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Why Can't She Walk to School? (Only 13% of kids walk to school in 2009)
New York Times ^ | September 13, 2009 | Jan Hoffman

Posted on 09/14/2009 7:40:44 AM PDT by Arec Barrwin

September 13, 2009 Why Can’t She Walk to School? By JAN HOFFMAN

TO get to school, the child leaves home by herself, proudly walking down the boulevard in a suburb of a small city in upstate New York. The crossing guard helps her at the intersection. She lives only a block and a half from school. Yet she walks by older children waiting with parents for buses to the same school.

She is 7, a second-grader, and her mother, Katie, hears the raised-eyebrow remarks: ‘Are you sure you want to be doing this?’ Katie said friends ask.

‘She’s just so pretty. She’s just so ... blond.’ A friend said, ‘I heard that Jaycee Dugard story and I thought of your daughter.’ And they say, ‘I’d never do that with my kid: I wouldn’t trust my kid with the street,’ said Katie, a stay-at-home mother, who asked that her full identity be withheld to protect her children.

Katie, too, is tormented by the abduction monsters embedded in modern parenting. Yet she wants to encourage her daughter’s independence. Somehow, walking to school has become a political act when it’s this uncommon, she said. Somebody has to be first.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: childhood; crime; neighborhoods; parenting; school
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Sad
1 posted on 09/14/2009 7:40:45 AM PDT by Arec Barrwin
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To: Arec Barrwin

My kids walk — with me or my wife.

Sorry, it’s not safe anymore.


2 posted on 09/14/2009 7:41:54 AM PDT by Jewbacca (The residents of Iroquois territory may not determine whether Jews may live in Jerusalem.)
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To: Arec Barrwin

This aint the 70’s anymore...

My daughter walks to school...with me...and my .357.


3 posted on 09/14/2009 7:43:05 AM PDT by Crim
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To: Arec Barrwin

Traffic. If my kids went to school, it wouldn’t be safe for them to walk to the elementary school just across the road from our subdivision. I nearly got killed trying to walk over there to vote. Now I drive my big van less than 1/2 mile for elections.


4 posted on 09/14/2009 7:45:00 AM PDT by Tax-chick ("This is our duty: to zot their sorry arses into the next time zone." ~ Admin Mod)
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To: Arec Barrwin

Geez ... I walked to school Every day from KINDERGARTEN til 7th Grade, when I moved to an place where school was 12 miles AWAY!!

And the cute little blonde walker and to her mother I say... GOOD FOR YOU.


5 posted on 09/14/2009 7:45:32 AM PDT by gwilhelm56 (If Policy disagreement is RACISM, You are NOT READY to have a MINORITY as President.)
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To: Arec Barrwin

I’ve never been on a school bus, and I’m thirty-something. Homeschooling advantage #795.


6 posted on 09/14/2009 7:46:42 AM PDT by 668 - Neighbor of the Beast
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To: Arec Barrwin
I walked about a half-mile to school, even in below zero weather.

During the cold weather Mom always made sure I at least had a bowl of hot oatmeal under my belt...but walking 1/2 mile with that stuff running down my leg was no fun.

7 posted on 09/14/2009 7:47:29 AM PDT by capt. norm (Never underestimate the power of very stupid people in large groups.)
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To: gwilhelm56

I walked to school every day from First grade on, until I got a car. But times are different. In all those years I was never even approached by a stranger. Now, the consequences are so dire, it’s just not worth it.


8 posted on 09/14/2009 7:47:57 AM PDT by Republic of Texas (Socialism Always Fails)
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To: Arec Barrwin

I don’t like it, but it’s a sad reality.
Until Rule of Law is re-established, it isn’t safe.


9 posted on 09/14/2009 7:48:13 AM PDT by Nevermore (...just a typical cracker, clinging to my Constitutional rights...)
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To: capt. norm

Through 4 feet of snow, 6 miles, 1 pair of shoes for three kids...uphill in both directions.


10 posted on 09/14/2009 7:50:34 AM PDT by swain_forkbeard (Rationality may not be sufficient, but it is necessary.)
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To: Arec Barrwin
She lives only a block and a half from school. Yet she walks by older children waiting with parents for buses to the same school.

From a pure safety perspective, I won't second-guess parents who want their kids to ride a bus.

But I'm calling BS on part of this story. When I was a kid, I had to live 2 miles from the school in order to be allowed on the bus. I couldn't take the bus. My neighbor could, because he lived that much further away (about 100 feet).

Now, I know times are different, and I know cities are different, but in these times of tight budgets, are they really having school buses take kids "a block and a half"????

