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October 21, 2007


Mary Emken

I read the artical on the 14 year old that was beaten to death in boot camp. I agree something is very wrong in our Judisial systom. But why are these parents sending there children off to these boot camps when they can't handle them?! Children do not ask to be born. Parents are putting their child in front of the t.v. with a bottle in their mouth and letting the t.v. do the parenting. ( Not all parents) Parents today need to be there with the children to channal aggressive urges into constructive action that begins in chilhood.The longer urges lingers,the harder it is to shake. Befor a baby even starts to talk it has feelings of irretation and anger and they experience the physical sensation that goes with them Once they start to grow up parents need to set rules and limits,"no hitting,treat others the way you want to be treated." Pay attention to their emotional state.Decide on consequences that fit the crime when they do something wrong. Most of all forgive them. Accept a child's apology and give them a hug and kiss. We all need a hug and kiss once in a while. This way your restoreing his or her belief in their self. They need to know you care. Just maybe a child can be prevented from being dragged off in hand cuffs in the future. We all want this madness to stop with children.


I'm not sure I agree with this one. Teenagers are more than old enough to understand what they are doing and the consequences of their actions. The problem is not that we are punishing them too harshly for their crimes, it's that we have teenagers out there raping and murdering people in the first place.


Powerful post, Nicholas.

Rich in reason, raw in the matters of the heart.

Fucking awesome post!

The very fact that we have government-sanctioned child abuse is one more reason to hang my head in shame at what our country has not only engaged in, but approved of.

The rise of the Christian Taliban and its grip on the politicians is, IMO, THE main reason that this form of heartbreaking child abuse is rampant today.


Awesome post!


Wylie Kinson

I'm so shocked I don't know what to say...
The story of the bootcamp murder - appalling. I can't understand the mentality of it. In fact, perhaps I'd better go stick my head back in the sands-of-ignorance. Stuff like this keeps me awake at night.


I believe that the backlash from Columbine has been a complete overreaction and that as a result, children's "normal" behavior is being over-evaluated. When I was a kid and when generations of kids before me were out playing, we had toy guns, hid behind pretend bunkers and fell emotionally and emotively dead when "killed" by our opponents.

The "zero tolerance" policy has resulted in parents of first graders being called on the carpet for their child talking about bombing something. Shoot (pun intended)...they could have learned that on the History channel as easily as they could have learned it playing X-box games.

I think we, as a society, have to be vigilant in our awareness of what is going on in our children's lives and not turn a blind eye to indicators that things could be going awry. However, at such young ages, I don't think children can be held to the same standards and punished by the same laws as adults.

I believe (and I have NO proof of this) that children can actually be rehabilitated...whereas I am more inclined to believe that multiple adult transgressors become more inclined toward recidivism by our penal system.

I don't even want to re-read probably makes more sense.


some teenagers can be more cruel than adults, precisely because they don't have a full understanding of the consequences of their acions. they can't emphatize. does it mean that we should "forgive" them their cruelty, just because they don't fully understand their actions? ask someone who lost their loved one because some stupid kid with no imagination and conscience was in a killing mood.
my liberal heart is not that big.

another issue is that newcomers/voluntary immigrants to the U.S. make a choice and accept the country as it is. once you get a citizenship, that's a different story. then you can try to change what you don't like. until then, we can be outraged, but ultimately we chose to live here, so we should respect their laws, as ridiculous as they are.

another issue is doing what you're doing: communicating to Americans that somewhere else in the world "we don't kill people who kill people to show that killing people is wrong." (that's my bumper sticker) essentially, what I am saying is that getting outraged may be healthy, but it's not enough. action would be preferable, but if I don't count because I don't vote, then the second best thing is to convince those who can vote to take action and change the law.

end of my rambling speech. that's the effect of no sleep.


i wake up every day and hope that the rest of the world knows that most of america doesn't fit the mold that we represent in the rest of the world...and then i wonder what i should do to make sure that they know it.
this post is a good brick in the wall.
thank you for writing it.


Yesh... You can't very well say the US is a model for humane behavior anymore.

There are so many sides and nuances to this story. If I hear the phrase, "culture of death," from one more jerk who thinks the death penalty and the war in Iraq are good ideas, I think I'll scream.

Truth be told, there might be some teenagers that aren't rehabilitatable, but I'm not willing to make a judgement like that without at least trying to rehabilitate them and I don't see why a judge with any kind of heart should.

Parents are making poor decisions. Maybe we could do some kind of media blitz to remind them that they have a job to do. Maybe a show on MTV? Of course, it would probably have to have a fistfight and a sex scene or two.

Joy Renee

This is one of my pet peeves too. I get so wound up about it, I sputter when I try to talk about it. My mind sputters when I try to think about it. As for writing about it? I loose whatever eloquence I have. All I can do is weep. Or tell stories: the seeds of many of my stories have sprouted in the compost of the dark emotions aroused by empathy with the pain of a child.

That was also the catapult that shot me out of the Religious Fundamentalist mindset which fosters the concepts about the souls of children which justifies this kind of 'caring' for them.

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