Posts Tagged ‘Rape’

15-Year-Old Beaten and Gang Raped for 2 Hours After Homecoming Dance

October 27, 2009

I just heard about a story out of Richmond, CA that really made my blood boil. On Saturday, a 15-year-old girl was beaten and gang raped for 2 hours after she left her school’s homecoming dance. After leaving the Richmond High School homecoming dance around 9:30 P.M. to get a ride home with her father, the girl ended up meeting up with some kids on the school campus who were drinking.

Richomnd Police Lieutenant Mark Gagan told reporters, “The series of events that occurred over the next two and a half hours got more severe and more vicious to where she was ultimately gang raped, beaten and her injuries were so severe that she had to be sent to the hospital in a helicopter.”  The victim is still in the hospital, currently in stable condition.

There’s been some controversy over whether or not the school is safe.  After being asked by reporters if he thought the school was safe, one male student said, “No it’s not. Not at night time.”  Charles Ramsey, a Richmond school board member disagreed, saying, “It is a safe school, 95 percent of the students here perform well, do what they’re expected to do, but do we have a part of the campus element here that is out of control?  Yes.  We do understand and are not putting our head in the sand around the fact that Richmond has a lot of issues and problems in terms of safety.”

The school district spokesman, Marin Trujillo said, “There’s just so much control that one can do after that, once they leave the sidewalk we can’t follow them home,” regarding the safety of the homecoming dance.

Since the attack, 2 arrests have been made: a 15-year-old student, as well as a 19-year-old former student, Manuel Ortega, who was caught as he tried to flee the scene of the crime.

Gagan said that police arrived as the 2+ hour-long rape was still taking place, and that “we’re looking at four to seven active participants of sexual assault and extremely violent felonies.  We’re also suspecting there were up to a dozen people who witnessed what had happened and their involvement is unknown.”

The 15-year-old male was arrested after being pulled from class for questioning.  Another student was pulled out of class for questioning, but was released.

What I’d like to know is how the heck could 12 people stand by and watch this happen?  What kind of sick twisted person wouldn’t call the police!  The people who joined in and raped and attacked this girl need to be arrested and locked up for the rest of their lives.  I would argue that they should probably be given the death penalty, considering how heinous of a crime this was, but the death penalty isn’t an option in rape cases any more.  But they should certainly be locked up for the rest of their lives.  A crime this heinous and disgusting deserves a harsh punishment.

And while those who watched may not be charged with any crime (depending on whether or not they cheered it on, they could possibly be charged as conspirators or accomplices in the crime), they need to take a look at themselves and ask, “What the heck is wrong with me?”  How could you sit by and let something like this happen to a 15-year-old girl!  What’s wrong with you!

It’s stories like these that make me begin to lose hope in humanity. When 4-7 people gang rape a girl, and 12 people sit around and watch, there’s something wrong with what’s going through our children’s heads.  I don’t know what, but something needs to be done.  Sitting by and watching something like this is unacceptable, and the people who watched this rape are should have to live with a whole lot of guilt for the rest of their lives.  I hope they realize how despicable it was for them to just sit by and watch.

And I hope the other attackers are caught and arrested.  My thoughts and prayers are with the victim of this attack – hopefully she recovers soon, but I have no doubt that she will be mentally scarred for years to come.

UPDATE: Somebody from Newsy, a video news website asked me to embed their story covering the gang rape:

more about “Newsy | Girl Gang Raped While Others …“, posted with vodpod 

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican

Obama Disagrees with the Ban on the Death Penalty for Child Rapists

June 25, 2008

Today, the Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty is an unconstitutional crime for child rapists.  Barack Obama came forward and said that although he normally disagrees with the death penalty, he disagrees with the Court’s ruling here.

Obama told reporters, “I have said repeatedly I think the death penalty should be applied in very narrow circumstances, for the most egregious of crimes.  I think that the rape of a small child, 6 or 8 years old, is a heinous crime, and if a state makes a decision that under narrow, limited, well defined circumstances, the death penalty is at least potentially applicable, that does not violate our Constitution.  Had the Supreme Court said, ‘We want to constrain the ability of states to do this, to make sure it’s done in a careful and appropriate way,’ that would have been one thing.  But it basically had a blanket prohibition.”

