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Probable life sentence for a 13yo in the USA (warning: potentially distressing news story)

(149 Posts)
VivaLeBeaver Mon 17-Sep-12 19:20:00

here (MNHQ: link to details of potentially distressing news story)

I know what he did was awful and he's obviously got issues, previous incidents of a sexual nature, killing a cat, etc. but I can't think that this is right. This sounds like a boy who's been badly let down, exposed to horrible stuff, etc. I really hate to think of him spending the rest of his life in prison. He's a child, he needs help. He needed help before it got to this stage.

MrsTerrysChocolateOrange Mon 24-Sep-12 01:33:44

13 year old murdering nonces. Using the word 'nonce' about a child who has been abused and has gone on to abuse another child really doesn't sit well with me.

OhNoMyFoot Mon 24-Sep-12 04:59:23

I don't think you can feel sorry for the child without feeling sorry for the mother, isn't she just and older version of him? At what stage does how you spent your earlier years stop being the cause/reason/excuse? At what age do they suddenly have to have woken up one day and complete change into someone else?

DoubleLifeIsALifeHalved Mon 24-Sep-12 05:45:31

what an awful mess. it would be so good to see reviews and different procedures being put in place to save the next family of children ending up like that... but it worn happen will it? it will just be lets lock that child away as we broke him he can't be allowed out... and nothing will be done to help his mother, or his cousins, or other people like him. God, its depressing.

nankypeevy Mon 24-Sep-12 07:22:58

Extro I wasn't bashing republicans - I meant there's a bias in the UK press which only reports their more peculiar policies.

It's actually very hard to bash republicans.

It's their slime, makes em hard to keep a hold of.

pointythings Mon 24-Sep-12 18:09:10

MrsTerry - what you said. Anyone using the word 'nonce' to describe an abused 13yo is in my book a wingnut who has had a compassion bypass.

Extrospektiv Mon 24-Sep-12 18:23:01

pointy & mrsterrys- way out of line. Sexual abuser= nonce. End of. Age does not matter. I say that the word stud muffin on a toddler's top is not a problem and people think I'm not concerned enough about sexualisation of children. Here, we have an act of serious sexual abuse in a court, although committed by a minor he had a huge power imbalance in his favour over the victim. I can accept that if he had received better care he may not have turned out this way, and that he is a victim of violence in his own right (see my earlier post retracting the "not a victim" line I took in haste once I had read the article.) I do not like the way people are minimising his crime though.

I knew a 13 year old at school who sexually assaulted his younger (8-9 year old) sister. He was a fucking nonce, too. It is a street term. It is not a term to be defined by bien-pensant liberal professionals who think everyone should be let off until they're 16/18/even older. So if you don't like me using it, hard luck. I have compassion for the child he abused and the family and friends of his murder victim first and foremost. I do also have compassion for Christian but it must not become a sentimentality that clouds our judgment of his evil actions.

"Paedophile" refers to an adult and according to some definitions to older adolescents, and would be a sensationalist/inaccurate term to use here. Hence me not doing so

Oh, and if I was a wingnut I'd be at least approving of life sentence/adult prison placement if not complaining they don't use the death penalty for juveniles any more. I'm not a bloody wingnut. I know some otherwise perfectly decent and compassionate people who have told me they support executing the James Bulger killers, even though they were 10 years old at the time. To respond to murder with punishment is normal.

MrsTerrysChocolateOrange Mon 24-Sep-12 18:23:17

pointy I agree. You know what it reminds me of... when soldiers use words like gook or argie to describe the enemy. You don't want to have to empathise with someone, so you name them something belittling, then you can compartmentalise them and not care. If you call them the behaviour (i.e. nonce), their humanity is diminished enough that you can advocate locking them up without feeling guilty.

Life is much more complicated than some people would like to admit. This boy and his mother are both victims who need compassion and care AND perpetrators who need to be rehabilitated/punished/protected against. Most of the perpetrators I have met are victims too, often their crimes are much less serious than the crimes of their abusers. IMO we need to focus more on preventing abuse and less on punishing. Whatever prevents should be the first option. That may well be keeping someone away from children for the rest of their life if they are a very prolific child abuser. But this can be done humanely, with compassion.

MrsTerrysChocolateOrange Mon 24-Sep-12 18:25:26

Oh, and as far as I know nonce is a prison term, not a street term <rolls eyes>

pointythings Mon 24-Sep-12 18:32:05

So extro it's OK to use abusive terms about someone who has been sexually and physically abused all his life. Because it's a street term. What a nice person you are.

Well, guess what? Most of us don't live on the streets. We aren't liberals, we just have manners.

None of us here are advocating no punishment at all, we are just taking a slightly more nuanced stance than you.

And you're right, you aren't a wingnut. Wingnuts are useful things, you are just plain offensive.

MrsTerry I think we should now stop engaging with Extro. I completely agree with you, BTW.

Extrospektiv Mon 24-Sep-12 18:39:28

"street term"= slang/colloquial NOT= "living on the streets"
as you well know.

No need to be a smart-arse because someone has the temerity to accurately describe a perverted murderer who happens to still be in puberty.

But I'm out on this one. I thought my compromise (parole after 15 years, no transfer to adult prison before age 18) was fair enough and would certainly see less than that as being liberal. I vehemently disapprove of the way you speak about me and the offender so there's no point in me continuing this.

MrsTerrysChocolateOrange Mon 24-Sep-12 18:41:22

pointy I have had this argument conversation many times with people. I don't think people are comfortable with the idea of looking at all aspects of the case before passing judgement. I think I know why. I have worked for many years with victims of abuse, perpetrators of abuse and all those people who are both. It is extremely difficult to hear their histories. I don't like thinking about it, even when it is essential. It is much easier to say, "evil" or "scum" or "not human" then you can go on with your day and not fit this horrible stuff in your brain. However, if we want abuse to reduce, we need to understand why it happens, what can be done to prevent it, what treatment, punishment, rehabilitation and justice MEAN.

