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The little boy part 1 by thadeusz by thadeusz
All the events described in this story, taken separately, have been observed in the USA. It is possible that they have never been observed simultaneously and never lived simultaneously by one same person. Nevertheless, this might be a good opportunity for the reader to think about the legitimacy of a system making these events possible.
When Johnny Merion was small, he was a very kind boy. He was smart and polite. Sadly enough, his parents were rich : his father was constantly away, working hard and making more money, but his mother stayed home and spoiled him. Johnny had everything money could buy : toys, a phone when he was 5, a recent computer, very elegant and expensive but well chosen clothes. He also had a very nice and very well decorated room, all for himself. Johnny had no brother or sister and despite the spoiling, he remained a good kid.
That changed a lot when he reached the age of 10. He stopped studying. He also stopped getting his usual haircuts and he chose very unelegant clothes with flashy colours. He tried to wear his clothes, even new ones, as if he was in rags. He decided that he would look better with hairs covering his ears and partly his eyes. He let his hair grow to such an extent that he could comb his hair in order to form a sort of dome covering his eyes, his ears and his neck. He spent lots of time combing his hair as if he wanted to hide behind it. He also attached earrings to his ears, two on the left side and one on the right, plus a ring attached to his nose. In fact Johnny looked like a shy teenager who was trying to hide and to protect his intimacy behind his hair, as if he did not want to see or hear the outside world. He was no longer smiling, but always ready to give orders to the servants who stayed in his parents' house, and especially to the maid who was attached to his own service, like his father's man servant. Johnny knew that he would also have a personal man servant when he would reach the wonderful age of 18 and was impatient to get rid of his maid ! But in fact Johnny had a serious problem !
His parents were in despair, especially when they compared his appearance to that of other kids of his age. They did not know what they could do when they received his reports from the school master, with all the negative comments from the teachers. The parents tried to make Johnny work, dress properly and go to the hairdresser. They did everything they could, but they failed. So his mother convinced Johnny's father to pay so that she could give her son more of what he wanted and allow him to do what he wanted, in order to avoid rushing things with the poor boy. That of course did not help. In fact Johnny needed a solid discipline and maybe a good spanking, but that was not what his mother had in mind and his father was too busy making money to help his son. As a consequence, Johnny's parents tolerated everything, even his long hair covering his face and his ears, even his ear and nose rings.
When this story starts, Johnny was 15 years and 7 months old but looked older. His father had decided to organize a week long vacation for the three of them in order to reestablish the contact with his son, but at the last minute Johnny invented a "good” reason to stay home : he claimed that he had to work with a friend for school in order to have better results. He succeeded to convince his mother, who in turn convinced her husband, Johnny's father, that it was not necessary to get a special "boy sitter” for him : the usual servant would be enough and would take care of his food and clothing, as they usually did. Johnny's father was angry and decided to let the boy have his experience. So Johnny was left alone, with the servants : his mother always did what he wanted, and his father always did what his wife wanted.
But they also left something behind them, Johnny's mother car : a small and very fast ferrari.
Johnny thought it might be great to try to drive the ferrari along the block where they lived. He did not have the permission to do so, but he knew where his mother kept her key, so he took it. He had already driven a car on the ways of his parents' countryside property, but never on real streets. In any case, he was too young and had no driving licence. While driving he was happy and forgot all prudence : he started speeding, which with a ferrari is not exceptional, except that it was forbidden. Two cops in a patrol car saw this and made signs to stop him. At that moment Johnny made his first mistake : he saw the cops and started to go faster trying to get rid of them. But the cops were faster and forced him to stop the ferrari. The cops wanted to arrest the boy, but he tried to resist arrest and said that his rich father would destroy their career if they did not let him go. That did not help him, on the contrary : he was finally booked and put in a cell with other guys awaiting trial.
Johnny knew he had a right : give one phone call. He called his father's cellphone, knowing his father would be angry but would get him out of jail. Unluckily for him, his father did not answer the phone call and that left Johnny alone to face his fate.
