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The Myth of the Boogey: Arresting a Mom for Unsupervised Play

Tammy Cooper is just like me; she lives on a quiet cul-de-sac and she lets her children ride their scooters along the neighborhood street. The only difference between this Mom and me is she was arrested for allowing her kids, ages six and nine, to play outside watching from “only a few feet away.”

Come over and join the conversation at BlogHer. Do you believe Tammy Cooper’s arrest was warranted?

Categories: motherhood Tammy Cooper The Boogey Man Unsupervised Play

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Darcie Cameron is a RYT 200 who believes Yoga is a gift that is accessible to everyone with proper modifications, a patient smile and just taking the time to breathe. One of the greatest presents you will ever unwrap is when you connect your mind, body and spirit in perfect sync with your own breath. Connect with Darcie on Facebook

23 replies

  1. Belle, all I can say is how ridiculous! Poor Tammy to live amongst such hypocrites. You’d think that if one of the neighbors had a problem with her not directly supervising the children, they would have spoken to her about it instead of calling the police. This just goes to prove that the “friendly neighbor” no longer exists. Nowadays, we have to live in fear of making too much noise, not supervising our children, disciplining our children, or raising our voices just a tad above what’s deemed normal. Any little thing will win you a trip to jail and sadly, they don’t take “Get out of jail” cards. I loved the many reasons you’ve cited in your post regarding the importance of children playing out of the “watchful” eye of parents. You have taught me much today, Ms. Belle! Thank you! 🙂

    1. You know when I first heard about this I kept thinking there has to be more to the story but the sad part is there isn’t…Here is a Mother who wants to give her children the freedom to play on their own. The worst part is she was sitting only a few feet away. I don’t know where the breakdown in community happened when neighbor can no longer talk to another neighbor if they have issues with her children’s free play. It is a sad state of affairs when the police are thrown into something so ridiculous!

  2. The town of LaPorte is only a few miles up the road from me. It’s been a big story here, and I’ve heard interviews with Tammy on the radio. Pretty clearly, it’s a case of an overly intrusive and nasty neighbor, combined with poor police judgment. In the end, there may be some good that comes of it. People are getting fed up with seeing their right to raise their children as they see fit. Sometimes, there are poor parents, but this wasn’t one of them.

    1. You are right sometimes there are cases when the police need to intervene but this certainly isn’t one of them. What happened to the individual right to raise your children on your own terms? I hope her nasty neighbor learns a lesson in judgement.

  3. This is a side effect of accepting any part of a Nanny state. Once you allow it to exist in one area of day to day living, it becomes pervasive [and invasive] in every other aspect of your life. Statism is a poor replacement for individual rights and acting freely in one’s own rational self-interest.

    1. I still can’t believe they arrested her for something as simple as the act of letting your children play outside. People should have the right to make their own choices without having their neighbor and police watching over their shoulders.

  4. Ugh! That is all I have to say.. UGH! I myself work in the media. I am a radio dj and since I’m not a News/Talk station, I speak more about Jason Aldean drunkenly canoodling a chick in CA with his wife back home. Honestly, I like it that way. The news is beyond negative, scary and overly dramatic these days. There is a HUGE difference between allowing our children to play unsupervised and neglect. I feel bad for this mom..she seems to be the “Kevin Bacon” of the “Footloose” town on this one. :/

    1. I love that description! She really is the “Kevin Bacon of the Footloose Town!” Sometimes the news is over the top and hyper focuses on everything. We need to take a step back and determine what is best for our own life and family.

  5. Ok, I’m a bit out of the loop here, being so far away etc, but, on the face of it, the story sounds rediculous and you wonder what the authorities are playing at. Over supervision makes kids more nervous, not less and in the long run, undermines their confidence

    1. It is ridiculous! It came down to one neighbor not liking another neighbor and trying to cause as much trouble as she possibly could for her…I believe the authorities made a horrible judgement call and turned this woman’s life upside down.

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