Mind you, a FAN made that thing. Oy. Via.
Today she sent me an e-mail, and has graciously allowed me to share it with you. She wrote it to a radio host who she calls about once a month as the teen correspondent.
What a remarkable young woman:
I probably won't make it to the chat room or onto the phone to your show tonight because it is "ornament night" here with my host family and I will be covered in glitter glue and fluorescent paint all evening. But I want to put in my 2 cents worth on the sentencing of Balloon Boy's parents.I've just looked at the news story on 3 different sites, and everyone is focusing on whether the punishment is enough. I've heard you refer to this as America's punishment fetish.No one has said whether the kids are in foster care now, if they're staying with other relatives, or how their parents' sentence will affect them. And THAT is what matters.My dad left town when I was six and I have never seen him again. My mom went to prison when I was 11 and I have only seen her twice. The state of Texas may be glad they got a minor league drug user (and sometimes dealer) off the streets, but they never gave me or my brother a second thought.That's not exactly true. The county took an interest in whether or not I was physically safe. But only after I wasn't.I am becoming an academic superstar in spite of all of the people who think I am a loser because of who my parents are. I love school and I love learning and I have found my own way -- but huge numbers of kids with parents in jail never graduate HS and certainly don't graduate as Texas Scholars with ambitions for the ivy league.I call the family I live with my host family and I pretend that I am an exchange student because I hate the way foster care sounds. But some of the other kids who live here are in foster care. The only difference is that my minister facilitated this "placement" and the county signed off.
The other kids here came through the county first. We are all VERY LUCKY that we're with a great family and the worst humiliation here is that we'll all have our hodge-podge home-made ornaments photographed and saved.The Heenes are lousy parents and idiots, but why is the media so obsessed with the conditions of their sentence and don't even mention what the next 10 or 12 years will be like for their kids? Will they be together?
The parents will have supervised probation from the state, but will they also have supervised parenting? Will the Heene kids have a chance to make their own Christmas tree ornaments with glitter and feathers and green poster board?
Am I the only one asking those questions?
We need a whole lot more teens like this one. I am proud to count her as a friend.
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