Johnny spent a full night in his cell, with drunkards and pickpockets. The next morning, he felt really annoyed because he did not have the possibility to comb what he considered as his major ornament : his "beautiful” hair, nor the possibility to wash and get his usual breakfast. He had to be satisfied with what the police gave him in the morning.
Later that day, Johnny was brought to juvenile justice and charged of several counts : driving a stolen car, without licence, speeding and threatening the police inspectors during the arrest. He wanted to explain his case to the Judge, but the Judge told him to keep quiet : his lawyer would speak for him. The judge then asked him if he had enough money to pay for a lawyer and Johnny, who had nothing in his pockets, answered that he had no money but said "My father is very rich and he will pay for a good lawyer”. But the poor boy had no way to prove his identity : he had left home with empty pockets. The judge told him that the trial was "now and not later”, so the court appointed a lawyer who pleaded guilty to all counts as charged and simply asked for the mercy of the court in order "to save this lost young man”. The Judge concluded that he was not sending Johnny to prison, as sign of mercy, but to boot camp for a period of 3 month for each of the counts. The Judge then added "Considering the type of clothes you wear and the disgusting state of your uncombed long hair, this court considers that you need time to learn how to behave like a real man. For your own good, this court decides that the four sentences will be served consecutively and not simultaneously, without the possibility of parole in Pearow juvenile boot camp”. The Judge added more comments to show his utter disgust of Johnny's long hair and of his flashy clothes. Johnny did not know what a juvenile boot camp was and asked the lawyer appointed to represent him, but this lawyer was already gone.
Immediately after the sentence had been passed, a guard got hold of Johnny, provided him with shackles linking his hands and feet, and then pushed the boy out of the courtroom and locked him into a small cell next to the courtroom. Johnny did not understand why the guard was doing that and asked him for explanations. The guard told him that he had been sentenced to spend some time in a juvenile boot camp.
"But what is that, a juvenile boot camp ?” asked Johnny.
"A kind of prison where bad boys like you are reeducated. And you will spend 12 months there” replied the guard.
Before closing the door, the guard told the 15 year old boy that he could consider he was lucky : this was the day when the boot camp van was coming, so he would be transported there immediately and would not have to wait during additional days in shackles, in this small cell. He could thus start immediately to serve his sentence, without additional days in the courtroom cell.
What Johnny did not know, and what the guard did not tell him, was the fact that "Pearow juvenile boot camp” was a private company, making lots of money because the Correction department was paying a certain amount per day for each boy sent there, but also by using the boys as unpaid workers in compensation for their reeducation. Johnny had thus been sentenced to 12 months in a boot camp, where the boot camp authorities had the right to transform his reeducation into hard labor !
We left Johnny alone in his cell : he was completely stunned and unable to realize what was exactly happening to him. He kept quiet in his cell, trying to place his hair as nicely as usual. But he failed because his hands could not reach his head ! At that moment, Johnny started to cry : not because he had been sentenced to one year in boot camp, not because he was chained, not because he was confined to a small cell without food, but because he had the impression that his hair was not in the correct position and that this would give a bad opinion of him.