Again, this came as a surprise to me, since he has said before that the death penalty “does little to deter crime.”  He has, however, said that some crimes are “so beyond the pale [that] the ultimate punishment” is due.  Obama has been an advocate for preventing wrongful convictions and wrongful death sentences.  And I agree with him there – although I support the death penalty (ultimately, I’d just lock murderers up for life, but we don’t have prison room), we  need to make sure that we’re not killing up innocent people (or even sending innocent people to jail).

I do commend Obama for coming out against this ruling, since I’m sure that it’s going to make a lot of Democrats a little displeased with him.  I know that McCain opposes today’s ruling, but I’m going to try to find some quotes on it.

Done Ranting,

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Supreme Court Bans Dealth Penalty for Child Rape

June 25, 2008

Well, today the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, decided that the death penalty cannot be given as a punishment for raping a child (this had already been decided years ago for rape of an adult). Here are some excerpts from the case, Kennedy v. Louisiana, with my comments below:

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

Syllabus

KENNEDY v. LOUISIANA

CERTIORARI TO THE SUPREME COURT OF LOUISIANA

No. 07–343. Argued April 16, 2008—Decided June 25, 2008

Louisiana charged petitioner with the aggravated rape of his then-8-­year-old stepdaughter. He was convicted and sentenced to death un­der a state statute authorizing capital punishment for the rape of a child under 12. The State Supreme Court affirmed, rejecting peti­tioner’s reliance on Coker v. Georgia, 433 U. S. 584, which barred the use of the death penalty as punishment for the rape of an adult woman but left open the question which, if any, other non homicide crimes can be punished by death consistent with the Eighth Amend­ment. Reasoning that children are a class in need of special protec­tion, the state court held child rape to be unique in terms of the harm it inflicts upon the victim and society and concluded that, short of first-degree murder, there is no crime more deserving of death. The court acknowledged that petitioner would be the first person executed since the state law was amended to authorize the death penalty for child rape in 1995, and that Louisiana is in the minority of jurisdic­tions authorizing death for that crime. However, emphasizing that four more States had capitalized child rape since 1995 and at least eight others had authorized death for other non homicide crimes, as well as that, under Roper v. Simmons, 543 U. S. 551, and Atkins v. Virginia, 536 U. S. 304, it is the direction of change rather than the numerical count that is significant, the court held petitioner’s death sentence to be constitutional.

Held: The Eighth Amendment bars Louisiana from imposing the death penalty for the rape of a child where the crime did not result, and was not intended to result, in the victim’s death. Pp. 8–36.

1. The Amendment’s Cruel and Unusual Punishment Clause “draw[s] its meaning from the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society.” Trop v. Dulles, 356 U. S. 86, 101. The standard for extreme cruelty “itself remains the same, but its applicability must change as the basic mores of society change.” Furman v. Georgia, 408 U. S. 238, 382. Under the precept of justice that punishment is to be graduated and proportioned to the crime, informed by evolving standards, capital punishment must “be limited to those offenders who commit ‘a narrow category of the most serious crimes’ and whose extreme culpability makes them ‘the most deserving of execution.’ ” Roper, supra, at 568. Applying this princi­ple, the Court held in Roper and Atkins that the execution of juve­niles and mentally retarded persons violates the Eighth Amendment because the offender has a diminished personal responsibility for the crime. The Court also has found the death penalty disproportionate to the crime itself where the crime did not result, or was not intended to result, in the victim’s death. See, e.g., Coker, supra; Enmund v. Florida, 458 U. S. 782. In making its determination, the Court is guided by “objective indicia of society’s standards, as expressed in legislative enactments and state practice with respect to executions.” Roper, supra, at 563. Consensus is not dispositive, however. Whether the death penalty is disproportionate to the crime also de­pends on the standards elaborated by controlling precedents and on the Court’s own understanding and interpretation of the Eighth Amendment’s text, history, meaning, and purpose. Pp. 8–10.

2. A review of the authorities informed by contemporary norms, in­cluding the history of the death penalty for this and other non homi­cide crimes, current state statutes and new enactments, and the number of executions since 1964, demonstrates a national consensus against capital punishment for the crime of child rape. Pp. 11–23.

