Last week, GOP state Rep. Bob Kingsbury explained that he believes there is a direct link between the growing inmate population at the Belknap County Jail and the state’s mandatory kindergarten program.
Today, Kingsbury sat down with The Huffington Post and provided details. ”In general,” the 86 year old Laconia lawmaker said, “the towns with a kindergarten have 400 percent more crime than other towns in the same county. In every county the towns and cities with kindergarten had more crime.”
In Kingsbury’s world, kindergarten is not the only factor that contributes to a higher crime rate — but he does not blame day care or preschool programs.
“Children go to kindergarten at the point of a gun,” Kingsbury said. “Children go to day care and it’s not the same; there is no point of a gun.” Kingsbury said he believes that teachers are partially to blame but the rise in crime is not the fault of teachers. Instead he blamed attorneys and the courts for what he called a lack of discipline and rules in schools and for prohibiting teachers from disciplining students as in previous decades.
GOP state Rep. Bob Kingsbury has the explanation for a purported rise in the crime: kindergarten. The Laconia lawmaker, who has been researching the local crime rate for 16 years, also points to declines in gun ownership and boxing as contributing factors. Seriously. The Laconia Daily Sun has the story.
Representative Bob Kingsbury said he’s been working on a theory since 1996, when he analyzed local crime rates and compared them to a list of communities that offered public kindergarten. Then, he told his colleagues, Laconia offered kindergarten and had the highest rates of crime. Meanwhile, surrounding towns, some of which didn’t offer kindergarten, had less crime.
“We’re taking children away from their mothers too soon,” Kingsbury concluded.
Kingsbury wrote to all of his then state representatives, informing them of his research. To his dismay, the state Legislature has since joined the remaining 49 states in mandating public kindergarten. “And we have more crime today,” he said.