Back in January rioters entered the U.S. Capitol and let mayhem reign. With video cameras, postings from social media and other techniques, a number of these people have been or are in the process of being tried in court for their actions. A few weeks ago, an autistic child was attacked by fellow students at a local school. There’s an abundance of video evidence out there — just google it, you don’t need social media to find it. Thankfully, several television news stations have taken up this situation. We are being told that it is under investigation.

With all the video evidence, what is the delay? I realize the suspects are minors and we won’t be privy to their identities, but if your family was attacked wouldn’t you feel better knowing those who carried out the attack were facing charges? We aren’t hearing a lot. My suspicion is that the powers that be hope this will die down and just go away because, in my opinion, there’s clearly negligence on the part of the staff/faculty and there’s very serious reason to believe this isn’t an isolated incident but part of a systemic pattern of harassment on this child that has been ignored and dismissed for years.

By the way, the media knows the victim’s name — how is that fair? Victims aren’t treated fairly — ask any rape victim. Their name is plastered in the headlines while their suspected attacker is innocent until proven otherwise. The victim is already “convicted.”

The attackers aren’t the only people at fault. We have children standing around allowing it, videoing it and I don’t think a lot of them ran for help or dialed 9-1-1. While I am strictly opposed to students having cell phones at school, I am ever so thankful some did. There is evidence available. USE IT! They did in Washington D.C. Are we not as advanced in our criminology techniques as to use what is available? If we aren’t, that’s fine. Submit this to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

While you’re at it, be sure to see how many times this student has been harassed and it has been reported to the school administration over the past few years and I believe you’ll see a pattern that has sadly been ignored. The faculty and administration bear some responsibility for allowing things to go this far. Even if fines and penalties are handed out, it isn’t fair. After all, they’ll be paid with your tax dollars, not hard-earned income and the fines will go to the state and state department of education. There must be civil action. This child has suffered and deserves some form of reparation. If we don’t draw a hard line now, this will only continue, and a student will be seriously injured or killed. It’s happened in other places. Check the headlines.

Finally, this same school recently dismissed a counselor. There were rumors of academic fraud. Whatever happened was serious enough to warrant a dismissal. Why has this issue gone silent? Someone is responsible for allowing this and we need to hear the facts. Are any students in jeopardy? What is/has been done to rectify this situation? My fear is that there may be students who were impacted negatively and might possibly have missed academic honors and/or financial aid awards such as scholarship money — which can’t be “reissued.”

I’m seeing a lack of ownership and responsibility at multiple levels here and I am seriously concerned that our school system may be headed in the wrong direction with varying levels of indifference and seemingly poor leadership. We, THE PEOPLE, who pay our tax dollars in good faith, deserve answers. Each child deserves a school free of this level of harassment.

Sincerely Concerned,

Jamie Sands

2130 Vales Mill Road, Pulaski, TN 38478

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