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Old 01-31-2002, 07:56 PM   #1
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Personal liberties or big brother?

Two nights ago a young man of 16 who used to go to my high school (but got kicked out and was attending the drop out school [GED equivalent]) strangled his 13 year old sister to death. His parents were out of town when this happened. Their aunt was to be taking care of them but had gone somewhere. When she came home, she found her niece in the shed out back dead and her nephew was not to be found. The police caught him at a friend's house and arrested him on breaking curfew. He now admits to doing it but says it was accidental, that they were wrestling and it just got out of control. Our police chief said it was the most disturbing case he had ever seen.

The boy is being tried as an adult and if convicted will get life in prison with a chance at parol in 30 years. He had apparently told many people about killing his family. He said he had to kill his siter first because she came home first. After killing her, he picked her body up and put it in the shed in a sleeping bag and made it seem as though she was sleeping (which is apparently normal behavior for people who kill in the moment). On top of telling people he was going to do it, there were other tell-tale signs of mental distress. He was kicked out of a Catholic school in kindergarden for killing the class hamsters. Friends say that he was always a little bit violent and "weird". After Columbine and other school tragedies, shouldn't we have noticed this and treated it? Or is it impossible to say "this kid talks about killing his family, take him into custody," and the like. Where do we cross the line of personal freedoms and say that a certain behavior is too odd for our society? Should we moniter kids so closely that they feel it? Ok, your turn.

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Old 01-31-2002, 08:50 PM   #2
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Wow, that is quite frightening, and to have something as strange as that happen so close to you really brings what you hear on TV and radio into reality. As for me, I definitely don't think that a "Big Brother" system should be implemented, as many kids always talk about blowing up schools or something, and only mean it in a joking manner. However, after events of a few years ago, I think much of that talk has been greatly reduced, because people understand that what they say might not always be taken in the context in which the person means to say it. I think in this case, the people whom the boy spoke to of killing his family, since you mentioned that he had had problems in the past, should have reported these statements to some authority, if not the police, then definitely the authorities of the school. People should be aware of their surroundings, because in cases like this, they might be able to prevent a tragedy.
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Old 01-31-2002, 11:00 PM   #3
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It's not a question of personal liberties versus big brother. It's a question of mental health versus chaos.
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Old 01-31-2002, 11:24 PM   #4
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Homeowners are perfectly able to put cameras and such in their own house to monitor their childrens activities, and could likely do so somewhat easily without being found out. I think a wide-scale big brother type system is not only a breach on everyones privacy, but is also not feasible. You have a camera, on every street, in every room of every house, every office building... Who exactly is going to monitor all that at once? I dont think so... But if people are concerned about their childrens actions, they should do it themselves. If the concern is just the general population, there are neighbourhood watch programs, and thats about as far as it can go. Everyone is entitled to their privacy, and some things should not be violated/viewed in any way. Thats my 2 cents.
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Old 02-05-2002, 01:39 AM   #5
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just call who up and report it? when you call the police, or a school, and say you think someone might be dangerous, you know what you get? you get police who discount everything you say, and reply that "well it's your word against theirs." they told us to tape record this person, and get him on video tape. So you have to buy little video cameras and hide them, and put a recorder on you, and even then they said "well if they don't specifically threaten someone we can't do anything." so forget it. it means we all better take care of ourselves, somehow. remember most police and school people are not that bright, or educated that well, and like politicians try to pass the buck.
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Old 02-05-2002, 02:53 AM   #6
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What is it on this forum these days about calling people "not too bright". That's simply not true, U2live. Other than that, I agree with your post. Getting for instance a restraining order seems to be almost impossible before it's too late.
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Old 02-05-2002, 10:36 AM   #7
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I think if someone is in serious danger, bugger privacy. We are talking aout potential murder aren't we? The only problem exists in trying to sort the loonies from the serious threats.
Say to the parents of a murdered child "Im sorry we couldn't do anything about X, it would have been an invasion of privacy to keep a closer eye on them".

I understand the opposing viewpoint. But its like people here in Sydney complaining about increased traffic cameras and speeding fines. Its so simple, dont speed and you will be fine. Same thing here dont intend to kill anyone and you will also be allowed your privacy.

In reality, we wont ever be under 24 hour surveillance. Like someone already said, who will monitor this?
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Old 02-05-2002, 11:59 AM   #8
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Quote:
I think if someone is in serious danger, bugger privacy.
Determining if someone is in danger is a problem.

Determining what level of danger is dangerous enough is a problem.

There are all sorts of possibilities of bad things happening. You can spy on everyone who might commit a crime in the future.

Quote:
I understand the opposing viewpoint. But its like people here in Sydney complaining about increased traffic cameras and speeding fines. Its so simple, dont speed and you will be fine.
That's what they said in Tampa Florida when they installed cameras and facial recognition software. People were being detained by the police because the cameras thought they were wanted criminals.

And governments have shown their willingess to spy on their own people - even if they are not suspected of a crime, for political gain. There is simply too much room for abuse.

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Same thing here dont intend to kill anyone and you will also be allowed your privacy.
It is not as easy as that, by any means.

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In reality, we wont ever be under 24 hour surveillance
Wrong.

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Like someone already said, who will monitor this?
As I mentioned above, automated systems have already been implemented.
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Old 02-05-2002, 09:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by DebbieSG:
It's not a question of personal liberties versus big brother. It's a question of mental health versus chaos.
Very true.
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