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To the editor:
Thanks for writing this article. I think it was very well-written. However, as the principal of a school, I often see kids whose parents are in jail or struggle with addiction and homelessness. There is another important side to the story.
I am frustrated with the standard of care for kids in California. It’s lower than that of animals. Kids don’t choose their parents. Or where they live. The suffering of innocent, vulnerable kids while adult parents get chance after chance to figure it out is disheartening.
I’ve even had the opportunity to sit in court during the last year when I was waiting for a hearing for the man who stole my 10-year-old niece’s bike and assaulted her on the rail trail. While there, I heard countless defendants use their kids as an excuse.
Ironically, I even knew one of them and knew for a fact what he was saying was 100% lies. Upon returning to school, I called the mother of the children being used as excuses for “house arrest” and she was livid. That dad had never had custody, and never had visitations.
Anyway, sorry, I don’t feel bad that Santa Cruz jail is “the worst place ever.” Adults suffering from mental health or substance abuse disorders need to be adults and get help, not make excuses. Too often kids are damaged emotionally and physically.
That’s the real tragedy.