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Passions in Poetry

Anger in our Midst

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Phaedrus
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since 01-26-2002
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25 posted 03-10-2002 05:35 AM       View Profile for Phaedrus   Email Phaedrus   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Phaedrus


Speculation as to the reasons these events occurred as they did, without access to the facts, is always going to be just speculation. That’s why we have a Justice system, to weigh the facts and reach a verdict based upon them that is as close to the truth and as far away from speculation as possible.

Only when we have the clearest picture possible can we start to apportion blame; discuss contributing factors and investigate ways to stop this happening again. At that point the speculation becomes constructive as opposed to destructive which is a different animal entirely.

A point, which does strike me as odd and rather interesting, is the opening statement of this post:

“If someone posted a fictional account of this real-life story, I strongly suspect I would delete it. I know I wouldn't believe it, because the story is beyond belief. “


Why would you delete it Ron?
Brad
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since 08-20-99
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Jejudo, South Korea


26 posted 03-10-2002 07:30 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Hmmmm, maybe I'm wrong, Sharon, it's the right question to ask.

My fear is that there's a distancing factor here. Your words echoed something Foucault said. That around the beginning of the nineteenth century, we began to look for reasons for actions that simply had no reasons (He also gives a list of acts that are far worse than this.) I'm guilty of this as well (I don't understand the whole plagiarism thing for example), but I wonder if we try to rationalize the irrational in order to feel safer.

That it's not us but something other that motivates such horror.

Honestly, I think it's fairly easy to change the scenario and see this as similar to things we do everyday (Which doesn't make the act rational, it makes us irrational). It was also mentioned that her friends had urged her not to contact anybody -- isn't that believable?  "Law and Order" has done shows on similar actions and what about "I Know What You Did Last Summer"?

I find this situation far scarier:
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-000017526mar09.story?coll =la%2Dheadlines%2Dnation

from the text:

"Under pressure from a scandalized community, a Fort Worth judge ordered a nursing home aide back to jail Friday, charged with letting a homeless man bleed to death slowly in her garage."

Procedural law, free from the court of popular opinion, is really the only chance we have and yet so many seem to follow the commentators on Fox news in outrage without reflection.

I think this is an opportunity to look in a mirror.

Brad

[This message has been edited by Brad (03-10-2002 07:35 AM).]

Sunshine
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27 posted 03-10-2002 08:03 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine


One of the things I do in my job, Ron, is be open to both sides of the story.  However, and I will restate that part of the attorney's quote
quote:
"...this was simply a case of failure to stop and render aid."
[emphasis added] that set my blood to scalding...

If it is as was stated,
quote:
Chante Mallard allegedly told police she periodically went into the garage, apologizing to him but doing nothing to help.
then again and at this time, I cannot help but think that she was aware and knowledgable of the situation and just protecting herself.  Unfortunately for both the gentleman and herself, she repeated her same abuse of drink and drug use while at yet another party and disclosed this information in her "right to party".

I think if I were to ever be picked to sit on a jury, it best be over a land and/or water rights case, because surely, the papers and media won't get hold of that beforehand and sway my thinking [unless it were to be about the Louisiana Purchase...]

Still incensed?  Absolutely.  Still aware that our petty troubles are just that? Assuredly so....
Brad
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Jejudo, South Korea


28 posted 03-10-2002 09:33 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

But isn't that his job, Sunshine?

Obviously, it's not all the persuasive, but isn't he at least doing what he's supposed to?

Nan
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since 05-20-99
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29 posted 03-10-2002 09:40 AM       View Profile for Nan   Email Nan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nan's Home Page   View IP for Nan

"Understanding" this woman's motivations doesn't exonerate her.  It might allow for a smidgeon of empathy for some, but is there really any room for rationalizing her acts?

She was aware enough of her actions to relate them to others... She knew what she did was wrong... This is somewhat akin to a mother drowning her entire family in a bathtub and then calling the police... and pleading insanity using post-partum depression as her defense... um... yeah sure..

I have to agree that I wouldn't want to be on the jury here.. for either of these cases..

This woman did more than 'fail to render aid'... She hit the guy to begin with.  Does it matter whether he died instantaneously or some time later? Did he not die as a result of her actions?  Though she may initially have been charged with 'just' vehicular homicide - an accidental happenstance... Doesn't the complexion change when compounded with her 'gross' negligence to come to the aid of that victim?

