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Today's Adventures - The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith
Today's Adventures
This morning Doug's last holiday gift arrived -- I had gotten him a couple of sweatshirts with help from a friend.  \o/  So he is pleased with those.

Then we went out on an excursion.  We went to Bloomington, did at little gift-shopping that was very successful, and then went mall-crawling.  Doug found the 12-dot dominoes that he was looking for.  We ate pretzel bites.  We both found some great things in Earthbound.  He got a cloth banner of Ganesh and I got a pair of aurora-colored tie-dye pants plus some incense.  It was a lot of fun.

I'm not inclined to return to Eastland, though.  It's a lovely mall, but they've just joined the flood of malls banning minors without an adult during some days and hours (obviously, the ones those people are most likely to be free to visit malls).  But this one is extra heinous: it can't just be any legal adult, it must be a parent or guardian 21 or older.  Think carefully.  This means a teen parent, or a legal adult aged 18-20, cannot take their own child(ren) to the mall.  A married couple not using birth control could have 2-3 children in those three years.  I hope the mall gets sued and/or boycotted to death.  I mean, I used to love malls, but when I heard the announcement -- they were playing it over loudspeakers to make sure everyone knows how second-class some citizens are -- I felt guilty about having spent money there. >_<  At a time when malls are struggling to survive, they sure are determined to shoot themselves in the head.  No wonder so many people are switching to electronic commerce.  *sigh*  I need to jot down some notes for how Terramagne handles this stuff.

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Comments
rix_scaedu From: rix_scaedu Date: December 30th, 2017 06:07 am (UTC) (Link)
I can understand banning school children on their own during school hours on school days, but at times when they re free to do their own thing and spend their own money?

Also, does no-one under 18 work in any of their stores or centre management?
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: December 30th, 2017 06:23 am (UTC) (Link)

Thoughts

>> I can understand banning school children on their own during school hours on school days, <<

Many places do that, and in fact, will report them to the police as escaped livestock to be recaptured and caged properly.

>> but at times when they re free to do their own thing and spend their own money? <<

Because society has been rapidly decreasing what little freedom young people have. It's almost all regimented now. A number of places have started having police pick up any unaccompanied minor and take them to the police station, even if they're playing in a park a few blocks from home with parental permission, and even though it is not in fact illegal for minors to go about on their own.

And then society wonders why more youth are anxious, depressed, fat, isolated, and lacking in social skills.

>>Also, does no-one under 18 work in any of their stores or centre management?<<

Presumably not anymore, unless they make an exception for youth who are sufficiently of use to adults.
From: rhodielady_47 Date: December 30th, 2017 06:48 am (UTC) (Link)
I used to love prowling the local mall back in my late teens, then again, I'd already been taught how to behave politely in public.
Unfortunately I can understand why the malls are banning minors--thanks to having known a couple of mall cops--and having heard their "war" stories.

Most of the damage, shop-lifting, fighting and other disturbances that happen at malls are done by people who are less than 21 years old. These are the people who also spend the least amount of money inside malls AS WELL AS scaring off the adults who are the real customers of malls.

Malls really don't want to have to exclude anybody, since they know without being told that it's really bad for business/public relations, but they also know that if they are to have any chance at all of staying open--THEY ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO KEEP THEMSELVES SEEN AS BEING A SAFE PLACE TO SHOP IN THE PUBLIC (i.e. ADULT) EYE.

I saw this happen in the town I grew up in. The very first mall in the center of town developed a bad reputation as being an unsafe place to shop and the next thing we knew, all the big dry-goods stores moved to the suburbs and it was left with only little tacky stores with cheap merchandise that no one wanted to make a special trip to the mall for.
Finally that mall had to make over its empty large stores as commercial office space--just to keep from going bankrupt.

So, I hope you won't mind my asking you how Terramagne handles the destructive minor problem?
:^|



Edited at 2017-12-30 06:49 am (UTC)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: December 30th, 2017 07:20 am (UTC) (Link)

Well ...

>> Unfortunately I can understand why the malls are banning minors--thanks to having known a couple of mall cops--and having heard their "war" stories. <<

I keep hearing that, but:

1) The misbehavior of some is absolutely no excuse for discriminating against an entire group for a trait they cannot help. America has had this fight repeatedly and that is the legal precedent. A mall is of course free to ban individuals who break the law or make a nuisance of themselves, regardless of age; but not free to discriminate en masse. Public places are obligated to be accessible to the public.

2) Youth misbehavior is widely based in alienation from society. Driving them out of the public sphere will not only alienate them further, but incline them to sneak off in places with zero supervision where they'll get into even worse trouble. This is the opposite of helpful.