11 posted on 09/14/2009 7:50:47 AM PDT by ClearCase_guy (Play the Race Card -- lose the game.)
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To: capt. norm

Uphill!

Both ways!!!


12 posted on 09/14/2009 7:51:13 AM PDT by Haiku Guy (If You have a Right / To the Service I provide / I must be a Slave)
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To: capt. norm

You made me spew!!!!!!!!!!!


13 posted on 09/14/2009 7:51:13 AM PDT by netmilsmom (Psalm 109:8 - Let his days be few; and let another take his office)
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To: capt. norm

Uphill!

Both ways!!!


14 posted on 09/14/2009 7:51:19 AM PDT by Haiku Guy (If You have a Right / To the Service I provide / I must be a Slave)
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To: Arec Barrwin

Uhh Because the G*D Damned courts and liberals let perverts, rapist and criminal run free. I would not let my teenagers walk to school in today’s America.


15 posted on 09/14/2009 7:51:40 AM PDT by US Navy Vet
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To: swain_forkbeard

...”.uphill in both directions.”

sounds like a tower of babel!

you must be in heaven by now


16 posted on 09/14/2009 7:51:49 AM PDT by George from New England (escaped CT 2006; now living north of Tampa Bay)
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To: Arec Barrwin

I usually rode my bike, does that count?


17 posted on 09/14/2009 7:52:12 AM PDT by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics.)
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To: Arec Barrwin

My son just started walking this year as we live next door to the middle school while his elementary was several miles away.

He loves being able to have the independence.

And if you look at the statistics, kidnappings & child abductions are the same now as they were 30 years ago. We just have 24 hour news & helicopter parenting nowadays.

But, I don’t blame parents for feeling insecure seeing what the media does to us.


18 posted on 09/14/2009 7:52:23 AM PDT by KosmicKitty (WARNING: Hormonally crazed woman ahead!!)
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To: Arec Barrwin

Forced busing in the South killed off most walking to school.


19 posted on 09/14/2009 7:52:31 AM PDT by wardaddy (Bro and his czars...we have tar, feathers and rails waiting...and a road outta town..)
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To: Arec Barrwin

Drop the concealed carry age to six? I know, I know...

Colonel, USAFR


20 posted on 09/14/2009 7:53:05 AM PDT by jagusafr (Kill the red lizard, Lord! - nod to C.S. Lewis)
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To: Arec Barrwin

So terribly sad that our children can’t walk to school, to the store, to a friends house...all the places we went when we were young. I blame the permissive society, and by that I mean permitting perverts to live among us. Many years ago perverts just disappeared after they were found out...and since there is no such thing as a real “life sentence” anymore it would be a good thing if this started happening again. JMHO!


21 posted on 09/14/2009 7:53:07 AM PDT by pepperdog (As Israel goes, so goes America!)
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To: Arec Barrwin

One mile over and two miles back...

I think if I lived in a place where my kids couldn’t walk to school, I’d move...


22 posted on 09/14/2009 7:53:20 AM PDT by babygene
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To: Arec Barrwin

One mile over and two miles back...

I think if I lived in a place where my kids couldn’t walk to school, I’d move...


23 posted on 09/14/2009 7:53:20 AM PDT by babygene
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To: Arec Barrwin

I know a few districts in PA where the kids still walk (because courts have ruled the local districts must pay the cost for transporting private and parochial school students too...so they don’t transport anybody as a way of getting around that) Well, okay...most don’t actually walk, they have Soccer Mom Caravan Traffic Jams at 8:15 in the morning.


24 posted on 09/14/2009 7:53:26 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: KosmicKitty

true


25 posted on 09/14/2009 7:54:07 AM PDT by wardaddy (Bro and his czars...we have tar, feathers and rails waiting...and a road outta town..)
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To: Jewbacca
Sorry, it’s not safe anymore.

It never was. I was attacked by bullies all of the time. And even back then, there were numerous warnings about strangers offering candy.

I'd be about as likely to let a kid walk to school today in the same town I did. I would just make sure the kid had pepper spray and some pretty specific instructions about what to do if.
26 posted on 09/14/2009 7:54:34 AM PDT by mysterio
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To: Jewbacca

In our city of 2.2 miles, the parents had to fight to keep crossing guards for the kids.

I’m a homeschooling mom and fought with them. We have no sidewalks and people drive like maniacs. AND we’ve had a couple kids approached by “adults”.

If my kids walked to the school, I’d be walking with them.


27 posted on 09/14/2009 7:55:21 AM PDT by netmilsmom (Psalm 109:8 - Let his days be few; and let another take his office)
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To: KosmicKitty
And if you look at the statistics, kidnappings & child abductions are the same now as they were 30 years ago

Yep. Same with the climate and natural disasters although the MSM got us all to think things are so much worse than they ever were before in history.

