Police in Schools

Watch Robby Soave on C-SPAN Making the Case for Kicking Cops Out of Schools

A threat to students' due process rights

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I recently appeared on C-SPAN's Washington Journal program to discuss why more and more schools are hiring police officers to handle school discipline—an insidious problem that Reason's Tyler Koteskey and I wrote about for the March 2017 issue of Reason magazine.

You can watch the interview below.

The program, which was taped live, permits listeners to call in and ask questions or make comments—most of which were supportive of my argument that cops in schools are a threat to the constitutional rights of kids.

The final caller's comment, unfortunately, has been cut from the version of the interview available below. That's a shame, because she said something rather clever: she suggested that if schools are going to employ police officers, perhaps they should also be required to employ lawyers to provide legal counsel to students.

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  1. If you were a kid at about 90% of the public high schools in Chicago, you wouldn’t hold that position. Just say’n

    1. Yeah, there are probably schools where police presence is warranted if there is a significant problem with violence.

      It’s pretty fucked that it seems to be becoming normal for most or all high schools, though.

    2. Privatize schools.

  2. SPOILER ALERT: At the 24 minute mark, Soave presents hair care tips to a caller from South Carolina.

    1. “Ah jes’ thank yew got hair lahk a newborn Palomino filly!”

  3. No video, and yes, pop-up blocker is off.

  4. she suggested that if schools are going to employ police officers, perhaps they should also be required to employ lawyers to provide legal counsel to students.

    Beautiful.

    1. The nation’s attorneys support this suggestion.

      1. Indeed.

        And what about requiring bail-bondscreatures and grief counsellors?

        1. If you’re going to go through all this trouble, we may as well have a judge in the school, so we can have the trial and sentencing right there, with jury selection among the student body.

  5. Six minutes in… Civil rights groups know that this disproportionately affects … Gay and lesbian students? WTF?

    1. I see Robby’s point about police in schools and the creeping police state that is happening all around us, but there are schools where students are extremely grateful that police are there.

      Only rich white liberals would worry about police harassing gays and lesbian students (which is a really weird suggestion and kind of bizarre). I assure you that at most public high schools in places like Chicago or other cities the police are there to stop gang activity. They have no time to ‘harass’ whatever the new ‘hip’ social group is in the eyes of the cosmopolitan.

      This is probably why questions like this (and…gasp…bathrooms) should be handled by the local community and not a guy who obviously spends over an hour a day on his hair.

    2. Because there are no lesbian police officers, don’t ya know

  6. she suggested that if schools are going to employ police officers, perhaps they should also be required to employ lawyers to provide legal counsel to students.

    At the very least I don’t think it’s asking too much to require them to do a better job of informing kids about their 4th and 5th amendment rights or the fact that they have a right to an attorney.

  7. That last caller suggestion was absolutely brilliant. You want to have a police officer in schools? Fine. You must also have a criminal defense attorney. The schools should also make sure that the kids are aware of their rights.

  8. TIL it’s pronounced “swa-vay.” In my head I’ve been pronouncing it like it’s spelled, “so-ahv.”

  9. The caller who accused Soave of being in this just for a splashy headline and to make a name for himself and then tried to, I don’t know, reverse mansplain? his own argument? Hilarious. Good on Robby for not rising to that.

    I went to some of the better schools in the Atlanta public school system where we actually had an afterschool special mix of races and economic backgrounds from filthy rich (we had an International baccalaureate program and Performing arts magnet) to kids needing afterschool jobs to help out their single grandma. We had a two person team of officers who would randomly patrol the campus, but were not allowed inside. I’m pretty sure it was the same deal at other high schools, though every day for the more lawless schools with worse graduation rates. At least in my small experience, there was such an impetus on keeping kids in school if at all possible that it would have had to have been something serious to involve the cops. They didn’t even like to suspend kids.

    Anyway, I went back to pick up my younger sister one day when I was home from college in the early 00’s and they’d put in metal detectors and kids could only use clear or mesh backpacks. The wealthy parents had started fleeing. There hadn’t been an incident or anything, they just suddenly had funding for the equipment and police. Completely changed the character of the school. Who seriously thought it was a good idea to treat kids like criminals every day?

    1. Who seriously thought it was a good idea to treat kids like criminals every day?

      The same assholes who think it’s a good idea to treat all citizens like criminals every day.

      -jcr

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