The thinking report is what we're given as a "tool" to help the kids ... ahh... THINK, I guess.  I'm not really sure.  If done with sincerity and some degree of penitence, if necessary, a thinking report MAY well help bring someone to a clearer appreciation of their actions/feelings and how they may negatively affect both themselves and the community.  While the questions themselves are honest enough, we RARELY get anything more than whiney, mewing, little screechy cries for more this, more that,  more everything.  Pamper me, protect me, humor me, entertain me, feed/clothe/house me, respect me!! 

OK, maybe I will.  But you can't assault my co-workers or other youth.  You can't lie/cheat/steal... or refuse to get older even if you never grow up.  I know you aren't required to get a free education, sweat, do ANY REAL WORK, keep a civil tongue, and that's YOUR problem, kids, if you don't -- not mine.  A good Work Ethic sometimes takes losing a few jobs (etc) in order to grow and mature one, you know?  Granted, they are young, but if they DON'T THINK -- I can't help them.  So why ask them to?

One of my favorite thinking reports was written by a kid who wrote the single word "HATE" on each section of the report.  Hmmmm... let's think about that.  He's in the Big House now, where I would say he richly deserves to be.  

Here's another favorite:

annoyed anxious

Pissed off
where the hell is the slip and slide and snow cones
It's boring nothing to do
I hate this dorm
it's childish
we can't do anything
I thought we was supposed to have things planed for today

mad angry

I believe this dorm is bullshit boring

get a self referal

Gee... what could I add to make it any clearer?  What's wrong here, or, if you read it over a few times, does some of it sound kind of promising in a way?  At least he's not seeing his incarceration as Kiddy Club for Convicts -- and that IS good. Still, he LIKES going to Security, and often does, because... because... I guess it's more fun.   Oh, boy.  Imagine that.

 I couldn't imagine what any psychologist would make of it, though, and good thing  too -- they don't pay me to interpret this for meaning or my opinion of what  makes the kids tick.  Does ANYONE evaluate them for potentially serious mental conditions after reading stuff like this??  IF not, WHY not? 

I will NEVER forget one asking me: "This (TYC Giddings) is kind of like prison, isn't it?"  Yep.  IF we run it right.  The kids not so long ago pretty much knew the score -- they were more than locked up.  They had a SENTENCE and most had enough sense to realize it really came down to at least EXHIBITING prosocial behavior in order to get outta here ASAP.  Sure, some would "fake it to make it" as they used to say, but nowdays that seems to be the norm.  Can't lose your stage, YES?  That just BLOWS.

So here we are, at a crossroads.  Either the kids win, or, EVERYONE BESIDES THEM DOES.   Ante up!  Win some, lose some, children; such is the Tao of playing the game.  If you're locked up here for #@!!, society wants you here to listen and learn from people who are trained to model and promote real-life proactive values.  We fail  to do this with the kids and EVERYNE LOSES.  That includes anyone reading or writing this, and everyone who never will.  The stakes are very high now and this is no longer a game.   If/when anyone asks for my honest input on my thoughts and feelings about situations here I can guaren-damn-tee y'all I'll put some THINKING into it!  

Do a thinking report right now on your own, with the situation being that you've just read this post and ...