Is Lynn overreacting?
Friday, February 24, 2012
City and school officials in Lynn
say they plan to prosecute two freshman girls who fought each other at Cook Street Park and discipline at least 27 other children who watched and did nothing.
The fight became a media sensation and a major embarrassment for Lynn when an eight-and-half-minute video
of the incident was posted on a website devoted to girl-on-girl fights and later on YouTube. The video received heavy coverage on local TV stations, with most news outlets blurring the faces
of the participants so they wouldn’t be recognized.
Now the question is whether city officials are overreacting by meting out punishments, including criminal charges. The Lynn Item reports
students will be disciplined on Monday when they return to English High School after February vacation. The two girls who fought each other are expected to be charged with assault and battery and disorderly conduct.Lynn Mayor Judith Flanagan Kennedy told Emily Rooney
on Greater Boston
that the fight started when one girl called the other a name. Rooney noted playground fights are not that unusual and said it’s not even unusual for onlookers to gather round to watch. “That’s the way it happens in hockey games,” she said.
Kennedy agreed, but said what bothered her about this fight was how long it went on and how the onlookers encouraged the participants and even acted as referees. She also was concerned that no one called the police. “They did nothing about it,” she said. “I want them to learn about the consequences of apathy.” --BRUCE MOHL BEACON HILL
Gov. Deval Patrick
is considering using unspent snow removal money
to help close the deficit at the MBTA
. A guaranteed way to make it snow. A Boston Herald
what it calls Patrick’s “sanctimony” on MBTA
obtains Attorney General Martha Coakley’s statement of her case against “Friend of Sal” Richard Vitale
, which exposes
the underbelly of Beacon Hill.
A judge has vacated 11 promotions
handed down under former state probation commissioner John O’Brien
, the first legal move to undo personnel decisions under his patronage-fueled reign.
The state retirement board has suspended
jailed Beacon Hill lobbyist Richard McDonough
’s $31,000 a year pension
for a no-show job with a special needs education collaborative.CASINOS Greater Boston takes the pulse of East Boston residents
on whether they want a casino
in their midst. While most think it’s a fait accompli
, there’s a small pocket of resistance building.MUNICIPAL MATTERS
The Globe reports
on a letter sent last week by the state inspector general to Boston officials telling them to seek more compensation from the Boston Red Sox
for the team’s use of streets adjacent to Fenway Park on game days and for air rights they were granted to construct the “Monster Seats” above the left field wall along Lansdowne Street. News of the letter from IG Greg Sullivan was first reported
on Tuesday by CommonWealth.
Boston City Councilor Sal LaMattina
wants to ban satellite dishes from building facades
The Brockton Water Department
, which has had billing problems and other issues, is shutting off service to four or five houses and businesses a day
because the occupants are failing to register for new meter installations.
The Cambridge Chronicle calls out
everyone involved in the city’s inability to pick a ceremonial mayor. (Councilors finally did select a mayor this week.)NATIONAL POLITICS/WASHINGTON
US Rep. William Keating
is introducing legislation requiring drug manufacturers to make prescription narcotic pills crush-resistant
to reduce abuse by addicts who snort or inject them.ELECTION 2012
In the National Review
, Steve Baldwin
and Deroy Murdock pick apart Mitt Romney’s anti-immigration stances
. The Herald previews
Gov. Deval Patrick’s role as an anti-Romney attack dog. The New York Times
looks at the political lessons
stemming from Romney’s mother’s failed Senate run.
Financial author Rick Newman
, writing in U.S. News & World Report
says there are three problems with Romney’s tax plan
: It would worsen the national debt; trigger larger spending cuts; and it favors the rich. Other than that... The Atlantic calls
Romney’s plan “a mathematical disaster.” Paul Krugman accuses
Romney of being a closet Keynesian. The Devil, you say
, Rick Santorum.
Meanwhile, Karen Santorum says her husband’s candidacy is “God’s will.” The Daily Beast’s David Frum
on why the birth control debate stings.
A new Obama
campaign ad swipes
at the entire GOP field in Michigan.
Democrats are crying foul
over Sen. Scott Brown
to be following in Ted Kennedy
’s footsteps in the battle over mandated insurance coverage for birth control. Warren and Brown trade barbs
over whether Hollywood
or Palm Beach
campaign donors most closely share middle-class Bay State values. Lowell Sun
columnist Peter Lucas argues
that Joe Kennedy III’s
run for the US House will suck up all the attention this election year, making it difficult for Elizabeth Warren
to make inroads in her Senate race against incumbent Scott Brown.BUSINESS/ECONOMY
The mail processing facility in Wareham will close and its operations will move to Providence
. It is one of more than 200 facilities that will be closed or consolidated around the country, according to the Postal Service
More Americans have college degrees than ever before.Governing asks
why the nation’s infrastructure
resembles a Third World country’s.Fannie Mae
wants Bank of America
to buy back bad mortgages, so the bank is retaliating
by not selling anything to Fannie. EDUCATIONBoston University will form a task force
to examine the culture of the school’s hockey team after a second player was arrested on sexual assault charges
. “These charges have raised a flag that there’s something here that’s not acceptable in a university,’’ BU president Robert Brown
told the Globe. Yesterday’s Download suggested
that, as with previous cases of Boston area athletes exhibiting abusive behavior toward women, it may have been the sharp words of a female newspaper columnist that raised a flag and prompted action.ENERGY/ENVIRONMENT
Boston Mayor Thomas Menino
is withdrawing his proposal to build a 400-foot wind turbine on Moon Island
, which the city owns but is located in Quincy
, because of opposition from residents in the Squantum
Warming waves: Even the right whales have come back to Cape waters earlier than normal this year
. They usually start appearing in the spring.
The Wall Street Journal says
energy firms drastically over-reported stimulus-related job creation figures. CRIMINAL JUSTICE
New statistics indicate the nation’s prison population fell in 2010
for the first time in nearly four decades. The cause was a decline in state prison admissions, Governing reports
. For a broader look at what’s happening, see CommonWealth’s report
Representatives of the Mayan
community in New Bedford
met with police to talk about increasing attacks at night targeted against Mayans
, many of which go unreported for fear of deportation.
A rash of drunk driving incidents
in the Berkshires prompts The Berkshire Eagle
to call for prosecuting those drivers to the full extent of the law.
An argument over some Red Sox tickets
prompted a Salem Hospital psychiatrist and his estranged wife to get into a fight. The psychiatrist is facing charges of rape and assault and battery, the Lynn Item reports