I suspect that most parents have had no abductions in their neighborhoods ever but think their child will be the first.

The inevitable result of Big Brother on people's psyche's.

28 posted on 09/14/2009 7:55:44 AM PDT by what's up
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To: Arec Barrwin
Kids don't walk anymore because Federal and State governments have failed at protecting the people.
29 posted on 09/14/2009 7:55:46 AM PDT by Vision ("Did I not say to you that if you would believe, you would see the glory of God?" John 11:40)
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To: swain_forkbeard

And we ate dirt, and we were thankful for the dirt.


30 posted on 09/14/2009 7:56:21 AM PDT by dfwgator
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To: Arec Barrwin

I walked about 1/2 mile to school from first to sixth grade unless it was pouring. I also rode my bike where we just stuck them in the rack. Didn’t need locks at all. The bike was always there after school. We never even thought about them getting stolen.


31 posted on 09/14/2009 7:57:49 AM PDT by AnnGora (As a result of the Stimulus Bill, Napoleon has no more tots to give.)
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To: Republic of Texas
I always lived about 2 blocks and not only walked to school but walked home for lunch...'cept when my dad picked me up on his way home for lunch.

The fun part was there were always several kids walking along together.

I can also vouch that it's possible to do things, like throwing rocks at another kid, that gets you pops...in the 2nd grade!

It's sad how the world has changed...and NOT for the better!

32 posted on 09/14/2009 7:58:14 AM PDT by lonestar (Obama is turning Bush's "mess" into a catastrophe.)
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To: Arec Barrwin

When we lived a block and a half from our elementary school, our children who attended there WALKED sometimes alone and sometimes with me. There were some parents who thought I was crazy and/or neglectful. But somehow the children survived. It helped teach our older children a bit of responsibility because they had to make sure the younger ones were okay. And it taught the younger ones that they shouldn’t necessarily rely on their older siblings who may be all about them. hah!


33 posted on 09/14/2009 7:58:48 AM PDT by petitfour (Are you a Dead Fish American?)
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To: Arec Barrwin

Agreed that it is sad. My own experience was walking or riding a bike with an exception for inclement weather rides from carpool arrangements. K-6 the distance was about 5 blocks, 7-9 distance was about a mile, 10-11 was about 9 blocks (occasional rides w/friends w/cars), senior year about 3 blocks. K-11 town size was around 14k in southern KS, senior year was in a small town of about 2k in northern OK. Never rode a school bus except for special events like band trips, didn’t have my own car until late in my senior year.

Contrast to my children’s experience of never walking to school from our suburban neighborhood because the school was some distance away from the neighborhood and no sidewalks existed that would allow them to walk. There is something that is missed when children don’t walk to school.


34 posted on 09/14/2009 7:59:08 AM PDT by T-Bird45 (It feels like the seventies, and it shouldn't.)
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To: Vision

About the only thing government is really supposed to do is “protect the people”. But government has failed at that — possibly because government is so busy doing a gajillion other things.


35 posted on 09/14/2009 7:59:21 AM PDT by ClearCase_guy (Play the Race Card -- lose the game.)
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To: ClearCase_guy
In the early 80’s ALL children were eligible for busing to our rural Michigan school (K-12), even if they lived across the street. The school was on a busy rural highway. In fact, the school rule was that no one was allowed to cross the street during school time, not even at lunch. Yup, it was excessive, but it kept the school from being sued.
36 posted on 09/14/2009 7:59:34 AM PDT by FourPeas (Why does Professor Presbury's wolfhound, Roy, endeavour to bite him?)
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To: ClearCase_guy
About the only thing government is really supposed to do is “protect the people”. But government has failed at that — possibly because government is so busy doing a gajillion other things.

Yup.

37 posted on 09/14/2009 8:01:08 AM PDT by FourPeas (Why does Professor Presbury's wolfhound, Roy, endeavour to bite him?)
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To: Arec Barrwin
This is a direct result of the Carter Administration supporting a Supreme Court decision that the “homeless” and other degenerates could not be kept out of cities that provided government services for them.

Once again the left's compassion is paid for with the lives of innocent children, and the imposition of additional costs on society. Imagine how much less gasoline would be used each day if we didn't have to crank up millions of big yellow buses.

38 posted on 09/14/2009 8:01:45 AM PDT by Texas Jack
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To: Arec Barrwin

Parents should be responsible for getting their own kids
to school: Get rid of school buses. I took my kids to school from K to highschool.


