Friday, March 26, 2010

Oops, This was Not A Good Idea

The playground pictured to the right is in a New York City's Bedford-Stuyvesant section in a public housing project. The jungle gym features bars and a door with a bright orange jail motif. It even says JAIL directly over the door. Now I want to know who thought it was a good idea to have kids playing in jail before they even had a chance to commit any crimes. This is a minority neighborhood and as you can imagine residents were upset. One lady even says that several times she painted over the Jail sign only to have it repainted by city workers repeatedly over a period of 8 years. It wasn't until a news article pointing out the inappropriateness of the children's playground that the city agreed to take it down.
I wanted to know if you all know of any other inappropriate things like this that were meant for children to play with? Tell me what you've got!

-Doc

11 comments:

3 Men and a Lady said...

I don't really see what the big deal is. We played cops & robbers and similar games when I was a kid and you HAD to have a jail. Sounds like they've got a chip on their shoulder to me.

Dianne said...

3 men/lady - unfortunately in this neighborhood (which I know well) if your kids play cops and robbers there is a good chance a cop will come along and shoot them
parents must take toy guns, even water guns, away from their kids since there is so much gang and police activity that it isn't safe

so in light of that it's pretty absurd for the city that doesn't protect these kids to then build a play jail

sad but true

doc - I once went to a kid's party where they had these giant velcro figures with all sorts of costumes that the kids could use to dress the figures
it started out with the girls having a great time but then one little boy would pull off all the clothes and start screaming 'naked titties' - the figures were just flat cardboard but this kid was making a few parents nervous

3 Men and a Lady said...

Dianne- That's awful. Since that's the case, then a play "house" would have been a better choice then. I'm pretty sheltered over here in the cornfields so it wouldn't be an issue in these parts. Those poor kids, I guess I had no idea.

The Mountain Cat said...

I heard in Beverly Hills the children play in a jungle gym shaped like Spago. Now that's offensive!

Doc said...

Mrs. D - Dianne is right... This neighborhood is nto a great place. Bed-Sty is so bad that Billy Joel even wrote it into his song "You May Be Right" as if walking through there alone was as dangerous as being in a combat zone, drinking and driving or riding a motocycle in pouring rain.

Dianne - I just love pointing out dumb stuff like this.... but that kid yelling naked tities is just plain scary.

Mt.Cat - Mini Rodeo drive playsets

Karen said...

People are just so sensitive. We played jail as kids. There was a part of our basement that served at the cell. There are bigger things to worry about.

Disaster Chick said...

I think if they would have taken down the "Jail" sign and just painted it an entire contrasting color there wouldn't have been any issue.

Orange is a good color for playground equipment because the kids should see it before running into it. I guess prison uniforms are orange, but so are DOT workers.

It is a nice playground set, but the piece with "jail" should be replaced.

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

I see the point there- in certain neighborhooods, this would touch a raw nerve, especially if the children playing there have had direct contact with relatives in jail. it can be a tough one!

Christine said...

Just another case of the bureaucrats not thinking things through rather than trying to make them feel more comfortable when they finally get there.

Or I hope anyway.

Chandra said...

I have no opinion on this subject whatsoever. I can see both sides really.
I played cops & robbers, school, nurse & doctors you name it as a child so I can see where it would be no big deal to someone like me who grew up in a small town...on the other hand IF this neighborhood is as bad as it would seem then the city should have known better then to put something so offensive up for children to play on, they get enough of that in their real lives.

Christine said...

I think it's ridiculous that they would choose to design a public park in this way. Why such low expectations of the children? Like they can really relate to it or that's what they know?
I'm sorry, but a fake jail isn't really appropriate, how about a castle or pirate ship or something imaginative? That's my humble opinion.
The only inappropriate toys my kids ever got were the noisy ones. Like musical and beeping shit. That stuff was so unnecessary!