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Thursday, March 06, 2008

Draw the Line

I recall when this case first came up, and it still nauseates me. This has to be the worst case of Stockholm syndrome ever:

A San Jose woman who watched as her boyfriend allegedly beat and stomped her 6-year-old son to death was sentenced today to a year in county jail after the defense argued she had been forced into submission by months of physical and emotional abuse.



So that's the going rate now for watching your psycho asshole boyfriend stomp your kid to death, then driving with all the way to Phoenix (at least a full day's drive from San Jose) to plant the kid. One year. Of course, if she has half a soul remaining, she'll be haunted by the image of poor Oscar Jr. looking at her, waiting for help that never came. Live with it the rest of your sorry life, bitch.

I dunno. I keep hearing how overcrowded the prisons and the planet are. Given the encroaching powers of the state to begin with, I honestly fail to understand why Corona should not be executed (since, let's be honest, trying to rehabilitate a person who stomps a six-year-old kid to death is a waste of everyone's time) and Jimenez not be sterilized (since an idiot who stays with a person such as Corona, even after he murdered her son right in front of her, is the very definition of an unfit parent).

Seriously. Why the hell not, just in utilitarian terms? Why do we keep trying to find "humane" ways to work around the inhumanity of killers and morons, only to find out again and again that no good deed goes unpunished?

7 comments:

ThePoliticalCat said...

I dunno, dude. I prefer the idea of mandatory (reversible) sterilization for all prepubertal sprog. Reverse the doohickeys when they've shown that they're past their drinking, drugging, wild-oats-sowing, kid-stomping days. Solve the population problem and this bestial cruelty problem at one go.

Shit, did I say bestial? No beast does this. Even lions, killing another lion's young to bring the lionesses into estrus, deliver death with a merciful quick breaking of the neck.

woodguy said...

If the prisons weren't filled with people who are given hard time for getting caught with a joint in their sock we might have enough room to keep people who really ARE a danger to society locked up.

Heywood J. said...

TPC:

It doesn't even have to be a mandatory dystopian cliché. Attach it to incentives or disincentives; if you want people to avoid procreating right out of high school, give 'em a scholarship and some Norplant. If they're criminals, give 'em a choice between the standard sentence for the crime, or a drastically reduced sentence and a vasectomy/tubal ligation.

We're just perpetuating this syndrome, churning a burgeoning underclass with no way out, in some perverted notion of "choice", but nobody involved has much real "choice" in the matter. People just get locked into behavioral patterns, children suffer, and taxpayers get milked in a variety of ways.

I'm being somewhat polemic, and I certainly don't have absolute faith that a bureaucracy that can't take a competent driver's license photo can handle every contingency. But it seems that people agree that certain issues are at crisis level, and crisis calls for triage, not this mollycoddling horseshit that we shouldn't steer some retard drug addict away from squeezing out a litter of wards o' the state, or ensure punitively that people who commit extreme crimes against children never get another opportunity to do so.

Heywood J. said...

woodguy:

Absolutely agree. Pot should have been legalized long ago, and users of harder drugs, if those drugs are not going to be legalized, should at least be steered into their own facilities. I have never understood how people expect to throw some tweaker into gladiator school, and not have him come out a hardcore recidivist with nothing to lose. Drug policy in this country is insane, outdone only by Islamic shitholes like Malaysia and Saudi Arabia.

r@d@r said...

yeah, some guy stomps a kid to death, and our conclusion is we haven't punished the mother enough. and we should sterilize those dumb bitches.

i realize you probably didn't mean it that way, but there's a note of this in there i find troubling.

i get the feeling a guy who is capable of stomping a 6 year old to death has other stuff on his record already, so there is that issue.

and when it boils down to it, although it might indicate i'm just some kind of dirty socialist wimp for saying it, this whole story represents a failure of the extended family, neighbors, and community in general to give a shit about a six year old kid. none of this kind of thing happens straight out of the blue - it's part of a pattern that plenty of people saw and did nothing about. we can satisfy ourselves with revenge fantasies after the fact all we want, but what are any of us doing FOR the kids on our street BEFORE they get stomped to death?

Heywood J. said...

Point by point:

1. I don't think she should have been automatically, mandatorily sterilized. I think one year in jail with time served is an incredibly light sentence for what she did. Seven to ten seems more appropriate, in which case an alternate choice of, say, sterilization and five years of probation could be offered.

But yes, she's a dumb, heartless bitch and should not be a parent. I'm not sure where we got the notion that everyone is entitled to abuse or neglect their kids just because they have the ability to procreate.

2. The notion that "the community" bears some -- any -- responsibility for this is nightmarish. I understand completely that abused women have limited access to viable options, and I understand that their mentality changes under conditions of ongoing abuse.

3. It would be helpful to know more about the extended families and the neighborhood, but there is something to your point, that sometimes people mind their own business to the detriment of others. And I don't know what else is on Corona's record, but you're right about that as well, but because of overcrowding, they don't usually three-strike people unless they have to.

Still, especially in the Bay Area, there are many public and private options available. She could have anonymously reported herself to CPS, so they'd get the kid out of there. Hell, all else fails, she could have just ceded custody to Oscar's father. You know, there are plenty of community agencies, but they can't wipe these morons' asses for them.


Instead, after months of abuse, she stood and watched this motherless fuck stomp her child to death, then drove with him 700 miles to another state to bury the kid under a backyard concrete slab. And stayed with him there.

"The community" has very little to do with all that, except yeah, maybe someone should intervene before these idiots do it again. It'd be nice to pre-cog it, but failing that, maybe meaningful steps to prevent future occurrences have to suffice. I don't see what's meaningful about what's taken place; hell, for all we know, she stays with Corona and gets knocked up by him again on a conjugal visit.


I know what you're saying about revenge fantasies, and I found some of the reader comments appended to the article troubling. They want the guy to stomped or raped to death in prison, or whatever. I'm much more dispassionate about the means, because again, I'm talking on utilitarian grounds. I don't care if that happens to him, mind you, but I'd just as soon the state gives him a nice sleepy-time injection and moves on.

If we accept the given that a person who does such a thing is irredeemable, cannot be rehabilitated, should not be released, then why warehouse him? Why not just end the fucker, lessen the overcrowding of nothing-to-losers by one? So we can feel more "humane", while he victimizes other prisoners and guards, since has nothing else to do? It's not like he's going to see the light and start giving back to the community with a series of inspirational macramés and clown paintings.


Sorry if it seems like I'm beating on you here; I actually appreciate the thoughtful rebuttal. But I think we have conditioned ourselves to respond to these cases by working around the core problems, instead of just dealing with them directly. These people have abdicated their right to a second chance, pure and simple.

Kimberly said...

I concur with the first poster - everyone, from the time they hit whatever certain age, should be made not able to have kids either until they can go to an office of some sort, prove they have the means to support a child, then remove or reverse whatever was done for free. Then do it again to whoever has a kid, until they can prove they can handle a second one, and so on.

I mean, seriously, how many problems would we solve this way? no unwanted children, fewer children get abused because fuck-ups won't be allowed to have any, etc.

Yeah, I do live in a dream world.. oh well.