14-year-old invades rural Massachusetts home, severely beats woman with shovel

And the victim’s husband says that cause of the attempted murder was a lack of “activity options.”

First let’s look at the story in the August 8 Daily Mail:

An award winning children’s illustrator is recovering after a 14-year-old boy entered her Massachusetts home and beat her round the head with a shovel.

Jane Dyer, who has illustrated children’s books including the ‘Cookies’ series was left with a blunt force injuries to her body and a wound to her head that required five surgical staples.

The teen allegedly entered Dyers’ Cummington home at around 5.30 p.m. late last month and attacked her, beating her while she was laying on the ground and calling for help.

Jane Dyer, an award-winning children’s book illustrator,
was attacked in her own Massachusetts home by a
14-year-old boy wielding a shovel

The youth, who ran away after the assault was apprehended by Cummington police 30 minutes later and was arraigned on charges of home invasion, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and assault to murder according to the Northwestern district attorney’s office.

The teenagers [sic], who cannot be named for legal reasons pleaded not guilty and was released on bail. [LA replies: This appears to be incorrect. He is being held on bail. See below.]

District Attorney David E. Sullivan said that he wished the 63-year-old illustrator a speedy recovery.

Dyer told police that she first saw the teenager standing at the bottom of her driveway holding the shovel earlier in the day and thought nothing of it.

However, the youth entered her home without her knowledge in the late afternoon and struck her in the back of the head with the shovel after she asked him to leave her house.

Dyer said that she could not think why he had attacked her, but did speculate that during the assault he seemed to believe that she was someone else.

Screaming for help, Dyer said that she pleaded with the boy to stop, telling him that she was a grandmother as she used her arms, legs, hands and feet to deflect the blows.

‘You’ll be in a lot more trouble if you don’t stop now,’ Dyer said she told him while she was being hit.

This is the second time that the Dyer household has been broken into by a suspect from a neighbouring foster care home.

‘We’re not waiting for a third,’ said Jane Dyer’s husband Tom Dyer.

[end of article]

The Mail does not explain what “not waiting for the third” means. Moving to a different town without a neighboring foster care home?

Also, the Mail article appears to be based on a story in the Daily Hampshire Gazette (though the Mail does not give credit, it never does, and I wonder how it gets away with that).

According to the Gazette’s article, the suspect is being held on bail, not released on bail.

Also, the Mail left out these further comments from Tom Dyer:

Dyer said he’s sensitive to the needs of at-risk [translation: black] youth who need supervision and services like foster care, but believes the rural location isn’t appropriate, and he would like to see it shut down.

“It’s unfair to the kids,” he said.

He said that there is little for the youth in the program to do in such a remote area on a dead-end road, and it may be that a lack of activity options contributed to the July attack.

A message left at the home that Tom Dyer identified as the location of the foster program Monday afternoon was not returned.

So the lack of “activity options” is what led the suspect to attempt to murder Jane Dyer. Unless you keep black youth constantly distracted, they revert to their default mode, which is to kill and maim.

Tom Dyer recognizes that there’s something “inappropriate” about bringing “at-risk” urban youth to a rural community where there don’t fit in. But he sees this only as unfair to the youth, not as dangerous to the residents. He can’t bring himself to say the self-evident, that “at-risk” youth are a risk to other people. Unless he did say it and the Gazette left it out. But, based on Dyer’s stereotypical liberal comment about the cause of the attack being a lack of activity options, I doubt very much that he did say such a politically incorrect and true thing.

- end of initial entry -

James P. writes:

When I was 14, I lived on a cul-de-sac in suburbia, with nothing other than a grocery store within walking distance. In those pre-internet days, I had a severe lack of “activity options” (especially in the summer in Phoenix, when it was too hot to go outside). I was often “at risk” of severe boredom, but managed to find ways to entertain myself. For some reason, it never occurred to me to break into the house of my elderly neighbors and beat them with a shovel …

LA replies:

A 63 year old in today’s world is not “elderly.” “Elderly” implies debility, lack of ability to engage in full physical activities. 63 is not even retirement age. What is this spreading use of “elderly” for people over 60, or even over 50? On one hand, people are more youthtful than ever and we’re told that 50 is the new 30. On the other hand, people over 60 (look at Jane Dyer’s photo again) are now routinely called elderly.

A certain phrase enters the popular consciousness, and then people just start repeating it.

James P. replies:
I didn’t mean that Jane Dyer was elderly. My neighbors when I was 14 were elderly—they were retired.

LA replies:

Right, sorry.