 

(a) The Court follows the approach of cases in which objective in­dicia of consensus demonstrated an opinion against the death penalty for juveniles, see Roper, supra, mentally retarded offenders, see At­kins, supra, and vicarious felony murderers, see Enmund, supra. Thirty-seven jurisdictions—36 States plus the Federal Government—currently impose capital punishment, but only six States authorize it for child rape. In 45 jurisdictions, by contrast, petitioner could not be executed for child rape of any kind. That number surpasses the 30 States in Atkins and Roper and the 42 in Enmund that prohibited the death penalty under the circumstances those cases considered. Pp. 11–15.

 

(b) Respondent’s argument that Coker’s general discussion con­trasting murder and rape, 433 U. S., at 598, has been interpreted too expansively, leading some States to conclude that Coker applies to child rape when in fact it does not, is unsound. Coker’s holding was narrower than some of its language read in isolation indicates. The Coker plurality framed the question as whether, “with respect to rape of an adult woman,” the death penalty is disproportionate punishment, id., at 592, and it repeated the phrase “adult woman” or “adult female” eight times in discussing the crime or the victim. The distinction between adult and child rape was not merely rhetorical; it was central to Coker’s reasoning, including its analysis of legislative consensus. See, e.g., id., at 595–596. There is little evidence to sup­port respondent’s contention that state legislatures have understood Coker to state a broad rule that covers minor victims, and state courts have uniformly concluded that Coker did not address that crime. Accordingly, the small number of States that have enactedthe death penalty for child rape is relevant to determining whether there is a consensus against capital punishment for the rape of a child. Pp. 15–20.

 

(c) A consistent direction of change in support of the death pen­alty for child rape might counterbalance an otherwise weak demon­stration of consensus, see, e.g., Atkins, 536 U. S., at 315, but no show­ing of consistent change has been made here. That five States may have had pending legislation authorizing death for child rape is not dispositive because it is not this Court’s practice, nor is it sound, to find contemporary norms based on legislation proposed but not yet enacted. Indeed, since the parties submitted their briefs, the legisla­tion in at least two of the five States has failed. Further, evidence that, in the last 13 years, six new death penalty statutes have been enacted, three in the last two years, is not as significant as the data in Atkins, where 18 States between 1986 and 2001 had enacted legis­lation prohibiting the execution of mentally retarded persons. See id., at 314–315. Respondent argues that this case is like Roper be­cause, there, only five States had shifted their positions between1989 and 2005, one less State than here. See 543 U. S., at 565. But the Roper Court emphasized that the slow pace of abolition was coun­terbalanced by the total number of States that had recognized the impropriety of executing juvenile offenders. See id., at 566–567. Here, the fact that only six States have made child rape a capital of­fense is not an indication of a trend or change in direction comparable to the one in Roper. The evidence bears a closer resemblance to that in Enmund, where the Court found a national consensus against death for vicarious felony murder despite eight jurisdictions having authorized it. See 458 U. S., at 789, 792. Pp. 20–22.

 

(d) Execution statistics also confirm that there is a social consen­sus against the death penalty for child rape. Nine States have per­mitted capital punishment for adult or child rape for some length of time between the Court’s 1972 Furman decision and today; yet no in­dividual has been executed for the rape of an adult or child since1964, and no execution for any other non homicide offense has been conducted since 1963. Louisiana is the only State since 1964 that has sentenced an individual to death for child rape, and petitioner and another man so sentenced are the only individuals now on death row in the United States for non homicide offenses. Pp. 22–23.

3. Informed by its own precedents and its understanding of the Constitution and the rights it secures, the Court concludes, in its in­dependent judgment, that the death penalty is not a proportional punishment for the crime of child rape. Pp. 23–35.