After a certain time during which Johnny was left crying with nobody able to see or hear him while he was sitting on his cell floor, the guard came back and told Johnny to stand up : "Stand up boy, stop crying and behave like a man. You are now going to be transported to your place of detention, sorry of re-education”. The guard, who was after all a kind person, helped Johnny to stand up and to walk, which was painful because of the shackles. The guard lead Johnny to another room where 8 other boys were waiting. All of the other ones had short hair, decent but cheap clothes, and all of them were shackled like Johnny was. Johnny was the youngest of all of them. The 9 boys were then lead to a door leading to very small courtyard where a van was waiting. The van had no windows, light was coming inside through a small window placed in the roof, out of reach for people placed inside. The inside of the van was subdivided in ten little cells which did not touch one another, ten little cages, with iron partitions about 6 feet high, there were bars completing the cage, up to the top of the van. The cells front were made in a similar way, with the full iron part serving as door. As a result a boy placed inside could not easily see a person placed outside or in another cage, but he could speak to them which released some of the pressure these young detainees felt mounting because of the unknown place they were taken to. On the van side one could read "Correction department” in big letters and in small letters "detainees transportation van”. The boys were told to enter the van one by one and an armed guard checked that this happened as foreseen. Another guard lead each boy to a little cage made of thick bars and then locked him in. There were 10 cages for 9 boys, so each one could be locked in one independent cage. When Johnny, still stunned, entered the cage assigned to him, he realized that he could either sit on the ground folding his legs or stand up without moving, but nothing else. Both positions were uncomfortable because of the shackles. He was thirsty and asked for water but he was told that this was neither the moment nor the place : the 9 boys were no longer free men but County Detainees. Johnny also needed to go to the toilet : he had forgotten to do that while waiting in his small cell, but he was told "You are now in your cage, and the door is locked : you will have to wait until you are inside the boot camp”. Johnny remained seated in his cage in silence. Stunned. In something like a state of shock.
As soon as the 9 boys were each in a little locked cage, the guard left the inside of the van : his presence was no longer necessary. The outside door of the van was also locked and the van started to move toward Pearow juvenile boot camp.
At the beginning of the trip, Johnny was still stunned : he was sitting on the floor of his cage, crying. The other boys looked at him, his rich and inelegant clothes and his very long hair. They said that he was a sissy and made all kind of comments about Johnny. Since the little boy did not react, the other boys turned their attention towards something else : what criminal activity had each of them done and what should they expect from the boot camp. Johnny soon started to listen to the other boys. Some said they were really sorry, they regretted what they had done and they hoped boot camp discipline would not be too hard. Others described with pride what had brought them in front of the juvenile Judge : they obviously regretted nothing and were even proud of becoming soon "convicts” to use their terminology. Two boys even said that it was not their first trip towards "Pearow juvenile boot camp”: they had been there before and for that reason, they would be "rulers” of the other ones in the boot camp. They began to describe the life there, the harsh discipline and Johnny shivered in his cage. During this trip, the little boy finally understood that he was sentenced to one year of boot camp with older boys, most of them being hard core criminals. He also realized that he was the only one to have to serve such a long sentence : most of the other boys were sent there for one 3 months sentence, or for several 3 months sentences to be served simultaneously. Only two of the other 8 boys had been sent to Pearow camp for 6 months.
Suddenly the van came to a halt, a guard entered the inside part and all the boys were suddenly quiet, including those who said they had already been there. All except one : Johnny was no longer stunned, he had realized what was awaiting him and he shouted "According to my constitutional rights, I want to make an appeal of that stupid judgement, especially because I had a stupid lawyer”. And he kept repeating this until a guard told him to keep quiet : he would have the opportunity to say all that to the Head Guard of the camp. The "transportation guards” proceeded to let all the boys out of the van, one by one and still shackled. The boys were told to form a line and other guards, boot camp guards, took over. These guards checked several documents concerning the boys : name, sentence, etc. The boot camp guards were in uniform looking like a Marine utility uniform.
The boys discovered that they were in a small courtyard, inside a compound closed by several fences of barbed wire. The fences were separated by a small space making it very difficult to go out, except through one of the gates : the one the van came in, and another gate at the other end of the courtyard. The boys were told to walk straight ahead and left this small courtyard through the other gate, which was automatically locked as soon as the last of the 9 boys and their new guards had passed through it. The boys were now in a narrow passage where it was impossible to walk otherwise than one behind the other, in line. At that moment an exit towards the inside of the camp - or shall we say the prison - was opened and the boys were told to enter. They immediately arrived to a room where a guard checked again who was who. The guard called the two boys who had said they would be "rulers” because they had already been there and knew the rules.
The guard told them : "You have already been here. You know the music. Does each of you still remember his number ?”
And both boys, despite the self-assurance they had shown in the van, adopted a submissive attitude and said "Sir Yes Sir”.
