Did You Know Florida "Authorities" Were Abusing--Even Murdering--Young Boys!?!
January 5, 2009 6:25pm CST
This is something that I originally wrote for a discussion but am placing it around other places in order to get the greatest audience for it possible. When you read it, you'll understand why... In Your Face With Some Authorized "Discipline" Visit Russell Online at this time, and you will see it there--right on the front page: http://www.orgsites.com/ca/rusellonline/ I'm referring to Russell's account of being incarcerated here and there from a very early age. Notice this passage he has written (stars added by me for zeroing in on a passage): "Russell was deserted by his parents at the age of nine. Russell came home from school one day and found his parents missing, and the mobile home that they lived in. Many years have passed since that date. And Russell has no idea of what happened to his parents. Russell was made a ward of the court and placed in the Children's home at West Palm Beach, Florida. Russell's favorite pastime at the children's home was running away. It did not take Russell long to earn his way into the Florida School for Boys at Marianna, Florida. *Marianna was a place that no kid should have to endure. The rules were impossible. The peer pressure was even worse. The punishment for violating the schools rules were lashes from a leather whip. Russell was whipped twice in 18 months.* 18 months later Russell was released from Marianna, with a heart of cold steel and a major attitude. Russell was placed with a foster care family until the age of 16. At which time Russell decided to go out on his own, destination California by thumb." Allow me to repeat that one passage again about Russell: *Marianna was a place that no kid should have to endure. The rules were impossible. The peer pressure was even worse. The punishment for violating the schools rules were lashes from a leather whip. Russell was whipped twice in 18 months.* I've been without an Internet connection since the last week of August and was (until Election Day of 2008) without a TV for even longer. I did have radio, newspaper, magazines, and the Internet at home during those times. One day after I'd gotten my wonderful new TV, I was relaxing in front of it half-asleep when, suddenly, a familiar story got my attention. I looked just in time to see one of the friends I'd met online (and, of course, hadn't been in touch with, as I didn't have his address or phone number handy with their having been stored in online files that were, obviously, not available to me--remember that my computer's breakdown was of a kind of rapture style) on CBS's Morning Show. Long story about my computer--which I won't go into now--but, to make this long story short, I hadn't bothered to go to pay directory assistance to look up any phone numbers thinking I would be back online any day now and would simply e-mail everybody. But this couldn't wait. I got Roger's phone number and called it and was given the message that he and his wife now had cell phones and to use them if they couldn't be reached at home. So I did. They were in New York. Oh yes! Before I'd called Roger, I'd called my mom to tell her that I'd just heard it announced on the CBS Morning Show that Roger would be on it, so she tuned in. I relaxed to get ready to watch it--and relaxed TOO much. I ended up going out like a light and not waking up until it was over. I think that there might have been two or three commercials and another story before Roger had come on for his part of the story--and that was just enough time to doze off when I closed my eyes for just a minute. However, my mom had seen it, and she was outraged! She described sickening stories that Roger hadn't told before where boys had actually ended up dying horrible deaths from the "discipline"--which turned out to go FAR beyond even the X-treme corporal punishment Roger had described in one of his stories. That was when I got Roger's number, and we made a three-way call to him. Roger now has a book out and a website about his experiences. http://www.geocities.com/fsbmarianna/ I would urge you to check it out--and, hopefully, to buy his book. If you know of anyone who suffered any level of abuse at this place--or, if you ARE someone who has gone through it--there's a place to tell your story. There are already some horror stories up, and I have the feeling that more will follow. This IYN-related site http://groups.google.com/group/invisible-youth-online is the first place I'm sharing this story, but it won't be the last! I'm copying it to paste other places. If you're a reader of it in another place, I hope that you will check out this IYN community and join us. We deal with children, teens, and young adults who have been abused/ neglected in a number of ways, and we are trying to get our message out! Wherever you read this message, please respond! Please visit the places I'm pointing you to with links because they're all about abuse/neglect of some of the most helpless among us: our youth!!! Roger and Russell: I'm so blessed to know both of you as mature men who are reaching out to make sure that other kids don't go through what you did--and worse! It's great to have you in my life--two adults who went through this hell as children and came out of it alive!!! Too many didn't...
• Anderson, Indiana
7 Jan 09
Aren't we blessed to have a friend like Roger!?! He's totally-amazing! And, of course, Russell's stitched to my heart with intricate embroidery thread! Two beautiful guys who have been through a lot and still managed to come out winners!
• Cambridge, England
6 Jan 09
It's a lot to read, AJ! I wonder how many here will take the time? Russell's story is - in the end - very uplifting and heart-warming. Before that, though, it goes into scenarios that no kid has a right to be part of. I'd like to say I could help and may very well find a way, in spite of being some 6000 miles from San Diego ... or will it become one of those wishes that get laid by because of more pressing and immediate things in my life? I have bookmarked the links you gave, however, which is a start. I often find that those things which need my attention or involvement tend to remind me of their existence in apparently random and unconnected ways over the next days, weeks or months and that a specific way in which I can be useful will develop with each reminder.
• Anderson, Indiana
6 Jan 09
Thanks for taking the time to read and comment, my wise and wonderful owl! And thanks so much for the request for friendship--and, of course, my answer is yes!!! I know you'll do what you can such as sending a positive thought our way--and, if you're so led, a positive prayer, too. When you responded to this, it draws attention to it on your MyLot profile page, so you have done something already. I know that you'll do something positive for these issues in one way or another because you path has crossed with the path of this discussion. You'll know what when it's time. I think that Russell has--by necessity to keep from losing his mind--blocked out parts of his past, but he does remember being whipped there and why. One time was for talking back to authorities, and the other time was just because one or more of his grades had slipped. A poor excuse for even a hand spanking, much less this. But he said that he thought that some of the guards weren't as rough on him for some reason. Perhaps, one reason was that he was feisty and might have grabbed that gosh-awful whip and gone after them. He thinks that it's because he sweet-talked them in some way. Roger's "discipline" was more extreme. Somebody had tattled on him for saying a four-letter word that starts with an s and is a synonym for feces in response to doing a belly-smacker at the institution's swimming pool. He said that he never ever did this. Anyway, he was whipped through his clothes so hard that his clothes stuck on to him. Even he didn't get the worst of it, as there were things done to these kids far worse than the whipping. Several didn't survive it. This story is just coming out, and I hope that nobody misuses power to silence it...