BANGKOK, Aug. 7 — It is the pink armband of shame for wayward
police officers, as cute as can be with a Hello Kitty face and a pair
of linked hearts.
No matter how many ribbons for
valor a Thai officer may wear, if he parks in the wrong place, or shows
up late for work, or is seen dropping a bit of litter on the sidewalk,
he can be ordered to wear the insignia.
“Simple warnings no
longer work,” said Pongpat Chayaphan, acting chief of the Crime
Suppression Division in Bangkok, who instituted the new humiliation
“This new twist is expected to make them feel guilt
and shame and prevent them from repeating the offense, no matter how
minor,” he said. “Kitty is a cute icon for young girls. It’s not
something macho police officers want covering their biceps.”
Ten of the armbands have been prepared, but so far none have actually
been issued, according to an officer who declined to give his name
while discussing this sensitive topic.
“After this policy came
out, the police are scared,” the officer said. “It will be very
embarrassing to walk around with Hello Kitty on your arm.” It is a step
down from the Crime Suppression Division’s official motto: “When you
have no one to turn to, come to us.”
photo: Yasushi Ukigaya/Kyodo News, via Associated Press
"A Sicilian mother took away her
61-year-old son's house keys, cut off his allowance and hauled
him to the police station because he stayed out late.
Tired of her son's misbehavior, the retiree in the central
Sicilian city of Caltagirone turned to the police to "convince
this blockhead" to behave properly, La Sicilia, one of Sicily's
leading newspapers, reported on Thursday.
The son responded by saying his mother did not give him a
big enough weekly allowance and did not know how to cook.
"My son does not respect me, he doesn't tell me where he's
going in the evenings and returns home late," the woman was
quoted as saying. "He is never happy with the food I make and
always complains. This can't go on.""