39 posted on 09/14/2009 8:01:57 AM PDT by upcountryhorseman (An old fashioned conservative)
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To: swain_forkbeard

With nothing but a turnip sandwich for lunch...


40 posted on 09/14/2009 8:03:12 AM PDT by Haiku Guy (If You have a Right / To the Service I provide / I must be a Slave)
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To: netmilsmom

My kids ask to walk in good weather, but we live on a road with no shoulder, much less sidewalks.

I refuse to even let them ride their bikes on our road, much less walk early in the morning when it is still dark now.


41 posted on 09/14/2009 8:03:16 AM PDT by Abathar (Proudly posting without reading the article carefully since 2004)
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To: Jewbacca
She lives only a block and a half from school. Yet she walks by older children waiting with parents for buses to the same school.

Okay, so a parent waits with the child at the bus stop rather than just walking with them a block and a half? This really doesn't make any sense and sounds like an exaggeration, a hallmark of a poorly thought-out non-story.

42 posted on 09/14/2009 8:03:34 AM PDT by Stingray51
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To: Texas Jack
Imagine how much less gasoline would be used each day if we didn't have to crank up millions of big yellow buses.

But then how would we evacuate people when there is an impending disaster looming....oh wait....nevermind.

43 posted on 09/14/2009 8:03:40 AM PDT by dfwgator
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To: Arec Barrwin

This issue of safety of children in the U.S., has had me puzzled for some time now. Five years ago I moved to Moldova, a small very poor country in Eastern Europe that is about the size of Maryland. It was a part of the Soviet Union.
One of the things that I immediately noticed and thought was so nice is that the children walk to school with no fear of being bothered. When I first came it was kind of a shock to me to see even first graders walking to school alone. I asked some of my Moldovan friends about it and they say there is just not a problem with crimes like that here.
My wife and I were recently in Florida and stayed near an elementary school. She was shocked at the long lines of cars every day taking children to school. I told her it was just not safe otherwise.


44 posted on 09/14/2009 8:03:49 AM PDT by flash2368 (Scary Times)
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To: capt. norm
We used to fly to school:


45 posted on 09/14/2009 8:05:37 AM PDT by Jeff Chandler ("People are idiots." -Thomas A. Caswell)
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To: KosmicKitty

I totally agree with you.

If there actually was more crime today, it would mean that humans had genetically changed. Crime statistics come and go, depending about whether people are actually convicted of crimes.

I spent most of my young years walking to school. There were bullies, and I even had a knife brandished on me. There were no doubt sex predators just like there are today. But, do we really need to go to the extreme of not letting kids outside without supervision?

My elementary school had hundreds of bicycles, my kids have zero. And yes, the last bus stop is about 2 blocks away, within a hundred yards of school. Disgusts me, especially when I see that 30-40% of the kids are grossly obese.

Something is really messed up. But hey, at least the schools are actually pretty good, and my kids have very intense education starting at 1st grade.

This issue is about cable news scaring people to death, along with laws too lax for evil people living in our communities.


46 posted on 09/14/2009 8:06:51 AM PDT by Professional
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To: Arec Barrwin
About 115 children are kidnapped by strangers each year, according to federal statistics; 250,000 are injured in auto accidents.

115 out of 300 million is a speck.

Sure it's a tragedy that even one is kidnapped but what is all this paranoia about so low a number in a country this size? More MSM mind control?

47 posted on 09/14/2009 8:08:12 AM PDT by what's up
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To: what's up
The inevitable result of Big Brother on people's psyche's.

30 years ago, people had the luxury of saying "how could we have known?" when their child was abducted/raped/murdered.

They don't have that luxury, as hollow as it may actually be, anymore.

30 years ago, most folks lived in areas where they knew most of their neighbors, could easily recognize suspicious interlopers, and probably had faith that their local, state, and Federal government were honestly concerned about their safety.

Things have changed.

48 posted on 09/14/2009 8:08:37 AM PDT by Trailerpark Badass (Happiness is a choice!)
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To: what's up

I didn’t grow up in the USA, but my wife did and she is certain it is worse. She used to walk to school (the same school our children attend) with little difficulty.

Several decades later now, the children have been harassed (bricks were throw from a van) and we have been warned to not let our children walk alone for fear of attack.

I have had some “cat calls” with the kids (”JOOOOO” and various things in arabic), but no violence.


49 posted on 09/14/2009 8:09:28 AM PDT by Jewbacca (The residents of Iroquois territory may not determine whether Jews may live in Jerusalem.)
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To: gwilhelm56

Do you have children?


50 posted on 09/14/2009 8:09:43 AM PDT by WhyisaTexasgirlinPA (Kanye West hates white people)
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