[LMB] OT: sort-of -- Internet/computer access for the poor

Paula Lieberman paal at gis.net
Thu Sep 22 19:32:05 BST 2011


I hate to say it, but that;s what governmental service agencies and sections 
such as Child Protection Services are for, specifically, to remove custody 
of minors from abusive family conditions and place them  into hopefully 
better living conditions.

The worst cases.... there was a family in Massachusetts where the kids had 
food and clothing ONLY from the kindness of neighbors, the parents were drug 
abusers and paid no attention to anything except what got them drugs and 
being on drugs.  The state took custody of the kids.

And why should the kids' textbooks be any more inviolate than anything else? 
A device marked "property of CityMiddleSchool is NOT going to be something 
most people are going to have any interest in buying....


-----Original Message----- 
From: Claire Nollet
Sent: Thursday, September 22, 2011 2:19 PM
To: Discussion of the works of Lois McMaster Bujold.
Subject: Re: [LMB] OT: sort-of -- Internet/computer access for the poor

On Thu, Sep 22, 2011 at 2:11 PM, I <iosef at gothic.net.au> wrote:

> >This has already happened with things like DVD players: now you can get a
> new one at the Supermarket for $40, they are not worth the effort to take
> even after they have broken in. To visible for the dollar or two they 
> might
> fetch.<
>

I saw a DVD player at the supermarket for $20 last Christmas.

re giving computers to kids, though ... I think it's a good idea in
general.

But I flash back to that episode of "The Wire" where middle school student
Wallace always looks scruffy because his drug addled family even steals his
school clothes of khakis and polo shirt to sell for drugs.  His teacher
hears about this from another student, and tells Wallace to come to school
early every morning to shower (no running water at Wallace's home, and no
soap or shampoo), and he, the teacher, will personally take Wallace's
clothes home every night to wash them, and hand them to the kid every day at
school so Wallace won't take them home where they'll be stolen.

I often wondered how accurate that was, given that the clothes couldn't have
fetched more than a dollar or two, but most of the incidents on "The Wire"
were taken from actual events, so I suppose it's possible.

I think that in a really bad neighborhood, where the families of these kids
are all drug addicts, that even ugly computers would get stolen by the
addicts, even if they only brought a dollar or two on the black market. 




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