Ultimately, I want abuse to end. If I thought this could be accomplished most easily by locking people away for long periods in max security, I might be for that. I think we have proved that this does not work. Possibly trying to work out what does work is liberal and progressive, it might just be sensible.

domesticgodless Mon 24-Sep-12 18:49:45

Extro you are a truly frightening individual.

I think you'd be at home in America.

No worries though, soon we'll have the same sick system here. Our welfare reform orphans can roam the streets until they're old enough to commit crime. Then at huge cost we can bang them up until they grow old.

pointythings Mon 24-Sep-12 18:56:01

MrsTerry I agree with your analysis. Extro seems to have problems with the fact that the rest of us are describing this lad as someone who is a human being - far more comfortable to think of them as 'other' or 'monster'. No-one on her has actually described him as a poor ickle angel, but all we get is vitriol...

It's in people's nature to want things to be simple, though - that's why you get mobs. On all sides of the political spectrum.

Extrospektiv Mon 24-Sep-12 19:00:06

I have seen people (including me) being told they should go to America for various things before on this forum, a * being me in favour:

Supporting Mitt Romney(*)
Disapproval of homosexual marriage(undecided)
Being pro-life for unborn babies(*) and/or pro-death penalty(no)
Supporting a tax system closer to libertarianism(no, I'm pro welfare)
For abolishing the NHS(no)
Opposing "metropolitan elite liberalism" (my phrase, *)
Opposing teachers who keep secrets for pupils about their sexual relationships and/or refer them to family planning services without their parents being informed (*)

That displays the wild intolerance of certain members of this site. Some people assume if you don't have the majority opinion in your country, you should exile yourself? What the fucking fuck, is this a dictatorship or what?

Conservatives can be just as "at home" in Britain as left-wingers, thank you very much. To believe otherwise is viewpoint discrimination and bigotry. There is room for everyone here.

monsterchild Mon 24-Sep-12 22:18:02

Extro, you're welcome here in the US. We like folks with opinions and I think you've been quite rational. Being conservative isn't a crime, and there's lots of good in your posts (I think, as a liberal US-ian).

We need differing view points to keep an even keel. I'm sure Britain does too!

This case is complex, tragic and disturbing. I don't think that your view has been out of line, I think you have good arguements as do other posters. It's too easy to claim it's the Man's fault when there are so many things going on.

I at least, appreciate your posts.

AmberLeaf Mon 24-Sep-12 23:24:54

Do you teach Extro?

Jess christ you are fucking dangerous.

AmberLeaf Mon 24-Sep-12 23:25:16

oh and nonce is a prison term not a street term.

MrsTerrysChocolateOrange Mon 24-Sep-12 23:46:39

I think not having decided about gay marriage gets you off my Christmas list anyway. Whether two people, who love each other and are adults and consent should be allowed to marry just because they are men, no women, no sorry men and women can both marry... why can't a man marry a man or a woman? Seems to me that the only time I should have an opinion about someone getting married is if my DH tried bigamy. Otherwise, live and let live.

slug Tue 25-Sep-12 11:13:24

Dehumanising (English spelling) for Electro. The Nazis were fond of it (invokes Godwin's law)

Extrospektiv Tue 25-Sep-12 11:37:01

It's not inhumane to call someone a name like "nonce" on an anonymous internet forum when they have done something very bad. Some of the anti-responsibility comments are closer to being genuinely dehumanising.

you are fucking dangerous shock
AmberLeaf how can you POSSIBLY say that? What did I say? That I want children to be harmed? No, only that if they are old enough to commit a serious crime they should be treated accordingly (and not as severely as an adult who did the same thing.)

Calling me a risk sounds over-the-top to me.

pumpkinsweetie Tue 25-Sep-12 11:39:33

Why has the subject changed completely-gay marriages?, what has that got to do with this it bears no comparision to the boy in question whatsoever!!!

Anyway the boy is a nonce, he raped a 5 year old and he also killed his brother so that also makes him a murderer whether people like to hear it, they are the facts.

Extrospektiv Tue 25-Sep-12 11:41:08

Good to see someone who understands pumpkin

Because someone told me to move to America for my moderately conservative view on the subject.

I was highlighting other things that leftist MNers have responded to in the recent past with "go to America" and the bigotry of this nonsense.

slug Tue 25-Sep-12 11:49:54

Try reading the link again Extrospektiv and try and see what people on this thread have been trying to get across to you.

Extrospektiv Tue 25-Sep-12 11:59:47

Still, Amberleaf's comments implied I was a risk around children. Which apart from being false and deeply offensive, followed from nothing I said.

domesticgodless Tue 25-Sep-12 13:18:27

It's hardly bigotry to suggest you move to where the Republicans hold sway. You support them after all which makes you way to the right of most British Conservatives as far as I can tell.

I really don't care where you live tbh (although it's disturbing how deeply far right views have penetrated Britain) and how on earth could I have any influence on it anyway?

How very odd to scream 'bigotry' when someone makes a comment like that. Unless you think America's an awful place what's wrong with suggesting you might like it there better than this liberal hellhole where we believe in treatment rather than punishment for horribly abused 13 year old children?

And the word you and pumpkin use is just repulsive when applied to someone who's suffered as he has. It's slang, not a technical term, and meant to insult and write off the person targeted.
I guess you're both using it because you can't call him a 'paedo' because you are confused as to whether a child can be one of those. Bah.

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