil on the wrist and give him back his job, let the high schoolers deal with the Anderson kid, and tell mom to "butt out." Her son is learning a valuable lesson about consequences. It's too bad that Mr. Neil is too.