>> Most of the damage, shop-lifting, fighting and other disturbances that happen at malls are done by people who are less than 21 years old. <<

That's because almost all crime is committed by people in that age range. Young people have to learn how to be civilized. They absolutely will not unless they are not only in the company of widely varied older people, but given specific feedback based on how well or poorly they behave. If all youth are punished and excluded from society for being young and rambunctious, then society will wind up with people hitting 18 and still having no social skills. This is already becoming a problem. I cannot stop people from doing stupid things to make it worse, but I can point out why their actions are stupid and I can choose not to give them my money.

>> These are the people who also spend the least amount of money inside malls AS WELL AS scaring off the adults who are the real customers of malls. <<

That does not match my observations. I know it's what the malls like to say, but when I look at mall crowds -- in an actually busy mall -- the majority are teens or young adults, and another big chunk are seniors. Middle-aged adults are too busy to spend hours in malls; they're more prone to a quick trip now and then plus a binge in December. People who spend hours in malls get hungry and buy food, get bored and buy arcade tokens or movie tickets, see things they want and buy that. They're also junior consumers. They grow up in malls, they'll keep coming as adults. You drive them away as teens, they are not coming back later because now they think malls are run by assholes. They'll shop online, and certainly they should not shop at a mall that has treated them as untouchables. These factors are playing into the demise of malls, because when you take out the youth and seniors, there aren't many people left. The big crowds I used to see are just gone. And while I'm not fond of shoulder-to-shoulder holiday crush, an empty mall is a sad place where stores struggle to survive, and a discriminatory mall just makes me angry, so I don't want to go there anyway. Now I'm not a good benchmark for most social purposes, but when I'm seeing a lot of empty malls? Maybe I'm not way out on the fringe this time.

>>So, I hope you won't mind my asking you how Terramagne handles the destructive minor problem?<<

I'm working on that post, yes.
From: rhodielady_47 Date: December 30th, 2017 09:56 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Well ...

You make some excellent points.
I think a large part of the problem these days is that non-guardian adults are by-and-large legally prevented from correcting misbehaving minors.
Sadly, the best time to correct a misbehavior is right when it happens and not as an after-thought when it finally becomes so bad that the police are brought in to deal with it.

One of my favorite punishments is handcuffing misbehaving minors to their guardians. That way the guardian gets punished for not having done their parental duty by that minor. I first heard about it when a teacher I once knew told me that was how her school dealt with the problem of overwhelming school-wide misbehavior. Three strikes and the minor wasn't allowed back to school until a guardian came with them--to keep the minor under supervision.
Word quickly made the rounds AFTER a large bunch of parents found themselves having to attend school with their darling offspring and the school stopped having such a massive misbehavior problem inside of six weeks.
Yes, the parents were resentful, but what other choice did the teachers and principal have?
:^\
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: December 30th, 2017 11:07 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Well ...

>> You make some excellent points.<<

A lively discussion of this topic is happening over on Dreamwidth, including a number of points that I myself had overlooked.

>> I think a large part of the problem these days is that non-guardian adults are by-and-large legally prevented from correcting misbehaving minors.<<

Absolutely. That's half of it. The other half is the steady destruction of family life, from extended to nuclear and now it's down to pairs and singles. O_O

Put the two together, and you realize that now nobody is raising a lot of the kids. Well, if nobody raises them, they don't learn much about how to be part of society. This is bad for everyone.

>> Sadly, the best time to correct a misbehavior is right when it happens and not as an after-thought when it finally becomes so bad that the police are brought in to deal with it.<<

Poor behavior almost always begins at low levels, unless kids are so traumatized (like Shiv) that they go berserk quickly at a young age. If you interrupt it at the stage of spitting on the floor and saying rude things, then it's much less likely to grow into theft and assault. If you let it continue or use ineffective interventions, then it's more likely to get worse. And the police aren't all that effective, because putting wild young things in juvenile hall definitely makes them worse. You might as well throw water on a grease fire.

>> One of my favorite punishments is handcuffing misbehaving minors to their guardians. That way the guardian gets punished for not having done their parental duty by that minor.<<

*sigh* Punishment hurts, discipline teaches. Handcuffing neither teaches the children better behavior nor makes the parent better at parenting. It just shames people and erodes their relationship with each other and the school. And what about parents who can't come to school or they'll get fired? Or they come, and do lose their job? That's a disaster waiting to happen. Plus the extremely disturbing connection between handcuffs and the school-to-prison pipeline.

>>Yes, the parents were resentful, but what other choice did the teachers and principal have?<<

Try actually teaching things. Montessori methods work brilliantly because science is a thing. Positive discipline in general works, both at home and at school. Also of vital importance, modeling works, and if you don't model things the kids will definitely ignore "do as I say, not as I do." Major problems may need professional assistance -- I would ask why those children are behaving that badly, what their home life is like, and what if any parenting skills are in play. If you're teaching "might makes right" then remember the tables can always be turned; that's a very dangerous rule to use. What I see, more and more, is that nobody wants to do the work. So it doesn't get done, and then it is everybody's problem.

Here's the T-American mall post.
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