So, still shackled, they were lead through another door to a special section of the camp because they had to serve their time there, in a special section for "jailbirds and previous offenders”.
The guards told the 7 remaining boys that if they did not behave well after boot camp, they would have to come back and serve their time doing hard labor and in shackles. After that they freed the boys from their shackles and a sort of chief guard said that they were now starting the "intake process”.
The guards fixed on each boy's neck a solid dog collar. The chief guard said : "Each of these dog collars has a label on which there are two indications : your name and your number. The two jailbirds who were with you have already gotten their old dog collar back ! The number I mentioned is important : from now on you will be only referred to by your number, so try to remember it perfectly and immediately. Moreover there is an electronic chip in your collar, this chip tells us exactly where you are, so do not try to escape, you would make the situation worse for you.” The guard then told each boy what his number was since the boys could see their own dog collar. Johnny heard that his number was 205.536 and the guard came back to him saying "You, long haired boy, remember who you are from now on : 205.536 and nothing else. Did you hear me despite your long hair covering your ears ?”
Johnny replied "Yes, but I won't stay”.
The guard snapped "First cadet 205.536, you don't speak that way : only ‘Sir Yes Sir' or ‘Sir No Sir', second you are going to stay here as long as needed to reeducate you. Understood ?”. But Johnny remained silent, so the guard came next to him and raised the truncheon he had in his hand asking : "205.536, understood ?”
"Yes” replied Johnny.
"Yes, whom, young f***er?”
Finally Johnny said "Yes, Sir”.
The Chief guard made a little speech, explaining the role of the dog collar to the new boys : "The dog collar you now wear serves several purposes. First it enables everybody to see immediately who you are and it enables the boot camp authorities to know immediately where you are, since the electronic chip is read by a detector any time you pass a door. But this dog collar is heavy, this is meant to remind you constantly that you are now, and for as long as you are here, a Pearow boot camp cadet. Your dog collar is also high, this is especially meant to force you to keep your head straight and try to learn to be a useful man in the future. Finally, your dog collar is very unpleasant to wear, the reason for this is that it reminds you that if you don't behave perfectly, as the guards will tell you to behave, your stay here will be extended and will become even more unpleasant than it already is.
The Chief guard went on explaining to the seven boys that they were now "phase one cadets”, that the rules of phase one were purposely very strict to make them lose their bad habits, but that they might "graduate” to phase two after 6 weeks if their behaviour was perfect. He went on explaining the rules of Pearlow juvenile boot camp. The boys learned that they would be called "cadets” and that the guards were called Drill Instructors, or DI, and that they had to address them using "Sir”. The head guard was the Chief DI and had to be called "Chief”. As phase one cadets, they would have to perform hard labor and that would last until they graduated to phase two. They had to keep quiet except if a question was asked : they had to reply by "Sir Yes Sir” or "Sir No Sir” or by saying what the guard requested, but always using the word "Sir” before and after. The boys were not allowed to speak with one another, except when explicitly told to do so. They also learned that whenever they would have to move, they had to do it "on the double”, except if explicitly told to do otherwise. They had to form a line when going to eat, get whatever food there was in a mess tin, get a spoon (forks and knife were not allowed) from a counter and a tin beaker of water; they then had to move to a designated table and stand waiting there till they were explicitly told to sit and eat. They were finally told that they would soon receive a uniform and that they had to keep that uniform perfectly clean and ironed, and their boots perfectly shining. There were other rules, but most of the boys looked frightened and did not remember what they were told, except for Johnny who was certain his father's money would very soon buy him a "way out”.
The boys were then lead to a room labeled "Barber”. They were very silent and all seemed to expect what would happen … except for Johnny. The boys entered the room in line and waited alongside a wall. There was a barber chair and a barber. This barber, also in Marine uniform, looked at the boys and told Johnny : "You are going to require much more time, we are going to let the other cadets go first. You don't want to delay them, do you ?”
