Comments about ‘Dan Liljenquist: New DOJ guidelines would hurt school discipline’

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Published: Thursday, Jan. 16 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

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Tooele, UT

Re: ". . . DOJ seems to suggest that racial discrimination is the driving force behind the school discipline statistics, ignoring other potentially significant societal factors . . . ."

Of course it does. Holder's thoroughly politicized Department of "Justice" starts from the unsupportable assumption that ALL the nation's ills stem from race-based discrimination. And its policies in ALL areas reflect that assumption.

This is just the latest in a long, long series of disingenuous Obama-regime vote-buying measures, scams that promise callow, low-information voters that their "friends" in power will illegally benefit them, addressing past discrimination by imposing present reverse discrimination.

It's all part of their plan to balkanize and tribalize Americans.

To divide and conquer.

Irony Guy
Bountiful, Utah

Dan, I don't think you've thought this through. Policies "indiscriminately applied" do not address the very issue you raise, i.e., the many factors that lead to the disproportionate punishments meted out to black students. Instead of dis-integrating our schools by retaliating against and expelling minority students, what are we doing to address those behavioral factors? May I suggest that your party is doing everything it can to destroy the lives of those caught in the poverty culture? The GOP fights against pre-schools, full funding for educational services, unemployment insurance, TANF, SNAP, Medicaid expansion, ad nauseam. The Republican "Marie Antoinette" approach to children at risk just makes things worse. What about the crying need for school counselors right here in Utah to help deal with the "factors" you raise? Your column is an exercise in question-begging.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Hurt school discipline? Who cares about school discipline? How will it hurt law enforcement?

This policy seems to tie their hands completely. It opens up every investigation for a law suit (IF the lawyers can even cast a suspicion on the possibility that somebody took race, religion or anything... into account when investigating).

How do you do police work (which is often based on hunches, experience, observing human behavior, and the officer's observations of what is out of the ordinary) when collecting evidence, questioning people of interest, finding and investigating what doesn't fit, and solving crimes?

If we can't take anything into consideration when investigating (or it may be challenged as being influenced by "profiling" in court)... any case can be thrown out! What investigation is going to be able to withstand smart lawyers who know how to use this new law to limit what can be investigated and dismantle any case if they even think they violated this rule or used anything that may be considered "Profiling" by anybody?

Police work sometimes requires some profiling (not racial, but profiling in general). How would the Mentalist do his job without any profiling?

empathic heart
West Jordan, UT

I'm a socially progressive, financially conservative and in many other ways conflicted school counselor here in Utah. The article and each comment has elements I agree with, each has points I recognize as valid but disagree with, and each has something I would question the validity and usefulness of. And yet, I'm better informed of the nuances of the issue than I was 10 minutes ago.
Many thanks for conflicting ideas to consider... that's how I grow in understanding.

Salt Lake City, UT

Unfortunately both Holder and Liljenquist have missed a bigger issue, and that is the over-reaction of authoritarian figures to purported "crimes" in schools as well as outside of them. This is affecting all children, whether minority or not.

Schools have called the cops to come in and handcuff children who are guilty of such trivial infractions as scribbling on the top of a desk. One girl (non-minority) was suspended from her school for possessing an L-shaped piece of paper. No joke.

Salt Lake City, UT

The tentacles of the federal government continue to wrap themselves more tightly around our personal and work lives. The regulations and out of control testing requirements are already making the school system an unfriendly place for both students and employees. Before long, teachers who try and maintain any reasonable standards of classroom behavior will be forced out of the system. Better update my resumé.

Johnny Moser
Thayne, WY

School discipline was so much easier when it was a 1x6 with holes drilled into the first 18 inches while the last 6 inches looked like a handle. When we as a society decided that this kind of discipline was no longer acceptable we decided that we would let the student rule the school and the faculty and staff became the hostage.

Salt Lake City, UT

I wish the D-News would employ a teacher to write about education issues--not an ex-politician, not a lawyer, not an administrator--get an expert, from the classroom, to comment on these issues. There are plenty of competent thinkers and writers who also teach. Everyone these days seem to be an expert on education--the old analogy, just because you've flown in an airplane doesn't make you qualified to fly it. This is the problem with education policy right now--teachers know how to fix every problem there is, but no one bothers to ask them, their voices don't count. (and yes, I'm a teacher!)

Salt Lake City, UT

I agree with you. School policy is frequently made by people who have never stepped into a classroom as an adult. Case in point - the State Legislature. And even the State School Board members have sold their souls to the feds by implementing Common Core. Education has nothing to do with what is best for kids. It is driven by money, politics, and fear of lawsuits.

Midwest City, USA, OK

From extensive, painful experience both personal and observed, the answer to most social issues seems to be "strengthen the family". Why is this never a proposed government solution?

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