(a) The Court’s own judgment should be brought to bear on the death penalty’s acceptability under the Eighth Amendment. See, e.g., Coker, supra, at 597. Rape’s permanent and devastating impact on a child suggests moral grounds for questioning a rule barring capi­tal punishment simply because the crime did not result in the vic­tim’s death, but it does not follow that death is a proportionate pen­alty for child rape. The constitutional prohibition against excessive or cruel and unusual punishments mandates that punishment “be exercised within the limits of civilized standards.” Trop, 356 U. S., at 99–100. Evolving standards of decency counsel the Court to be most hesitant before allowing extension of the death penalty, especially where no life was taken in the commission of the crime. See, e.g., Coker, 433 U. S., at 597–598; Enmund, 458 U. S., at 797. Consistent with those evolving standards and the teachings of its precedents, the Court concludes that there is a distinction between intentional first-degree murder on the one hand and non homicide crimes against in­dividuals, even including child rape, on the other. The latter crimes may be devastating in their harm, as here, but “in terms of moral de­pravity and of the injury to the person and to the public,” they cannot compare to murder in their “severity and irrevocability,” id, at 598. The Court finds significant the substantial number of executions that would be allowed for child rape under respondent’s approach. Al­though narrowing aggravators might be used to ensure the death penalty’s restrained application in this context, as they are in the context of capital murder, all such standards have the potential to re­sult in some inconsistency of application. The Court, for example, has acknowledged that the requirement of general rules to ensure consistency of treatment, see, e.g., Godfrey v. Georgia, 446 U. S. 420, and the insistence that capital sentencing be individualized, see, e.g., Woodson v. North Carolina, 428 U. S. 280, have resulted in tension and imprecision. This approach might be sound with respect to capi­tal murder but it should not be introduced into the justice system where death has not occurred. The Court has spent more than 32years developing a foundational jurisprudence for capital murder to guide the States and juries in imposing the death penalty. Beginning the same process for crimes for which no one has been executed in more than 40 years would require experimentation in an area where a failed experiment would result in the execution of individuals un­deserving of death. Pp. 24–30.

(b) The Court’s decision is consistent with the justifications of­fered for the death penalty, retribution and deterrence, see, e.g., Gregg v. Georgia, 428 U. S. 153, 183. Among the factors for deter­mining whether retribution is served, the Court must look to whether the death penalty balances the wrong to the victim in non homicide cases. Cf. Roper, supra, at 571. It is not at all evident that the child rape victim’s hurt is lessened when the law permits the perpetrator’s death, given that capital cases require a long-term commitment by those testifying for the prosecution. Society’s desire to inflict death for child rape by enlisting the child victim to assist it over the course of years in asking for capital punishment forces a moral choice on the child, who is not of mature age to make that choice. There are also relevant systemic concerns in prosecuting child rape, including the documented problem of unreliable, induced, and even imagined child testimony, which creates a “special risk of wrongful execution” in some cases. Cf. Atkins, supra, at 321. As to deterrence, the evidence suggests that the death penalty may not result in more effective en­forcement, but may add to the risk of non reporting of child rape out of fear of negative consequences for the perpetrator, especially if he isa family member. And, by in effect making the punishment for child rape and murder equivalent, a State may remove a strong incentive for the rapist not to kill his victim. Pp. 30–35.

4. The concern that the Court’s holding will effectively block fur­ther development of a consensus favoring the death penalty for child rape overlooks the principle that the Eighth Amendment is defined by “the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society,” Trop, 356 U. S., at 101. Confirmed by the Court’s repeated, consistent rulings, this principle requires that resort to capital punishment be restrained, limited in its instances of applica­tion, and reserved for the worst of crimes, those that, in the case of crimes against individuals, take the victim’s life. P. 36.

957 So. 2d 757, reversed and remanded.

KENNEDY, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which STEVENS, SOUTER, GINSBURG, and BREYER, JJ., joined. ALITO, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which ROBERTS, C. J., and SCALIA and THOMAS, JJ., joined.

And here are some of the opinions:

Justisce Kennedy, issuing the opinion of the Court, with Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer joining.

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

No. 07–343

PATRICK KENNEDY, PETITIONER v. LOUISIANA

ON WRIT OF CERTIORARI TO THE SUPREME COURT OF LOUISIANA

[June 25, 2008]

JUSTICE KENNEDY delivered the opinion of the Court.

The National Government and, beyond it, the separate States are bound by the proscriptive mandates of the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, and all persons within those respective jurisdic­tions may invoke its protection. See Amdts. 8 and 14, §1; Robinson v. California, 370 U. S. 660 (1962). Patrick Kennedy, the petitioner here, seeks to set aside his death sentence under the Eighth Amendment. He was charged by the respondent, the State of Louisiana, with the aggra­vated rape of his then-8-year-old stepdaughter. After a jury trial petitioner was convicted and sentenced to death under a state statute authorizing capital punishment for the rape of a child under 12 years of age. See La. Stat. Ann. §14:42 (West 1997 and Supp. 1998). This case pre­sents the question whether the Constitution bars respon­dent from imposing the death penalty for the rape of a child where the crime did not result, and was not intended to result, in death of the victim. We hold the Eighth Amendment prohibits the death penalty for this offense. The Louisiana statute is unconstitutional.