Johnny did not reply and a DI came next to him and said : "205.536, did you hear the question or is your hair completely blocking your ears. Reply now !”
"Well I am not concerned : I will make an appeal so I have nothing to do with the barber”
"205.536, you will do nothing of the sort. The DI barber has told you you are going to wait till all the others have been taken care of. Did you hear that ?”
"Well yes, but …”
The DI interrupted him : "This is not a proper answer. Did you hear what the DI barber told you ? Yes or no ?”
"That is not how you were told to answer. Did you hear that ?”
"You must say ‘Sir Yes Sir'. This rebellious behavior will be reported to the Chief DI. Did you hear that ?” shouted the DI ?
Johnny felt he had been going far enough and said "Sir Yes Sir”
The first cadet was already sitting on the barber's chair. The DI took hold of Johnny's head and forced him to look at the transformation the other boy was undergoing. The barber took his clippers, got hold of the first cadet's head, pushed it downward and shaved the boy completely. This lasted less than two minutes. When he was finished the cadet was told to raise and join the back of the line. Johnny was horrified : he could see that what was previously a head with rather short hair was now a completely shorn head. The next cadet went without a word to the barber's chair and the same occurred again, with Johnny forced to look at the whole process. It was rather rapid since the barber was good and the boys did not have lots of hair on their head. This process lasted until the last of the 6 remaining cadets had gone through the shaving process, coming out with a completely shorn head. Some of them tried to touch their head to feel what was left but the DI immediately spotted that move and shouted :
"Keep your arms alongside your body and don't move”.
When everything was done for all the new cadets, except for Johnny, a DI told them :
"Now we move to the next step, on the double” and all the cadets left, leaving Johnny with the DI who held his head and with the DI barber. This one said kindly : "It's your turn now, and we will need more time”.
Johnny started to yell that it was unfair : he was going to get an appeal and his father would pay for a good lawyer. The DI who held his head told him to stop this story : there was no possible appeal for juveniles sentenced by a juvenile Judge. And then he pushed Johnny towards the barber's chair. But Johnny started to shout that did not want that, that it was unfair. He started to resist and fight. What could a boy aged 15, even if was in a rage, do against a DI who was an ex US Marine ? Nothing. Anyway, the DI tried to drag Johnny to the barber's chair, but Johnny did all he could to hold other objects and stop the DI efforts. In order to avoid hurting physically Johnny, the DI stopped to try to reason Johnny and called two of his colleagues (also ex-Marines). Together they put the shackles back on Johnny and carried him to the barber's chair. There, one DI held his feet, the other ones held his hands and the DI barber held Johnny's head in the good position.
The barber took his clippers and put them on. The noise made Johnny try to shrink and avoid the metal, but he was well held by the DIs. The barber told Johnny that shaving him would take more time if he tried to be difficult, but Johnny did not listen and continued his movements. So the barber decided to take his pleasure with this haircut. He first shaved a path through the center of Johnny's head, from front to back. Johnny felt the cold blade on his skin as if it had been a knife cutting him into parts. Then the barber created a path on the left of the head. Later a path which crossed the first ones. The barber went on in this unusual way, getting Johnny rid of chunk of hair after chunk of hair, not necessarily closed to one another in the beginning. Losing his long hair was already a punishment for Johnny, but having this slow torture was too much for him and he started to cry once more. Finally, this boy of 15 could not resist to be crucified in this way any longer. He accepted what he could no longer avoid and let the barber finish his job. At that moment his body betrayed him : it was a long time since he needed to go to the toilet, without having the possibility to ask for it, and now that he was completely mastered, as he was forced to let his body accept the dreadful haircut, he could no longer control his body anymore and Johnny realized, to his great shame, that he was watering his trousers. The DI taking care of him noticed this weakness moment and told the barber to stop playing and finish properly but fastly what had to be done. The DI barber finished rapidly, leaving Johnny's head shorn but not really bald. He then took care of the earrings and of the nose ring, simply by cutting them with a small pair of pliers. Johnny wanted to know what would happen with his precious golden rings, but felt too weak to object anymore.
