Tops on the List : Tolerance
Tops on my Crime and Justice Wish List this year is the sincere hope that America finds a way to become a better functioning and more tolerant country.
I wish for the lethargy of the electorate and the deterioration of trust and respect – in our government and in each other – to magically evaporate.
It is a tall order, I know. We live in an ugly era of perpetual backbiting that serves no real purpose but to distract us from finding solutions to very real problems.
Democrats routinely ridicule Republicans and vice versa. Various ethnic groups point to those who are different and declare their problems are the other groups fault; both heterosexuals and homosexuals complain their lifestyle is under attack; the unemployed and under-employed label business people and corporations as greedy devils without acknowledging they are the very entities providing the most jobs. Our children grow up hearing our viciousness toward one another and are likely to continue the corrosive tradition of intolerance. [click to continue…]
She Got A Golden Ticket & Squandered It
Here’s a lesson everyone needs to learn. Don’t violate a court order. It will only make your problems worse. There is never an acceptable excuse for going against what a judge has ordered. Not even if you think it is unfair. Not even if it’s a matter of the heart.
Not long ago I wrote a column – actually, a rather sympathetic column – about the plight of Florida teenager Kaitlyn Hunt. At 18, Hunt’s high school sweetheart was just 14 and female. Because Florida’s statutory rape law stipulates that no one under 16 can legally consent to sexual contact – Hunt was expelled from her high school where she had been an excellent student and athlete.
In mid-February, Hunt was charged with two felony counts of lewd and lascivious behavior with a minor. Circuit Court Judge Robert Pegg issued a no-contact order instructing Kaitlyn to have no further contact with the younger girl. [click to continue…]
Can Laws Really Regulate Teen Sex?
If an adult has sexual relations with a 14 year old that’s bad, right?
Okay, well what if that “adult” has just turned 18 and has a younger teen as a love interest? Would their actions be as serious a crime as, say, a 40-year-old with a young teen?
The law says yes. The law calls it statutory rape when anyone who has reached adulthood has sex with a person under the age of 16. (In a few states it is age 15) It doesn’t matter if it is an older person is male or female or if the younger person is a girl or boy. It is illegal and often punishable by a hefty prison sentence.
The case that brings this issue to the forefront is playing out now in Sebastian, Florida. [click to continue…]
Hopes and Wishes for 2013
Where do I even begin with my annual Wish List for the New Year? Because the fog of despair still hangs over us from the elementary school shooting in Connecticut – and because the list of individually meaningless gun control ideas continues to grow – I’m compelled to start there.
I fervently hope that we, as a nation, can come to an agreement on a whole package of anti-gun violence ideas to try to make this country safer. I hope the shrill hysterics – heard from both sides – can be tuned down in favor of common sense solutions.
To those who think all we need to do is get rid of assault rifles, 30-bullet magazines or those video games youngsters spend so many hours playing I say: Don’t kid yourself. After Newtown, Connecticut there was another gun massacre in Webster, New York. I seriously doubt the shooter, William Spengler, who served 17 years in prison for beating to death his grandmother with a hammer, had ever played a violent video game. [click to continue…]
US-More Than 300 Million Guns
In a study just presented to congress the Congressional Research Service concludes, “the estimated total number of firearms available to civilians in the United States (is) approximately 310 million: 114 million handguns, 110 million rifles, and 86 million shotguns.” Think about that. That translates to about one firearm for every man, woman and child in America. Mind-boggling.
To my mind, however, it is not about the numbers so much as it is about the mental health of the person using the gun. Now, hold that thought a moment. [click to continue…]
There’s No Honor In Waiting Too Long
I’d like to take this opportunity to express my thanks to the Boy Scouts of America – NOT.
The national organization has just announced it will reveal to police the names of men it has suspected in the past of stalking young boy scouts for sexual purposes.
Well, finally! When you look at the history of this you see it is long past due.
This oftentimes revered organization was founded in 1910 and almost immediately officials started to keep secret files on sexual predators who hovered around attempting to prey on young boys. [click to continue…]
Want One? Be Prepared
Are you and your family among those who can’t wait to get their hands on one of the new Apple iPhone 5’s? Have you already gotten yours?
If so, well, congratulations! You’ve just added yourself to a growing number of potential robbery victims being targeted in sprees sprouting up nationwide. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but there are those out there who see your new communications toy – be it an iPhone, i-Pad, Smartphone or other type of mobile device – as a way to make a fast buck. Steal it, sell it, make some dishonest money. [click to continue…]
Who or What Do You Trust?
“With liberty and justice for all…..” are the last six words of our Pledge of Allegiance. I’m just sappy enough to still hold on to that sentiment as the creed for my country. But to achieve a true feeling of justice you have to have faith, right? So let me ask. How’s your faith holding up? Mine is a little shaky lately.
I’m not talking about a religion-based faith. I’m talking about the faith and admiration we need to have in our government, our social institutions, our communities and our fellow citizens.
An article in the National Journal entitled, “In Nothing We Trust” got me thinking. [click to continue…]