1) Just do a quick Internet search and take a look at the mug shots of the “father,” step-“mother,” and “brother,” who (allegedly) tortured and starved a 15-year-old Wisconsin girl (I’ll help: http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/crime_and_courts/madison-man-and-wife-arrested-for-allegedly-torturing-starving-man/article_b0c5405e-5756-11e1-819b-001871e3ce6c.html). Now, does anyone really need a degree in forensic psychology to form a strong suspicion that these “people” have something disgustingly wrong with them? Sometimes the cover really does tell you a lot of what you need to know about the book. On the other hand, the parents of an Ohio boy who died in 2008 after they neglected to get him medical treatment for his Hodgkins lymphoma for over two years may not look quite as monstrous, but they deserve every second — and then some — of the eight-year prison sentences that they each received on Thursday!
2) Have you heard about the I.C.E. agent who shot and wounded his supervisor in California on Thursday, only to then be shot dead by one of his colleagues? Surprised? I’m really not. I’ve done numerous psych evals of law enforcement and military people, and while I generally find them to be fine, upstanding people, they can still have all of the same problems and propensities in their ranks as people in other occupations. That’s why risk assessments at the first indications of workplace violence problems can be life-saving, regardless of the industry (and perhaps even more so when a job involves being armed in the workplace all the time!).
3) The “underwear bomber” — you remember, the guy who tried to blow up a plane with explosives hidden in his underpants — has been sentenced to life in prison, no parole, good riddance.
4) Speaking of terrorism, in my opinion, a federal judge in Washington erred on Thursday in not issuing a requested restraining order against the Sea Shepherd environmentalist group to prevent the group’s American members from attempting to damage/disable Japanese whaling vessels in international waters. Don’t get me wrong, I just went whale watching in Hawaii last month, I think that whales are magnificent creatures, and I don’t like the thought of them being killed. However, if you’re against whaling, the civilized way to try to stop it is to participate in international law-making, not to engage in terroristic acts of vigilante-ism. If we tolerate our citizens committing violent acts, anywhere in the world, in opposition to whaling, then we lose a lot of credibility when we decry the citizens of other countries committing violent acts in opposition to, for example, capitalism, democracy, U.S. foreign policy, oil shipping, … .
Have a great weekend!