Wouldn't a person be charged with first degree murder if they had another in captivity and that person were to die?  Wasn't he in captivity?  It seems that there may be no appropriate charges to suit this crime... It's a pretty darned unprecedented one, isn't it?

Phaedrus - Ron would delete it as being a verbal concoction of grievous harm against another... It's not what we're about here...

Ron - Um... Rum... for medicinal purposes??.. (You know how much I don't imbibe)...SBCYTFA..

[This message has been edited by Nan (03-10-2002 09:41 AM).]

Sunshine
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30 posted 03-10-2002 09:43 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine


To say that "all people are innocent until proven guilty"...yes, that is his job...

period.

I just didn't care for his choice of words.

Apparently this is rubbing me the wrong way.  I see so many good attorneys never getting credit for righting a wrong...and they understand that "it comes with the territory"...

never mind me folks, I'm going to get off this little box with soap in it and go take a shower....
Ron
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31 posted 03-10-2002 10:13 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Phaedrus, I would probably have been inclined to remove such a fictional account because I would have seen it as pure sensationalism. Immature writers often seek attention by "one-upmanship," trying to be grosser or more controversial than anyone else has been, and these forums were founded specifically to escape that behavior at another board. That this could happen in real life gives me slight pause, but probably doesn't change my mind about that kind of writing. Real life rarely makes good literature, and every rule needs an exception.

I think hush raises a valid point, but one not in the least limited to this story. Her point, rather, summarizes the history of war and violence. We always dehumanize the enemy. If we didn't, there could be no enemy.

I do think it's important to understand this women, and I don't mean just within the context of the Justice system. The courts will look at WHAT she did, with at best a cursory examination of WHY. As Brad suggested, perhaps there isn't always an answer to why. Certainly there can never be a conclusive answer. But I very honestly don't believe this story is all that complicated.

As others here have suggested, this is different from what most people do only in degree, not in kind. It is a horrifyingly extreme example of a very common situation.

When a little girl watches her mother comfort another child on the playground, not because she's in charge of the child, not because she even knows the child, but simply out of compassion, that small act sends a message to the little girl. Repeat the message over and over, then magnify it by several decades of maturity, and you just might end up with Mother Theresa.

When a little girl does something wrong and begs her mother, "Please don't tell Daddy," that little secret kept so harmlessly also sends a message. Repeat it, magnify it, and fear eventually becomes more important than responsibility. The grown woman need not do what is right as long as there's a chance she can hide what is wrong.

Human beings are enormously complex, and I don't mean to suggest otherwise. But I also think we're remarkably similar. The differences often arise only in where we draw the line between normal and excessive.  

And, to return to my original post, I think the same can be said about anger.
Sunshine
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32 posted 03-10-2002 10:40 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine


Obviously I've yet to visit the shower...

quote:
Human beings are enormously complex


And therein lies every juror's dilemma.  Sadly, we are not allowed to see all the complexities of any given situation.  We are only allowed the facts of the act at hand.

If we were allowed to see all of the complexities, as any good criminal defense attorney tries to bring out, would our jails have half of the capacity...?

As Ron has so well brought out, we are all so similiar in nature...

do we want to hold that very mirror up to ourselves?  Judge not, lest ye be judged...

how very difficult it is to sit, then, as the jury, judging...weighing...seeing inside the glass houses of our own moralities...

NOW I'm going to go take my shower...

again, Ron, my thanks to you for bringing this thread here, and putting more things into perspective....

Ron
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33 posted 03-10-2002 12:38 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

I've been called to jury duty three times in my life, Karilea. In each of those cases, I was repeatedly excused from serving. In every case where I was questioned, it was the prosecutor who excused me.

I think they're trying to tell me something?


wayoutwalt
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since 06-22-99
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34 posted 03-10-2002 03:09 PM       View Profile for wayoutwalt   Email wayoutwalt   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for wayoutwalt

Ft Worth, my home town yuh
Brad
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since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


35 posted 03-10-2002 04:21 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Interesting typo here:

"I do think it's important to understand this women"

My name is legion.

Ron
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36 posted 03-10-2002 04:31 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

What make you so sure it was a typo, Brad?

