Many people have referred to criminals as a cancer that must be rooted out. As we all know, after surgeons remove cancer, chemotherapy and radiation follow. That’s kind of hard to do with crime and criminals. Therefore, the “cancer” will come back. We need to focus on early detection. That should start in our schools.
Let me throw a few names at you. James P. Stout is on death row for the 1995 kidnapping, carjacking, and murder of Amber Hunter. Stout decided that Ms. Hunter had to die because one of the accomplices used his name. Tony Caruthers shot 3 people and buried them alive in the Rose Hill Cemetery. Caruthers had to represent himself at trial because he threatened to kill each of his court appointed attorneys. Jesse Dotson killed his brother, Cecil, and five other people whose ages ranged from 2 to 27 years of age. Dotson also beat and stabbed three children.
Other than being on death row, each of these people has something in common. They were a product of some schools system, most likely the Memphis City Schools system. School records are good places to learn when kids are starting to turn bad and let schools officials know where to place intervention programs.
We all remember what schools were like. There were people that we knew were going to go to jail. I was right about several people. The bullies prosper in the school environment. Why? No one wants to be on the bully’s bad side. They laugh at what he/she does and will not snitch on him. Yet, teachers send them to the office and there are records of the number of times they were sent to the office and the fights they’ve been involved in.
We need to petition our lawmakers(state and federal) to sponsor a study. Examine the school records of 100 of Memphis’ most notorious criminals. The study should look for a pattern in when these people started showing violent behavior. The results of that study should be used to place psychologists at the appropriate grade level. There are children that are living lives that many of us cannot fathom. Trained psychologists in the schools can help identify issues in a student’s life and get help for that child.
The only way to get a grasp on crime is to stop criminal behavior before it starts. We have a lot of people that are having children but they are not good parents. There is something wrong with the younger generations. They have no compuncture when it comes to pulling a trigger, impaling someone with an object or striking them with a car. Unfortunately, the serial sharing of fight videos and reality TV validates such behavior. A psychologist in every school would be money well spent.