V

Our determination that there is a consensus against the death penalty for child rape raises the question whether the Court’s own institutional position and its holding will have the effect of blocking further or later consensus in favor of the penalty from developing. The Court, it will be argued, by the act of addressing the constitutionality of the death penalty, intrudes upon the consensus-making process. By imposing a negative restraint, the argument runs, the Court makes it more difficult for consensus to change or emerge. The Court, according to the criticism, itself becomes enmeshed in the process, part judge and part the maker of that which it judges.

These concerns overlook the meaning and full substance of the established proposition that the Eighth Amendment is defined by “the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society.” Trop, 356 U. S., at 101 (plurality opinion). Confirmed by repeated, consistent rulings of this Court, this principle requires that use of the death penalty be restrained. The rule of evolving stan­dards of decency with specific marks on the way to full progress and mature judgment means that resort to the penalty must be reserved for the worst of crimes and limited in its instances of application. In most cases jus­tice is not better served by terminating the life of the perpetrator rather than confining him and preserving the possibility that he and the system will find ways to allow him to understand the enormity of his offense. Difficulties in administering the penalty to ensure against its arbi­trary and capricious application require adherence to a rule reserving its use, at this stage of evolving standards and in cases of crimes against individuals, for crimes that take the life of the victim.

The judgment of the Supreme Court of Louisiana up­holding the capital sentence is reversed. This case is remanded for further proceedings not inconsistent with this opinion.

It is so ordered.

 

Alito filed the dissenting opinion, with Roberts, Scalia, and Thomas joining:

 

 

 

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES 

No. 07–343

PATRICK KENNEDY, PETITIONER v. LOUISIANA

ON WRIT OF CERTIORARI TO THE SUPREME COURT OF LOUISIANA

[June 25, 2008]

JUSTICE ALITO, with whom THE CHIEF JUSTICE, JUSTICE SCALIA, and JUSTICE THOMAS join, dissenting.

The Court today holds that the Eighth Amendment categorically prohibits the imposition of the death penalty for the crime of raping a child. This is so, according to the Court, no matter how young the child, no matter how many times the child is raped, no matter how many chil­dren the perpetrator rapes, no matter how sadistic the crime, no matter how much physical or psychological trauma is inflicted, and no matter how heinous the perpe­trator’s prior criminal record may be. The Court provides two reasons for this sweeping conclusion: First, the Court claims to have identified “a national consensus” that the death penalty is never acceptable for the rape of a child; second, the Court concludes, based on its “independent judgment,” that imposing the death penalty for child rape is inconsistent with “‘the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society.’” Ante, at 8, 15, 16 (citation omitted). Because neither of these justifi­cations is sound, I respectfully dissent.

III

In summary, the Court holds that the Eighth Amend­ment categorically rules out the death penalty in even the most extreme cases of child rape even though: (1) This holding is not supported by the original meaning of the Eighth Amendment; (2) neither Coker nor any other prior precedent commands this result; (3) there are no reliable “objective indicia” of a “national consensus” in support of the Court’s position; (4) sustaining the constitutionality of the state law before us would not “extend” or “expand” the death penalty; (5) this Court has previously rejected the proposition that the Eighth Amendment is a one-way ratchet that prohibits legislatures from adopting new capital punishment statutes to meet new problems; (6) the worst child rapists exhibit the epitome of moral depravity; and (7) child rape inflicts grievous injury on victims and on society in general.

The party attacking the constitutionality of a state statute bears the “heavy burden” of establishing that the law is unconstitutional. Gregg, 428 U. S., at 175 (joint opinion of Stewart, Powell, and STEVENS, JJ.). That bur­den has not been discharged here, and I would therefore affirm the decision of the Louisiana Supreme Court.

The party attacking the constitutionality of a state statute bears the “heavy burden” of establishing that the law is unconstitutional. Gregg, 428 U. S., at 175 (joint opinion of Stewart, Powell, and STEVENS, JJ.). That bur­den has not been discharged here, and I would therefore affirm the decision of the Louisiana Supreme Court.