I'm sure Freud would have some interesting thoughts on where my thoughts were wondering …
Sunshine
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37 posted 03-10-2002 05:14 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine


LOL at Ron...I've been called four times...you'd think they knew me...or my background...and I'm still excused...by BOTH sides...ROTF....
Madame Chipmunk
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since 12-05-2001
Posts 8552
Michigan


38 posted 03-10-2002 06:01 PM       View Profile for Madame Chipmunk   Email Madame Chipmunk   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Madame Chipmunk's Home Page   View IP for Madame Chipmunk

That poor man...that poor woman

and I thought I had problems!

copyright2002 Lyra Nesius

"poetry is life distilled"  Gwendolyn Brooks

PoetryIsLife
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since 10-27-2001
Posts 4115
...in my boxers...


39 posted 03-11-2002 01:17 AM       View Profile for PoetryIsLife   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for PoetryIsLife

What can I say? It's a horrifying story.

After what I went through today ( ) I am not going to see things the same.

~ Titus

Will I ever forget what happened today?

Allysa
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In an upside-down garden


40 posted 03-11-2002 03:43 PM       View Profile for Allysa   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Allysa

Whoa.
Startime
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since 10-03-2000
Posts 6143
Canada


41 posted 03-14-2002 06:36 PM       View Profile for Startime   Email Startime   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Startime's Home Page   View IP for Startime

*sigh* I had to respond though I don't know what to say....
This world and it's growing lack of love and compassion scares me...what kind of heart does it take to allow such suffering....this story hurt my soul in ways that I cannot even begin to explain....
Ron...thank you for showing me another sight of reality...it makes me want to withdraw into my cancer shell and hide from a world insane and yet it makes me also want to contribute some real love and compassion to a world spinning into a darkness of the soul...
RosePetal
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42 posted 03-14-2002 09:15 PM       View Profile for RosePetal   Email RosePetal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for RosePetal

The bottom line is that a man died because of her, she LET him die, that is a fact.
My opinion is that she should have gotten more than five years for hiding the body, I understand she was probably scared out of her mind but she should have went about it differently.  
inot2B
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since 09-18-2000
Posts 2272
Alabama


43 posted 03-15-2002 08:32 PM       View Profile for inot2B   Email inot2B   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for inot2B

She left the man stuck in her car, to die. Coming in to say I'm sorry and then close the door to get on with her life. Sure she was afraid, but to let a man suffer like that. A nurses aide is suppose to help people. Would any of you out there want her to be the one to care for your loved ones? I can not feel sorry for her, I only feel bitter disgust. The man was homeless, would it of made it worse if he had somewhere to live. No one deserves to be treated like that. May God have mercy on her soul, cause I can't find any in my heart for her.
Bec
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since 02-23-2001
Posts 489
Sunshine Coast


44 posted 03-18-2002 09:27 PM       View Profile for Bec   Email Bec   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bec

This is the first I've heard of this story, and I'm absolutely shocked. I could almost feel the tears come to my eyes as I read it. I know the woman must have been afraid of what was going to happen, but how can someone justify going in to apologise for what happened, and then just leave? I mean, not even take him out of the windscreen? As inot2B said, a nurse's aide's job is to save people, not let them die. Accidents happen, I'm sure she didn't do it on purpose, and if he had survived, her punishment/jail term/fine would have been much less. She brought it upon herself as far as I can see.

Bec

"Poetry and Hums aren't things which you get, they're things which get you. And all you can do is to go where they can find you."
-Winnie-the-Pooh

Romy
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Plantation, Florida


45 posted 03-19-2002 10:07 AM       View Profile for Romy   Email Romy   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Romy

I don't want to understand what the woman must have been thinking at the time.  I don't care how afraid she might have been or how high she was.  She killed another human being and all I can think about is what the victim might have been thinking.  It hurts me that he was already living a difficult life.  That he died a death that none of us could imagine for ourselves.  Already homeless, what comfort did he draw from his memories in his last breath?  How terrified he must have been.  How sad, when he realized that no help would be given to the likes of him. Left to die in a stranger's garage like a roadside animal.  Was he hungry or thirsty? How would it feel to die while another human watched nearby, offering nothing more than an apology for causing the death?  

Where is my God?
 
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