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Old 01-26-2005, 12:28 PM   #28
Registered Member
Iron Throne Cult

Join Date: August 27, 2004
Location: North Carolina
Age: 55
Posts: 4,888
An interestng discussion so far, sparked by a heinous act. There have been several good points from many different members. There have also been some points I simply don't agree with.

Heiro - I don't agree with your "strong DO bully the weak" theory. Or that our laws and morality are imposed by the strong onto the weak. Our laws (at least in America) are designed to help protect the weak - regardless of their social station in life. And as our recent election showed, most of our morals were decided by the majority of members in a given settlement, village, town, city or state. But our Constitution was designed to make sure that the strong would NEVER be able to completely dominate or control the weak. Nor would we be able to legally "beat them back down" to their proper station.
Just as an example, the majority of Americans do not agree with homosexual lifestyles. These feelings are stronger and more concentrated in certain areas, but the overall disagreement with the lifestyle in general is pretty widespread. DESPITE this general disagreement from John Q. Public, Gay Right activists and organizations have been able to a lot of victories in regards to their general and civil rights. The playing field still isn't equal, by any means, but that particular minority segment of the American population has been able to make many advances. The same is true for the Civil Rights Movement of the '60's. Blacks have gone from being slaves to having most of the same opportunity to become successful as anybody else. Yes, racism still exists. It will never be eliminated completely. But it is definitely much less predominant than it used to be. Both of these groups have gained significantly over the last 50 years, sometimes against incredible odds. Back in the 50's, many whites agreed with your theory that blacks should be "reminded" of their proper station in life. That isn't the case anymore - thanks to our Constitution and laws that were passed to grant them the rights they deserved.

As for the reaction of most members (including yourself) as to what they would do to these kids if they had caught them, I DO agree with you that one reason for that reaction is because kittens ARE "fuzzy wuzzy cute widdle animals". To be perfectly honost, I seriously doubt there would be NEARLY as much "outrage" if these boys had been torturing rats or spiders instead of kittens. But we also want to punish these kids because they attacked an animal that was defenseless and didn't even understand why it was being attacked, much less being able to protect itself. So the "strong" actually want to rise up in defense of the totally weak and helpless. If these boys want to hurt something, we want to be the ones to say "How about trying to hurt something that can actually fight back?" This is also the reason some people admit they wouldn't be as upset if this had happened to another person. Because regardless of that person's situaton, we still think on some level that they could understand what was happening and at least have a chance to fight back. It still doesn't justify the attack, but it does make it "less heinous" in our minds because they attacked a person or animal that was capable of fighting back. I also daresay that many of us wouldn't mind at all to give these boys some petrol and matches and lock them in a cage with a hungry pit bull. "There you go boys. You want to burn an animal, here's one for ya." The difference in our reaction lies in the perceived ability of the animal to defend itself against the attack."

On a personal level, my gut reaction is the same as most other members here. A part of me would like to pour petrol on the boys and set them alight. But I will be happy enough for these punks to lose two years of their life in prison. It won't change thier anti-social tendencies. In fact, it might well endorse and enhance them. But these boys are obviously disturbed to begin with. One of the early warning signs of serial killers is a history of cruelty to animals.

I also agree, Heiro, that these boys felt "empowered" by the torture and pain they inflicted. You're probably dead-on about them having social factors that make THEM feel helpless and powerless, and this is their way of striking back and finding a way to feel "good" about themselves again. It is a way to say "I'm NOT helpless". And as they grow older, these actions might well be taken out on other humans to increase their feeling of power - since they ARE now targeting creatures that "could" fight back.

To be perfectly honost, I don't know that ANY amount of psychological counseling would ever be sufficient to overcome their history and to enable them to feel good about themselves without inflicting pain, suffering and death on others.

As for the members endorsing "vigilante reactions", I certainly understand where you're coming from. I admit that if I actually saw the attack happen, I would want to run up and "beat the crap" out of the boys too. But - even though I AM an animal lover (and a cat lover in particular) - I doubt I could ever bring myself to actually want to kill another person for harming a cat (or any other animal). Ziroc, I definitely understand your feelings regarding Choc. I've had several pets during my life and my wife had a cat that she was every bit attached to as you are Choc. Still, I don't think I could have been willing to kill somebody for harming the cat. Beat the hell outta of them and then make sure they go to jail, yeah, but not kill.

My kids, on the other hand, are a completely different story. When my middle son was only two years old, I took him to a McDonald's playground one day. Two older boys (around 10-12yrs old) trapped him on the playground and would not let him off. When I called to my son and he tried to come to me, the boy closest to him tried to kick him in the face!!! All I can say is that God had mercy on him, because if he HAD of actually kicked my son, I WOULD have beat the ever-lovin hell outta him right then and there. As it was, I dove into the playground on top of both these boys and jerked them away from my son. I then cussed them out for everything they were worth and told them what would happen if they laid a finger on my son. They mocked me at first, but I think I finally got the message throught to them that I wasn't joking and I literally meant every single word I was saying. That was just a minor threat (in reality) to my boys. If someone every actually DID harm them...then I definitely would have no problem hunting them down and shooting them like a rabid dog.

We all have the capacity to defend the ones we love with violence - and sometimes with excessive violence. Most of the time, this level of "parental protection" applies to our kids and parents (and maybe a few other members of our immediate family). But those that don't have children often feel that same level of parental protection for their pets - because their pets ARE their "children". And woe be to anyone that would be stupid enough to harm our "kids".
Cerek the Calmth
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