Program pays gang members to finish high school and go to college

WBZ reports on the Boston Uncornered program.

We’re not rewarding them for their negative behavior. What we’re saying is you’ve made mistakes that have hurt your whole community. If you want to do the right thing, we’re here for you.

And don't worry, Trumpies - the program is privately funded, just the way you like it.

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Comments

Some kids have parents who do this for them

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Many of these kids have never had real families or future options, so they go with what works for now. Which is crime.

Be great to see this work/succeed. Basic opportunity like this should not be a reward anyway. It should be equally distributed.

My kids won the lottery already

They were in the small percentage of kids born to educated parents of the dominant ethnic group - parents who waited until they had the maturity and stability necessary to provide a reasonable childhood and pay for them to go to school.

Gangbanging is dangerous, but not necessarily foolish if you lack opportunity and family. I think this program goes quite a ways toward making up for the birth lottery effect.

Ugh, not a "trumpie", think

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Ugh, not a "trumpie", think this program will most likely fail and glad that it's not publicly funded.

What an awful person I am.

Based on what?

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think this program will most likely fail

Based on what?

I'll give a suggestion

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There is a gut feeling that providing merely a financial incentive for people to do the right thing will ultimately fail when the financial incentive is removed. Theoretically, the "gang bangers" will go to school while the money is there, but will revert to the wrong path when the money isn't there.

It's an interesting experiment. This is the kind of pilot that would have to come from private money because without proof that it works, no government agency would do this. Of course, the project will be studied to see what works and what doesn't, and perhaps government programs could come from that.

Unlikely

There is a gut feeling that providing merely a financial incentive for people to do the right thing will ultimately fail when the financial incentive is removed. Theoretically, the "gang bangers" will go to school while the money is there, but will revert to the wrong path when the money isn't there.

My gut feeling is that when the gang members are separated from the rest of their gang and around people who want to make a legitimate life for themselves, they'll want the same.

People are a product of their surroundings.

it turns out

many of the men leaving prison have to be convinced they are capable of succeeding in the program by doing the work in school, getting their degree, and landing a job with their new skills, one step at a time. They continue to get support from the program after they've decided they think they can do it.

Other states have done more by educating felons in prison. College professors donate their time to teach classes in prison so convicts can complete their degrees before they come out. An NYC prison has a debate program which is really cool.

Whatever helps people with records establish a new life in civil society is a great thing for them and the community they live in.

Or maybe

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She once interned for Bill Clinton.

Or maybe she had an encounter with Anthony Wiener when she was in high school.

If you ask me

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I wouldn't want anyone I know who is a woman around any of those guys, or, in the case of Weiner (whose name I did misspell), wouldn't want to have contact with in any form. I'm just glad (or to be honest sad) that horrible sexual behavior is a bipartisan activity.

Question about “Trumpies”:

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Question about “Trumpies”:

Do you have a word for those of us who abhor the madman that is our President, but also disdain ultra-Liberal nonsense like this?

I grew up a poor minority in Boston. No one paid me to not gangbang.

Agreed

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I don't see the need to throw "Trumpies" into this article at all. Getting a little too progressive here for this moderate liberal.

"nonsense"

show your work: why you think it's ridiculous to help ex-con get skills and a job rather than return to the life they knew before? Is it because you assume they are black people? What if you knew it helped white people too. Would that change your mind?

Ask Adam your questions

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You'd be surprised to know that Republicans have been opposed to excessive government spending on social programs for decades. Remember the Social Security Act? Not exactly widely received by the Party of Lincoln back in the 1930s. Also, the Social Security Act predates the birth of President Trump.

It might be a good program. It might be crap. Suffice to say that a lot of Republicans who oppose Trump (think Jeff Flake and Ben Sasse) would not exactly be jumping at the chance to implement this program.

Yeah, the Trump thing is getting old. Thankfully Democrats across the nation are beginning to realize this and are running for things as opposed to running against anyone.

Thumbs up

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Thumbs up

Nope

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If you aren't as "progressive" and agree on all "progressive" causes, you're a mouth-breathing, nazi, racist, sexist Trump-lover. Those are the rules.

Nah

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How about this rule: if this is found to be highly effective, you eat crow? That's a rule a super Lefty like me and someone like you should be able to agree on. A reasonable person would wait for results rather than assume a position of cynicism with utter disregard without them.

Thumbs up

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Way the eff up.

Seriously, people, you say "aaah it won't work", don't offer any reasoning or facts...what term should you be addressed with that, in your view, is sufficiently respectful?

Help us out

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How would you define success here? Societal costs (tangible and intangible) per gang member go down? Societal costs to get each gang kid on the right track go down? Gang kids outcomes improve more than other kids per dollar spent? A few graduation stories? A single violent crime is avoided? A photo op with a kid on his first day back in school? Of course, this goes way beyond money but I think part of the reason we can’t win together is we can’t see eye-to-eye on just exactly what win is the right one to get next.

Dunno

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It's probably written into the study, though. So if you can find it, take a look and see what they're aiming to achieve.

"trumpies"??

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So if you were to have a logical question about funding of a program like this - you are automatically labeled a "trumpie" now?

Roger that....

Why?

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Why should it be? You don't think it might be cheaper and more valuable to incentivize becoming a productive citizen rather than ignoring the issues? It costs $55,000 a year to house someone in a state prison. You don't think this might be smarter+cheaper? Get real.

Or, bear with me here, we

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Or, bear with me here, we could expect people to act like civilized people should. We should expect good behavior, not be so surprised by it we throw money at it.

I don't understand why this behavior (gang) is excused.

I have never met anyone in my life that hasn't had bad fortune or made poor decisions. It's called life and most of us learn and move on and become productive citizens.

By continuing to make excuses for poor behavior, you end up encouraging it I'm afraid.

Actually

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This provides incentive for them not to engage in undesirable behavior. Apparently they didn't respond to the incentives not to, as you've illustrated above. It'd be nice if everyone fit into that box but this is likely a worthwhile investment.

Because

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If this is something you feel strongly about donating money to inner-city high school dropouts, donate your money to the cause and create a program like this. I'll use my money to educate my own children.

taxes

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This insular viewpoint is exactly the problem. Just because you choose to ignore the issue or expect other people to fix it does not mean that you arent paying for it, or that your kids will not be paying for it.

Your taxes are paying that $55,000 a year housing cost for prisoners, and your taxes are paying for the law enforcement that would have to deal with the criminals these programs are trying to prevent in the first place, so yes you are absolutely paying for it whether you like it or not.

Birth lottery

All children should just win the birth lottery if they want to have a college education and decent life, right?

Just do a better job picking their parents!

I'm aware

I'm aware of advantages I had and people with less power in society do not have.

An adult helped to expunge, not through the courts, a stupid teenage moving violation through a favor asked, aka corruption. The education I got--catholic, public and private-- I had because of privilege. I worked in a gap year at a high tech company because I knew somebody who knew a senior C-level executive who made a phone call for me and got me an interview. My first job interview after college graduation was via alumni network connection.

People like Gerrod Brown from Jamaica Plain and Brighton HS need more adults helping kids like him get breaks and a city willing to fight for his safety. We need a system that helps do that.

Students

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Can't they just go to free high school with the rest of the kids in the same classes?

Some are too old.

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Some are too old.

Some have learning disabilities.

Many are holding jobs while going to school.