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  #41  
Old 03 June 2014, 09:24 PM
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Nobody is fawning. I was suggesting that 12 is too young for society to give up on someone and effectively throw them away. Others were suggesting it is too young to be tried as an adult.
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  #42  
Old 03 June 2014, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
Can you only have sympathy for one person at a time? Is there only so much sympathy to go around so that you must take from one person to have it for another?
I've been known to sympathize with the devil, my point in this thread is I have no sympathy for these particular girls at this moment in time. That would change should they actually be sentenced to life or 60 years or some other ridiculous sentence. I do have sympathy for their parents. I cannot imagine what they must be feeling right now.
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  #43  
Old 03 June 2014, 09:35 PM
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And I don't think anyone has been suggesting that people should be sympathetic to them or more sympathetic. Just that maybe we putting them on trial as adults or locking them up forever is a little harsh for a 12 year old, even a 12 year old who tried to stab another to death. The thread is about the perpetrators after all.
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  #44  
Old 03 June 2014, 10:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Errata View Post
If the person you have sympathy for is the perpetrator who intentionally caused the victim to require sympathy, then yes fawning over the perpetrator does detract from the seriousness of what the victim is going through.
Please show some examples of this alleged "fawning."
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  #45  
Old 04 June 2014, 04:24 AM
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And it's not like anyone here is even entertaining the suggestion that the legal system shouldn't react at all this.

If anyone here was actually playing anything close to the "Well they are just kids being kids and we should just let this slide" card I'd be the first to call them out.

Should the children in question be dealt with in some way? Absolutely. Should they keep a close eye on for a good amount of time by a competent authority? Without question. Should steps be taken to prevent them from hurting anyone else? Unequivocally. I don't think anyone here is even beginning to argue otherwise.

Asking whether they should be "punished" is largely semantic and legal definitional. In the strict legal sense they really shouldn't be able to in my opinion because they don't have enough legal rights and responsibilities to commit a crime to be punished for. On a layman speaking off the cuff level should they punished in the sense that some form of negative, restrictive reaction be applied to them? Yeah probably.

As I said earlier is massively hypocritical to just up and declare juveniles "adults" when they do something wrong and have no equivalent to be able declare them "adults" in other cases.

Basically right now we're telling children "You are a child, basically almost a non-person from a legal perspective. You are pretty much legally defined as unable to make decisions for yourself or participate in society at large up until you reach a certain age and there is no way for you to break through that by displaying advanced levels of intelligence, maturity, and personal responsibility in order to take on adult rights early... except for when you do something wrong and we want to punish you for it. You can only be an adult in situations that are negative, never in one that positive."

And that is B.S. The fact that literally the only time, only scenario in which a child can be declared an adult early is when we want to punish them.

These are two 12 year olds. If this was a news story about how they wanted to prove they were so mature they should be able to vote (including in the ultimate hypocrisy voting on referendums on whether or not minors should be tried as an adult) or buy a gun or join the military or drive a car or get married or have sex or smoke a cigar or apply for a subprime home mortgage or literally anything else we define as something only adults get to do not a single person would even entertain the notion. Therefore it is two faced to be doing it here.

Last edited by JoeBentley; 04 June 2014 at 04:29 AM.
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  #46  
Old 04 June 2014, 06:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Sue View Post
I've been known to sympathize with the devil, my point in this thread is I have no sympathy for these particular girls at this moment in time.
The thing is we shouldn't be talking sympathy.

Sympathy, empathy, pity... this are all subjective emotional constructs that don't really have a place in passionless legal system.

I don't have sympathy for the two girls that did the killing but that doesn't matter. I'm not basing my opinion on emotional turmoil.

We can have a concept of justice without having to bring this into it.

Justice being something more then just emotional satisfaction is one of those things we gave up to live in a society ruled by law.

I'm the farthest thing from a Bleeding Heart this board has. I'm not defending the two girls. I'm defending the system because it is more important then any one single case.
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  #47  
Old 04 June 2014, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by A Turtle Named Mack View Post
You can feel pain for the victim and still want what is best for the perpetrator without being contradictory or minimizing the offense.
Mark the date, folks, Mack and I agree.
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  #48  
Old 04 June 2014, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
As I said earlier is massively hypocritical to just up and declare juveniles "adults" when they do something wrong and have no equivalent to be able declare them "adults" in other cases.
Isn't that what "emancipation" is for?
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  #49  
Old 04 June 2014, 01:21 PM
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Ed Gein, Jeffery Dahlmer, and now this. What is it about Wisconsin?
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  #50  
Old 04 June 2014, 01:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post

As I said earlier is massively hypocritical to just up and declare juveniles "adults" when they do something wrong and have no equivalent to be able declare them "adults" in other cases.
What other cases? Juveniles can marry, join the army, quit school, have sex, get jobs etc. Sometimes with parental permission and sometimes not just by reaching a certain age, which is not the legal age of majority. What scenarios are you envisioning where juveniles don't get to be considered adults but should be?

For the record I emphatically agree that 12 yr olds should never be tried as adults (and I understand children even younger than 12 have been tried as adults in the US) but in Canada the way we treat violent, not to mention murderous teens need to be revisited. Perhaps not by trying them as adults but certainly by not giving them 5 years no matter what the crime (if that has indeed changed I will be happy to be informed of it!)

Last edited by Sue; 04 June 2014 at 02:04 PM.
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  #51  
Old 04 June 2014, 02:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
The thing is we shouldn't be talking sympathy.

Sympathy, empathy, pity... this are all subjective emotional constructs that don't really have a place in passionless legal system.
You should replace your "don't" with a "shouldn't".