That’s where people constantly err. I had a pre-picture in my mind, and I incorrectly fit your comment into that picture.

Michael writes:

I bet my next paycheck, Dyer left her front door unlocked, even after seeing the kid in the driveway. In my experience, liberals and suburbanites love to leave their doors unlocked.

BD writes:

The one commenter on the “Daily Hampshire Gazette” story makes the valid point that if she had a gun nearby, she could have taken care of her problem with this “troubled youth.” A couple of nasty dogs would have helped too. But why would someone living in a peaceful rural area of Massachusetts need such protection? Oh yes, the nearby home for “at risk” youths.

Beth M. writes:

There has been a trend in recent years to try to move foster kids to rural areas to try to get them away from troubled neighborhoods and dysfunctional extended families, etc. The downside is that the kids lose all contact with ANYBODY who has ever been a positive influence on them (Sunday school teachers, elderly neighbors, etc.) A black child or teenager moved to a virtually all-white rural area is instantly marked as a “foster kid” and becomes the ultimate outsider. The local teens often work in the summers baling hay, etc., but for legal reasons, foster children are NOT allowed to do any sort of farm labor.

Obviously, both of the Dyers are lifelong lefties, but the husband actually does have a point that rural life is not helping these kids.

LA writes:

Despite Tom Dyer’s and other white liberals’ implicit recognition that in the absence of activity options, at-risk black youth will commit extremely violent crimes, that doesn’t lead them to recognize that at-risk black youth are … you know, extremely dangerous. It just leads them to re-emphasize society’s obligation to provide more and better activity options.

Jeanette V. writes:

I grew up in the ’50s in the suburbs. We had no activities for children. I read and played kick the can (yes I really did play that) with the neighborhood kids. In the summer I lived in rural British Columbia with no TV. I spent my days reading and playing field hockey.

My daughter grew up in a rural mountain town with no TV. She read and played fastball with the neighborhood kids.

For centuries children didn’t have activities planned for them, how did they ever survive?

LA replies:

I spent my entire childhood playing in the woods behind our house, playing catch and touch football on the street in front of our house, playing with my toy soldiers and bricks and erector set, and reading. I would pretend one of the soldiers was Batman and he would go leaping or swinging from one building to another or I would make a paper airplane with a string attached for him to hold onto and he would fly it like the Batplane. I had a model jet plane that I pretended was a space ship. A friend and I would build structures with my bricks that we pretended were Egyptian pyramids and put one of the soldiers inside and pretend he was a pharaoh’s mummy, then we would pretend to be archeologists and dig up the pharaoh. I had a toy submachine gun I liked a lot. That was about it.

Leonard K. writes:

Firstly, here I am, your spell checker: pharaoh, not pharoah (it’s not a typo, you misspelled it twice).

Lastly, we need strict shovel control laws.

LA replies:

You’re right, not a typo. I’ve fixed it (them).

Paul K. writes:

You wrote,

The Mail does not explain what “not waiting for the third” means. Moving to a different town without a neighboring foster care home?

A friend of mine who lives in the area told me the Dyers own another home in trendy Northampton, so perhaps they will relocate there and start locking their doors.

LA writes:

Just to underscore a point made by reader Michael, the Mail says:

Dyer told police that she first saw the teenager standing at the bottom of her driveway holding the shovel earlier in the day and thought nothing of it.

However, the youth entered her home without her knowledge in the late afternoon and struck her in the back of the head with the shovel after she asked him to leave her house.

She saw a black youth unknown to her standing at the bottom of her driveway holding a shovel. Even though her house had previously been broken into by a suspect from a neighboring foster care home, she thought nothing of this youth, who she had to know was probably also from a neighboring foster care home, standing at the bottom of her driveway holding a shovel. Evidently her doors were not locked and she did not lock her door after seeing the youth with the shovel. Later in the day the youth entered her unlocked house and, hitting her repeatedly on the head with the shovel as she lay helpless on the floor (the classic black rampaging mode), almost killed her.

White liberals lack any normal instinct of self-defense, especially when it comes to blacks; and if on a rare occasion such a normal instinct begins to intrude itself into their consciousness, they have trained themselves ruthlessly to suppress it. Look at the photo of Jane Dyer above. She could not possibly maintain that quintessential expression of liberal-elite self-esteem on her face if she ever allowed into her mind the odious thought that blacks might be dangerous.