 

 

No. 07–343

PATRICK KENNEDY, PETITIONER v. LOUISIANA

ON WRIT OF CERTIORARI TO THE SUPREME COURT OF LOUISIANA

[June 25, 2008]

JUSTICE ALITO, with whom THE CHIEF JUSTICE, JUSTICE SCALIA, and JUSTICE THOMAS join, dissenting.

The Court today holds that the Eighth Amendment categorically prohibits the imposition of the death penalty for the crime of raping a child. This is so, according to the Court, no matter how young the child, no matter how many times the child is raped, no matter how many chil­dren the perpetrator rapes, no matter how sadistic the crime, no matter how much physical or psychological trauma is inflicted, and no matter how heinous the perpe­trator’s prior criminal record may be. The Court provides two reasons for this sweeping conclusion: First, the Court claims to have identified “a national consensus” that the death penalty is never acceptable for the rape of a child; second, the Court concludes, based on its “independent judgment,” that imposing the death penalty for child rape is inconsistent with “‘the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society.’” Ante, at 8, 15, 16 (citation omitted). Because neither of these justifi­cations is sound, I respectfully dissent.

III

In summary, the Court holds that the Eighth Amend­ment categorically rules out the death penalty in even the most extreme cases of child rape even though: (1) This holding is not supported by the original meaning of the Eighth Amendment; (2) neither Coker nor any other prior precedent commands this result; (3) there are no reliable “objective indicia” of a “national consensus” in support of the Court’s position; (4) sustaining the constitutionality of the state law before us would not “extend” or “expand” the death penalty; (5) this Court has previously rejected the proposition that the Eighth Amendment is a one-way ratchet that prohibits legislatures from adopting new capital punishment statutes to meet new problems; (6) the worst child rapists exhibit the epitome of moral depravity; and (7) child rape inflicts grievous injury on victims and on society in general.

The party attacking the constitutionality of a state statute bears the “heavy burden” of establishing that the law is unconstitutional. Gregg, 428 U. S., at 175 (joint opinion of Stewart, Powell, and STEVENS, JJ.). That bur­den has not been discharged here, and I would therefore affirm the decision of the Louisiana Supreme Court.

The party attacking the constitutionality of a state statute bears the “heavy burden” of establishing that the law is unconstitutional. Gregg, 428 U. S., at 175 (joint opinion of Stewart, Powell, and STEVENS, JJ.). That bur­den has not been discharged here, and I would therefore affirm the decision of the Louisiana Supreme Court.

 

 

 

So, there we have it – the Court goes easy on criminals again. Personally, I’d like to see the death penalty NEVER used, since this would be the worst punishment for criminals (but we should cut down on all the amenities of prisons – they’re getting a little too nice), but then we have prisons being overcrowded and prisoners are let go, so the next best thing is to be like Texas and fry everybody who deserves it. Honestly, this was probably less humane for the rapists, because they sure are going to get it in prison.

Done Ranting,

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Why Pro-Lifers Should Vote for John McCain: From a Pro-Life Prospective

May 8, 2008

I’ve just gotten done with what seems like my 500th debate with a pro-lifer who claims they won’t vote for McCain.  Now, I myself am extremely pro-life (no abortions, not even under circumstances of rape, incest, or mother’s life [except tubal pregnancies where it is impossible for the baby to survive], no embryonic stem cell research, etc…).  I would NOT vote for Rudy Giuliani, and I will vote for a pro-life Democrat over a pro-choice Republican.  Being pro-life has ALWAYS been important to me, since I was a little kid, and this election is no different.

Many pro-lifers say that McCain isn’t pro-life enough enough, especially when it comes to embryonic stem cells.  I’ll give them that – I am saddened that McCain supports experiments that have so far yielded ZERO productive results, but McCain is not an advocate of ESC research, McCain is an advocate of what works, and as it is shown more and more that adult SCs are yielding results, I think he will begin to oppose ESC research.

Now, McCain’s voting record.  I have heard the argument that his voting record is not pro-life enough.  I always respond, “Other than ESC research, show me one pro-choice thing he has voted for. [Silent pause] That’s because he hasn’t.”  In the 109th Congress, McCain had a 75% voting record from the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) and a 0% rating from the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL Pro-Choice America).  Meanwhile, Obama and Clinton have been rated 0% by the NRLC and 100% by NARAL.