For example, US and Canadian legal systems allow victim impact statements. This is purely emotional. Juries are often selected based upon an emotional connection the potential juror has with either the victim or perpetrator by both the prosecution and the defence. Mitigating factors are frequently used during sentencing (he is the sole provider for his family, she was abused frequently as a child, he has progressed well breaking the addiction) which play to pity, sympathy or emotion.

A purely passionless system is full of zero-tolerance policies. And zero-tolerance policies rarely work.
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  #52  
Old 04 June 2014, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Elkhound View Post
Isn't that what "emancipation" is for?
Roughly 20,00 children are emancipated in the US every year.

Roughly 250,000 are tried as adults.

And I'd wager emancipation for 12 year olds is statistically insignificant.

22 states have no minimum age at which someone can be tried as an adult. 2 set it at 10 years old. The remaining ones vary from 12 to 15.

Near as I can tell the youngest age where emancipation is even really an option is 14 or so and usually not until 16.

So yeah emancipation does exist as a concept, but it's obviously not "balancing out" juveniles being tried as adult.
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  #53  
Old 04 June 2014, 03:42 PM
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If this were a thread about the victim, I'm sure there would be sympathy expressed, and then either the thread would quickly die, or the discussion would turn to something else, like how the perpetrators were being treated, or a discussion of the slender man myth, etc. We tend not to have long threads of everyone agreeing that, yes, this was a tragedy and the victim deserves our sympathy. So just because those things aren't being said doesn't mean that they aren't being felt. It's a fallacy to conclude that.

I have enormous sympathy for victims, and I think there are things to be done to improve how the system deals with them, and what resources are available to them. That issue wasn't really presented in the OP, but I'd be happy to discuss that too. But sympathy for one side of the dynamic does not mean I can't sympathize with the other side as well. But I'm not seeing a genuine desire to discuss the victim so much as a kind of concern trolling meant to derail discussion of a different topic.
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  #54  
Old 04 June 2014, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Sue Bee View Post
l I don't believe that these girls can possibly understand the gravity of their actions. .
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.

As evidence, I bring the fact that (at least outside of war zones) it's also extraordinarily rare. It's possible, I suppose, that serious attempts at murder by two year olds are rare not due to their ability to understand that it's wrong but only to their physical incapability. However, most twelve year olds, and many younger children, are quite physically capable of stabbing somebody; and almost every house is full of kitchen knives. So if most children were incapable of understanding that the gravity of the action of stabbing someone is much greater than the gravity of, say, not cleaning one's room, or swearing at one's parent, or saying one's homework is done when it isn't, or even cheating on a test or shoplifting: I'd expect there to be a whole lot more stabbings done by children than there are.

-- That doesn't, of course, address the issue of how twelve-year-old murderers or would-be murderers should be treated by society, when it does happen. But to imply that of course they couldn't have been expected to understand that stabbing people is a gravely serious matter because they're only twelve seems to me to be mistaken.
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  #55  
Old 04 June 2014, 05:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
I'll be that guy. We had a thread about someone who was bullied in elementary school and proud to say the bullies ended up in jail as adults.
Then you misunderstood. I was that guy. I wasn't "proud" that three kids ended up in trouble with the law - it was stated mater-of-fact. If anything, I was trying to prove that the ONE kid had a family that cared - they got him counseling, and he DIDN'T get into trouble later. If anything, I'm sad. I knew one of the kids earlier through sports. Wasn't a troublemaker; listened; OK kid. The fact that his life took a wrong turn saddens me. The fact that he has been arrested for breaking and entering brings me no joy. The fact that one of the bullies got the help he needed makes me happy.
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  #56  
Old 04 June 2014, 06:29 PM
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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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  #57  
Old 04 June 2014, 11:24 PM
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Slenderman is an extradimensional eldritch abomination whose motivations we can neither guess at nor comprehend. He does not live in an mansion in Wisconsin. Also, he isn't real. As someone who used to read a bunch of the original Slenderman blogs, I'm really bewildered by their interpretation of the character.
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  #58  
Old 04 June 2014, 11:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sue Bee View Post
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. .
I am not saying that this specific child is capable of realizing that what she did is seriously wrong. I am saying that, if she isn't, I don't think it's primarily because she is twelve.

She may have "felt bad", or she may have been lying about that. But if she did "feel bad", she didn't feel bad enough not to do it anyway. And knowing that others consider it wrong, or even considering it wrong herself, isn't the same thing as considering it so wrong that it's something one doesn't do for reasons like that. The problem isn't even primarily that she thinks Slenderman is real. The problem is that she thinks it's reasonable to stab someone to death in order to prove that.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sue Bee View Post
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.
If twelve year olds capable of grasping at least enough of them to understand that it's really important not to commit murder are in the minority, then again, why are murders and serious attempts at murder by young children so rare?
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  #59  
Old 05 June 2014, 12:09 AM
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I don't think anyone is saying this crime was commited by typical 12-year-olds. But the perpetrators being 12 years old is still very important to how they are treated, and how much of a change might be expected to occur in a few years with proper care and treatment.

ETA: This is relevant. http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...37514122387446. Again, the perpetrators wouldn't be typical 12-year-olds, and for girls, the higher empathy skills don't even start increasing steadily until 13. Kids who have problems that an adult might weather with access to greater inner resources might wind up carrying out actions that an adult could restrain, or redirect, etc.

Last edited by erwins; 05 June 2014 at 12:21 AM.
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  #60  
Old 05 June 2014, 01:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sue Bee View Post
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).
I found an interesting online commentary on that last aspect:

http://www.jasoncolavito.com/blog/sl...e-supernatural
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