When everything was finished, Johnny was told to stand up, which he did without hesitation. He wanted to see what he looked like but could not do it : there was no mirror for the new cadets. He tried to touch his head with his hand but was told by "his” DI to keep his hands alongside his body, and Johnny strangely enough obeyed that order without any comment. He had of course seen and felt that he did no longer have hair in front of his face, that he could no longer hide behind his mane and that this same mane was no longer covering his ears. His DI asked him if he was ready to go further and obey now, without shackles, and Johnny said that he was ready and he said it in the proper way. The DIs took the shackles away and "his” DI, called DI Robert by all the other DIs but not by the cadets, took him to the next step of the intake journey ! From here on we are also going to call this DI by his first name, for the sake of simplicity !
So DI Robert took the freshly shorn Johnny to another room where he told him to take off all his clothes. The other new cadets had already left, so DI Robert asked a colleague to be present with him. Johnny, not knowing anymore what to say or do, decided he better obeyed this time and ask again for an appeal later. When Johnny was naked, he was submitted to a bodily search: Pearow juvenile boot camp did not want to take any risk. Cadets were told that they were not allowed to take inside any weapon, drug, phone or money. But they might have tried ! Johnny passed the body search: he was much too pure in his immaturity to have concealed anything. Johnny was then sent in a small cage, full of electronic equipment : he did not know that this equipment was taking pictures of the newly shorn Johnny and also taking all his measurements for future use.
Johnny was then taken to the shower room and told to take a shower, which pleased Johnny since he really felt dirty. The boy started to shower but suddenly shouted :
"The water is cold”
DI Robert replied "This is just what a cadet deserves. This is for your own good”
The other DI told Johnny : "Don't forget to spend at least ten minutes washing your long hair”
Johnny replied that he had no hair anymore, but the DI told him to do as if he still had his big mane just in order to realize how cold the water could be.
But DI Robert corrected this bad joke by saying "No need for that, and in any case, you are not allowed to touch your head with your hand as long as you are not in uniform”
After this, Johnny was sent to a special cabin where the DIs sprayed him with a special disinfectant. He was still naked, without shoes, but ready for the last step of this painful intake journey.
The DIs took Johnny to a big room full of clothes where the cadets who had arrived with him were still waiting for him, all of them were in the position of attention. A special "clothing DI” gave Johnny the pieces of his uniform and he was told to put them on immediately. He received the necessary underwear, a T-shirt, a pair of trousers, a vest: all these pieces of uniform looked alike the DI's uniform except that they were in red cloth and that there was in the back and also above the place where you would expect a breast pocket a large piece of white cloth, marked with Johnny's number : 205.536. On top of this he received a military shaped cap, also red, red socks and a pair of heavy and solid black boots. He put all this on, not realizing how they could have his exact measurements and not thinking about the small cabin full of electronic equipment. DI Robert told him then that his uniform was clean and well ironed, he thus had to keep it exactly like that. His boots were shining and DI Robert told Johnny that they had to remain his only miror. Johnny considered that his boots were rather heavy and thus uncomfortable, but he did not dare say it. He asked for his old clothes and rings, but was told that they would be destroyed as "filthy”.
The seven new cadets were now reunited and were brought, in turns, in front of a mirror. They were told that it was a great favor and that they would not see their own image before the day of their release. When it was Johnny's turn to look, he was shocked by what he saw : a very ordinary teenager, with an open face, ready to look and listen, not hiding behind any package of hair, but with a shorn head. He did no longer look like a shy teenager hiding behind his hair, but he did neither look assertive, in fact he looked the way he was : very anxious about this new world he wanted to escape as soon as possible. He looked like a real prisoner! The only thing Johnny could see in the mirror was a boy he did not recognize, despite the fact that this boy was his own image, a boy who was dressed in a pseudo army looking uniform, red, with his number on it. And that was it, Johnny had to leave the mirror until "his father could solve the problem” or … for a full year !