Today’s mood brought to you by Rage Against the Machine.

Today’s mood:

 

The reasons for my rage?

Oh my God, so many!

But we’ll go with this one for now:

Rick Perry’s Juvie Record

Why did the GOP presidential contender wait six years to clean up the culture of child rape at Texas youth detention centers?

For years, the Texas juvenile justice system was wracked by reports of rape, unsanitary conditions, and physical abuse. According to statistics submitted by the [Texas Youth Commission] in 2007, 83 percent of residents who requested counseling that year were ultimately diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. At one youth facility in central Texas, the mistreatment and squalid conditions (feces on the walls and bed-sheets, steel bars blocking fire escapes) were so bad they left no choice but for the agency to shut it down entirely.

Gov. Rick Perry did not take swift action to address the problem, which his office knew about for years. Allegations of systematic mistreatment at TYC facilities first came to the Governor’s desk in 2001, when then-Rep. Dick Armey (R-Texas) forwarded along a complaint that his office had received. That was six years before media coverage of the conditions in juvenile detention centers launched a public scandal. And critics of Perry, who is now a frontrunner for the GOP presidential nomination, point out that he received tens of thousands of dollars from lobbyists and executives for a firm tied to some of the worst abuses.

Far from the picture initially painted by Perry, of a shocking scandal that was dealt with swiftly and emphatically, his administration had sat on the concerns for years.

The TYC’s own numbers tell the tale. The commission officially reported 535 cases of abuse at its facilities in 2002, more than double the total from just four years earlier. Likewise, the number of residents diagnosed with mental illnesses skyrocketed during that same period, from 27 percent in 1995 to nearly half in 2002. And despite his office’s initial denials, top Perry staffers had been formally briefed on abuses at juvenile justice facilities as early as 2005. In 2006, President Bush’s Department of Justice even initiated a probe of the TYC conditions, but declined to intervene because it was not able to prove that any victims sustained “bodily injury.”

Child rape as a control method. Sure. Why the fuck not.

To read the rest in Mother Jones, click here.

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And of course, also in the rage department you’ll find the Troy Davis case — please, please, if you haven’t done so yet, please act to save the life of a man who is almost certainly innocent of the crime for which he is slated to be killed next Wednesday. For details, petitions, etc click here.

Crossposted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles.

6 Comments

  1. socioprof

     /  September 12, 2011

    I came over to check out the awesomeness that I heard was your new layout. It is great (as is the link to Cake Wrecks that I see to my right). Now that I am here and I see your post on Rick Perry and Troy Davis, I am outraged. I have signed Color of Change, Change.org, and Amnesty’s petitions. Now, all I can do is get others to do their part and then I can pray. I can also pray that Rick Perry comes nowhere near the White House and that Texas will soon see the error of their ways and kick him out of the state house as well. I strongly considered moving to TX until I learned about him. Now, I’m trying to get my friends to flee his craziness and ensure that he’s not released onto the rest of the nation.

    • Thank you! And yes, my good God yes — I have literally learned nothing about Rick Perry that has been anything other than grossly negative. Bring your friends up north, and we’ll just lock the door on Perry in one of his own juvenile centers.

  2. At the Parole Consideration Hearing the JPB determines whether or not to release the youth on parole and under what conditions. If the youth is to be released to parole the JPB may impose special conditions of parole in addition to establishing the standard rules which include paying restitution maintaining contact with their parole agent submitting to searches and not leaving the state without permission.

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