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Old 04 June 2014, 06:29 PM
Sue Bee Sue Bee is offline
Join Date: 06 September 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 3,858

Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
Quite possibly not in the sense that an adult can understand it.

However, I think most 12 year olds, and even most children quite a bit younger, are quite capable of understanding that stabbing somebody is wrong and that it is seriously wrong; and that killing, or attempting to kill, somebody is wrong and that it is seriously wrong.
**snipped for brevity***
One of the girls reportedly told police that she knew what they had done was wrong, that she felt bad, but that by killing the victim, the girls would prove the skeptics wrong about the existence of Slender Man. They were going to kill her, then walk to Slender Man's mansion (details here).

That the girl seemingly doesn't separate reality from fiction tells me that she isn't in a good position to realize the gravity of what she did.

There is a difference, too, between knowing that doing something is wrong or bad (or even knowing the varying degrees of wrongness), and knowing why doing something is wrong or bad, having a concept of the all around impact of the action. At what age does one really comprehend death, especially if one has never experienced someone close to them dying? Do these girls fully comprehend the impact that this crime has had on the victim, on her family, on society? Do they comprehend the physical and emotional pain and suffering that they put the victim through or her family? Are they capable of doing so? Do they even understand what they've done to themselves or their own families, the emotional impact and the financial impact that is going to happen here, what they've done to themselves for the rest of their lives?

I am not saying that there are not 12 year olds who aren't capable of grasping most, if not all, of these concepts. But I would argue that they're in the minority.
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