LA writes:

Here is an illustration of the above point about how liberals suppress their own normal, rational reactions. I wrote at VFR in May 2009:

Not wanting to seem racist, woman allows herself to be held up and raped

It sounds like America itself, doesn’t it? Maybe we should replace the Statue of Liberty with a statue of this woman, who truly symbolizes what America now is.

The story comes from KGET:

The woman had just left the Babies R Us store when she noticed a man in a tattered military coat lurking in the parking lot, she told police. The woman told detectives she was worried because the man looked like a thug, but she didn’t want to seem racist.

So, not wanting to seem racist, the Bakersfield, California woman proceeded to her car, where the man held her up at gun point and threatened to kill her 11 month old daughter if she didn’t do what he told her. He had her to drive to an ATM where he stole $500 from her, then he had had her drive to a junior high school parking lot where he raped her in front of her child.

This white woman saw a person who she herself felt was dangerous, but she suppressed her awareness of danger because he was black. The MORE troublesome, MORE hostile, and MORE threatening nonwhites and non-Westerners are, the MORE whites conceal the truth from themselves, in order not to seem racist.

[end of excerpt from 2009 blog entry.]

Now let us consider this. Suppose the thuggish looking man in the parking lot was white and the woman felt he was threatening. The fear of being racist would NOT have pushed her to suppress her rational fear of him. According to her own account, it was specifically because he was black that she suppressed her normal instinct of fear.

How does this fit with Andrew McCarthy’s statement that we should never make “a priori conclusions about how individual persons ought to be treated in various situations”? In fact, liberals DO make a priori conclusions about how individual persons ought to be treated in various situations. If an individual is black, and dangerous looking, they suppress their fear of him, which they would not do if he were white.

LA writes:

I’ve made Jane Dyer’s “thought nothing of it” and the Bakersfield woman’s “not wanting to seem racist” into rules to be added to VFR’s list of behaviors to avoid if one wishes not to be harmed by blacks. Here they are:

10(u) If you live in a rural town and see a black youth from a neighboring foster care home for at-risk youth lingering in front of your house, do not “think nothing of it.” Lock your house, then call the police and ask them to check the youth out.

10(v) If you are about to approach your car in a quiet parking lot and see a thuggish looking black man lurking there and you are worried about him, do not, out of fear of seeming racist, continue to walk to your car. Wait for the man to leave, or ask store security to accompany you to your car.

William writes:

I believe Samuel Coleridge coined the expression “motive-hunting of motiveless malignity” in his description of Shakespeare’s evil character Iago in Othello. It seems that Mr. Tom Dyer is “motive-hunting” for “the motiveless malignity” that committed this crime.

LA replies:

Yes, possibly.

Except maybe it’s not motiveless. Maybe the youth sees whites, and particularly pretty white women, as his natural prey.

Jewel A. writes:

I grew up in foster homes. We were hoodlums and petty juvenile criminals, but we never ever committed this sort of crime. Our Catholic foster parents showed us the right end of a belt as often as needed. We also spent time in a Catholic orphanage. When we got out of line, we got punished. I wonder if today’s foster parents are even allowed to punish their keeps? I don’t think so. My brother worked in a Lutheran home for abused boys, and they used to accuse him of all kinds of crimes including rape and assault. Even when he was proven innocent, he couldn’t take the psychological wear-down and ended up quitting. He was not allowed to use corporeal punishment. Little kids as young as seven knew how to game the system. I wouldn’t doubt for a moment that all of them are now in prison or dead.

LA replies:
God bless you. You seem to have emerged very well from a difficult childhood.

Jewel A. writes::

You are welcome. I did indeed grow up to be a well-adjusted woman. I’ve been married 30 years, my children are mostly grown, and when I regale them with stories of my youth, they are quite perplexed at how stable their own lives have been. I credit my faith in God above all other things, and in spite of a mediocre education—8 schools in 12 years, I have a pretty good life.

Thank you for your site. The first time I read it was your interview with Evariste. I think it was one of the most interesting interviews I’ve ever read. He’s one in a million.

LA replies:

Evariste made several remarkable contributions to VFR, including his reply to Robert Spencer, his rejection of Darwinism, his account of his rejection of Islam, and his post on his developing belief that God has consciousness and personality. He was no more than in his early or mid twenties at the time, and extraordinarily intelligent and eloquent.

Then he stopped posting here and never came back. I don’t know why. He posted regularly at a site which (as I remember) included former fans of Charles Johnson, but when I checked out his posts there a couple of times, they were not on the substantive subjects he had written about at VFR. I have no idea where he’s gone in his intellectual development.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at August 08, 2012 12:14 PM | Send

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