Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Donovan's "Plan for Milwaukee" Taken From The Movies

Milwaukee Alderman Bob Donovan, going though media attention withdrawal, came out with his "Plan for Milwaukee."

One could summarize his plan as "Children should neither be seen nor heard."

His plan consists of basically two concepts: Creating a police state and putting every youth (or at least the black ones) in the city in an institution.

For the police state, he proposes more cops, giving the increased police force more overtime and putting cameras everywhere. And here I thought we were in a fiscal crisis.  Basically, this is a common theme in many movies, from 1984 to The Matrix, where the citizenry is always under surveillance and face stern consequences if they take one step out of the strict guidelines of the government.

But then Donovan does his best Baron Bomburst impression and comes up with a number of ambiguous anti-child proposals:
  • Reform the juvenile justice system 
  • Stricter curfew enforcement (well that could go into the police state theme as well).
  • Orphanages and Boarding schools 
  • Revamp the schools.
It should be noted that he doesn't say what's wrong with the juvenile justice system or the schools or how he would like to see them "fixed."  Just that they're broken and that someone else needs to fix them.

When one considers Donovan's past statements and posturings, it would not be a great leap of logic to understand that he means that the laws on kids should be made draconian, enforced with military precision and that the kids need to be put in an institution of some sorts, where they can be thoroughly controlled and kept away from the public. That way, mature adults  like Donovan don't have to be bothered with fixing the actual problems, like the inherent racism in the region, the rampant unemployment, or the severe lack of constructive activities for these kids.

But not only does Donovan fail to offer any constructive suggestions or solutions, the proposals he does present will only increase the problems.  As any mental health staffer, or jailer, or any other worker in an institution can tell you, any person in such a place can become thoroughly institutionalized and no longer to effectively function in society.  

Then society will have to pay a much higher price, both in human and financial costs, to have this institutionalized population treated so that they can become a positive member of society again. Either that, or pay for the person to be an institution for the rest of their lives, which gets to pretty costly as well.

He, and we, would be better off if he just donned his fuzzy crown and robe and stepped out and said, "I hate children." Then he'd have his fifteen minutes of attention that he desperately seeks and go back to his fantasy world while the rest of us go about trying to actually fixing the problems facing our society.

1 comment:

  1. Unfortunately, the same locals who consider Mark Belling an intellectual probably consider this clown a statesman. Fortunately, there's no way he could be elected mayor. His screed can be summed up in a sentence: Bring back the 50s!