spin cycle: absconder

If you’re new here, Spin Cycle is where we reach into the news with our bare hands and pull out a word or phrase that doesn’t sound right to us.

Did you hear the story about the convicted child rapist who escaped from a halfway house in Colorado?

This is a horrible story all around, and there’s a lot to talk about here, like the fact that people who abuse children were almost always abused themselves when they were children — and we could probably spend all day talking about how to keep people from hurting children (or adults) while remembering that they are humans like us — but the thing we’re going to talk about instead is how the PR guy for the Colorado Department of Corrections called the escaped prisoner an “absconder.”

You can see why he would do that. He works for the organization that was supposed to be keeping an eye on the escapee, and it’s his job to make that organization look as good as possible. It’s much easier to forgive them for losing track of a sneaky absconder than for failing to keep a convicted child rapist off the streets.

If you are trying to get information about something that happened, it’s important to consider your source.