Friday, March 17, 2006

Edmonton teens beat man to death

This is the headliner story we've been hearing a lot about for the last two weeks around my neck of the woods.

Apparently a group of teens was being rowdy and obnoxious on a bus, one of the passengers asked them to be quiet, and they beat death.

The link above is to an editorial in one of the local papers, commenting on the general outrage expressed by the fact that these 'kids' are out on bail. First they split the scene then turned themselves in later.

Under our Criminal Justice system people under the age of 18 are protected as 'youth' and their names are not released. So, these 16-17 year olds are out, no one knows who they are, and chances are good they are going to get very light sentences if convicted of manslaughter.

What you don't see in the online news is all the sound bytes we get constanly on the local news of the progess of the case. One thing that stands out in my mind, is how the friends and family of the accused, are often openly moaning about how these teens are actually 'good' kids.

Pardon? This baffles me.

In my mind, I'm thinking that a 'good' kid, would have not participated in the beating, and in fact, tried to get his buddies to desist.

As a parent, I'm thinking that 16 and 17 year old kids are very nearly adults. In fact, during many times in history, they would be off on their own already, functioning as adults. How can it be that people can reach this age and not have the moral boundaries and self control that tell them when their actions are wrong?

Do you think our society would be better served by having harsher punishments for adults and for 'youths'. It seems to me that there is little accountability in western culture and people literally get away with murder.

What do you think?

8 Thoughts:

Blogger Wombat & Aspen said...

Foolish as it is, it probably shouldn't be a surprise that the parents of these murderous thugs think they are sweet; after all, where did they learn this behaviour?

However, the criminal justice system isn't based on what mom and dad think, but what one's peers think. In the English vernacular, what the man on the Chelsea bus sees as reasonable.

So much of the North American CJ system has been bastardized by "progressive" judges and lawyers. Rehabilitation of repeat child sex offenders is the best case in point. In my prior domicile of Seattle, sentences had become so weak for these monsters that folks were taking matters into their own hands...and of course being painted as renegades by the antique media.

No. They were reacting to the fact that repeated molestation is so far outide societal norms, that there is no place for those people among us.

This stuff really ticks me off; and it so simple to stop crime, by taking Guiliani's "broken window" thesis that cleaned up NYC in the early nineties.


Friday, March 17, 2006 2:14:00 PM  
Anonymous kyahgirl said...

hi Wombat. :-)
Thanks for chiming in.
I didn't want to really bring it up because I'm still so horrified by it but they also recently uncovered an internet child porn ring that has roots in Edmonton. These bastards were molesting kids (in some cases infants) on line 'live' for the global perv community. I think people that are capable of that are non rehabiliatable and should be euthanized. Honestly, something is totally wrong with your instincts as an adult if you can do that sort of thing.

Tell me more about Guiliani's approach in the 90's please?

Friday, March 17, 2006 3:49:00 PM  
Blogger brooklynmum said...

A very sad and tragic story. Unfortunately, one that is becoming all too familiar these days. Personally, I think if these 'kids' were old enough to do the crime, they're old enough to do the time. And by that I mean REAL time. Not some Juvenile Detention slap-on-the-wrist time. All that does is ensure they'll be back on the street to commit more crimes sooner. There is no doubt they're hard core criminals already. You can't beat an innocent person to death and then turn around and run for class president. Don't even get me started on child molesters. Death is too lenient a punishment. Castration and THEN a slow and very painful death is more the order.

Friday, March 17, 2006 4:47:00 PM  
Blogger pawlr said...

I think that good and evil are civilizing concepts that rest uneasily upon human nature. as youth groups and cliques are given greater and greater freedom and ability to act as adults within our civilization, greater social restraints are required to keep testosterone poisoning from erupting in our public spaces.

Social reformers have a rosy-eyed view of youth and want to believe people, especially children, are naturally "good", when in fact we're naturally neither good nor evil. When the state assumes the role of the parent (and sometimes irresponsible economic and social policy causes this) children can grow up "knowing right from wrong" but in a "Lord of the Flies" reality this knowledge gets trumped by tribal imperatives. More cops is a good place to start.

Guliani's whole approach was to focus policing on "quality of life" - minor transgressions such as smoking pot, jaywalking, vandalism, etc. By preventing these, police could set the tone and limit criminals from feeling like they could commit more serious transgressions, such as robbery, rape, and murder. Results were positive, although its not clear "quality of life" approach alone was responsible, since there was a drastic increase in cops on the street during this time as well.

Friday, March 17, 2006 5:11:00 PM  
Blogger Kyahgirl said...

Brooklynmum and Pawlr - good points, thanks!

Friday, March 17, 2006 6:06:00 PM  
Blogger Wombat & Aspen said...

Here's the Wikipedia link to an overview of the theory, Kyahgirl.

Pawlr, perhaps if parents taught "youth groups and cliques" that with freedom comes responsibility, there would be less crime. You may be right about good and evil not comporting with human nature, but the fact of their existence - and ease with which we can determine what is good, and what is bad - mean that intellect can triumph over our base instincts.

Surely society fails if we fail to clearly differentiate between the two? Isn't this why we have laws and punishment?


Saturday, March 18, 2006 5:53:00 PM  
Blogger pawlr said...

I pretty much agree with you that "Society fails if we fail to clearly differentiate between the two {good and evil)" However, don't underestimate the psychic effort required for societal & parental expectations to train humans in what is Good and what is Evil. Infants are born with innate circuits to deceive, dominate, feel envy, hate, and love. They are just not born with morality. A lot of work (or repression) goes into the "ease" with which most normal people know how to tamp down on their baser insticts. Society and cilivization form a fragile crust atop the seething magma of Man's nature. That magma is the source of our potential energy but also can wipe out society as easily as a volcano wiped out Pompeii.

Saturday, March 18, 2006 6:07:00 PM  
Blogger MAT said...

Hey there. My name is mat, I just stumbled across your blog doing an internet search for this bus beating. I was listening to sonic radio online and heard about the incident. I moved from sherwood park to the caribbean about3 months ago. Im gonna bookmark your blog and check back. Keep up the good posts.


Monday, April 10, 2006 6:23:00 PM  

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