Camp teaches police skills

Full story: Altoona Mirror
Jumping over walls, climbing nets and following authority are some of the challenges that Abigail Johnson and her fellow cadets face at the 21st Annual Cadet Camp of Bedford County. Read more
Lucy Hammel

Englewood, FL

#1 Jul 12, 2011
My two daughters attended this camp this summer, and I was extremely disappointed with what they learned there. While I fully support hard work and discpline,I cannot support Camp Cadet and the officers' treatment of children. Rather than building confidence and respect, this camp taught my daughters the following:

1. Having a legitimate health condition is a fault worthy of shame, embarrassment, and physical punishment.

2. Girls are inferior to boys.

3. "Civilians" (including parents) are inferior and less intelligent than officers, who, in the officers' words "live life at the front of the line and can get away with lying."

These children were not built up; they were torn down. My fourteen year-old has nightmares about state troopers almost nightly, and she no longer wants to join the Air Force as she had been planning. Both of my daughters have lost all respect for troopers. One boy was so traumatized that he ran away (all the way home) in the middle of the night. Another child, who was somewhat larger, was unable to run as fast as the other children, so they threatened to run her over with the golf cart and proceeded to scream at her and ride within inches of her heels. One boy was so ill from asthma attacks and continuous coughing that he couldn't even eat any meals the first two days of camp. He was forced to do extra pushups as punishment for coughing and he was refused his inhaler when it was needed. I had no problem with my daughters being physically challenged, but this is not an appropriate camp for twelve to fifteen-year-olds. Let's treat children age appropriately; save the boot camp for adults. Take my advice, save your children from the post traumatic stress and skip this "camp."

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