The reason that a lot of pro-lifers are saying that they won’t vote for McCain is that “We need to turn the party around and teach Republicans a lesson that they can’t do this again.”  Well, I have a problem with that, and it’s called the Supreme Court.  The next President will nominate one Justice for sure (to replace John Paul Stevens), and most likely another (to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg).  Both of those justices are pro-choice.

If the pro-life religious right wants to teach the Republican Party a lesson, do NOT do it during a time when Roe v. Wade could be overturned.  2 pro-life Justices would change the Court from a 4-5 pro-life vote to a 6-3 pro-life vote.  If you ask me, teaching a lesson to a party should NOT be done at the expense of millions of helpless babies.

I recently heard Rocky Raczkowski (Michigan Representative who was planning on running for Senate until he got called back to serve in the Army), and he said, “If pro-life voters don’t vote for John McCain, shame on them,” and I agree.

Even if McCain appoints pro-choice judges, how is that any worse than what Clinton or Obama would do?  Why should we risk letting somebody that we KNOW for SURE will appoint pro-choice justices to the bench?  I would vote for McCain if there were only a 10% chance in him appointing somebody pro-life, over Clinton or Obama where that chance is 0.0000001% (you never know how the Justice will vote until they actually vote), but McCain himself has said he’ll appoint a pro-life person.  On other occasions, he’s said that he will appoint somebody like John Roberts or Samuel Alito, and that he would use the same people that Bush used to find Justices like that.

If you are pro-life, and you vote against John McCain / don’t vote, and Obama or Clinton (Obama will be the nominee) gets elected by a slim margin, the blood of those innocent babies will be on your conscience.

Now is not the time to send a message to the party.  Do that when millions of lives aren’t at stake.

(My apologies if any of this doesn’t make sense – I just got back from oral surgery and I’m on vicodin right now, so if something just doesn’t make any sense, leave a comment and I’ll revise it when I’m all with it.)

Done Ranting,

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3rd Graders Plot to Harm Teacher; Can’t Be Charged With a Crime

April 1, 2008

So I was just watching FOX News, and apparently in Waycross, Georgia, there were 9 3rd graders who plotted to kill their teacher.  The 8- and 9-year-olds from Center Elementary School plotted to kill their male teacher because he yelled at a girl for standing on her chair.

The plot was discovered when another girl saw a steak knife in a girl’s backpack and told teachers.  The girl was talked to and spilled the plot.  Each student had a roll to play in the plot, one of which was to clean up the blood.  All the students have been talked to and suspended.  Other parents are pushing for expulsion of the 9 students.

Although it’s not certain, I’d say that these kids would’ve tried to kill the teacher, not just injure him.

Now, here’s the insane part: under Georgia law, kids under 13 cannot be charged with a crime, so the most that could happen to them is expulsion and then spending time in a juvenile facility up until they’re 18.  So a 12-year-old can kill somebody and not be charged?  Like a 12-year-old doesn’t know that murder is wrong.

And here’s proof that the kids knew what they were doing was wrong: They HID the knives and other plot components (gloves, duct tape, hand cuffs, etc…) in their backpacks.  They didn’t just carry them in.  They didn’t BROADCAST their plot – they kept it SECRET.  They KNEW what they were doing is wrong.  If it were up to me, I’d never have had this law and would charge the kids with conspiracy to commit murder or conspiracy to commit assault with a deadly weapon.

What would the teacher have done if 9 of these kids ganged up on him?  Sure he could’ve taken on 1, 2, 3, or even 4 of them, but if NINE gang up on him, what’s he going to do?  Shoot them?  It’s not like he’d be allowed to have a gun in the classroom (although I’d say he should at least be allowed to have a TASER after this – especially if the kids are only suspended and not expelled).

These laws that protect children because they’re children are just plain stupid.  Once you reach the age of 8 or 9, there are certain things that you know not to do.  They know that murder and rape are wrong (and believe me – these kids know what sex is too – I remember last year 2 5th graders were caught having sex.  How can 5th graders even HAVE sex?  It’s nearly physically impossible).  Do they know that all things are wrong?  No – they probably don’t know anything about fraud or perjury, but they know basics like murder, assault, robbery, etc….

This law needs to be overturned so that when things like this happen in the future, kids can be punished (and these kids wouldn’t because you can’t pass an ex post facto law).

All I have to say is, this is one of the many reasons I’ll never be a teacher.  I know I’m going to take a lot of heat for this post, so let the hateful comments begin.

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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