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Posts Tagged ‘criminals’

        Today is a life affirming day of recognition….it is the Sanctity of Life Sunday…a day when most churches and individuals choose to celebrate life and inspire individuals to cherish & protect it.  Many churches concentrate on the issue of teaching that abortion violates the sanctity of life (I happen to agree)… however, there are many, equally important ways to honor and celebrate life.

        While abortion is a horror to me and i think it should be repellant to all human beings; that issues comes up at the very beginning of life.  There are other circumstances that need to be addressed as well. 

          There are issues such as injury, illness and those who fight for the right to commit suicide.  Life is precious at all stages.  Should we turn a blind eye to those who would turn out the light of another human being simply because they are infirmed, disabled, impaired, terminally ill or have no desire to live another moment?

            For those who truly believe in the sanctity of life…it gets a bit stickier for some when you enter into the idea of criminals who commit heinous crimes; and, the criminal justice system offers up the death penalty or death row for certain individuals who have been convicted of crimes that can dish out the death penalty as punnishment. 

        For me that is a bit trickier –i have not sorted out the boundaries of my beliefs on that.  Criminals who commit the most horrible, vile crimes….it is a struggle in my heart to remind myself that God says, “Vengence is mine sayeth the Lord”.  But, if that verse is applied strictly…then…punnishment will come later from God (in the meantime…life in prison without parole is the only recourse to prevent further tragedy).  

          On the other hand, there are scriptures that also talk about an eye for an eye…and if a man take a life he must also forfeit his.  So…this part of the sanctity of life, i am still working out in my mind and heart.  Until i have studied the issues more closely..i am going to err on the side of; Life is precious and must be protected…at the beginning of life, in the early part of life, in middle age, in the elder years and in all stages in between.

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        Here is another brilliant crime story.  A package was delivered to the wrong person and it contained 200 lbs of marijuana; sent from Florida to Baltimore.  The police got involved and posed as Fed Ex employees and delivered the package to the person that the package was addressed to.  Fed Ex really delivers…but, can you imagine being the one who it was mistakenly delivered to?  Yikes!!!  I imagine they viewed it as if they were playing a game of hot potatoe…get rid of it as fast as you can by calling the police!

        The 30 year old  receiver of the package was arrested and is being charged with possesion of a dangerous substance.  The police also discovered 8 other boxes containing around 400 additional lbs of the marijuana.  What a dope…hope they find out who the sender was as well!

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        Here is a concept that many vehicle makers have been pursuing for a while now…making your vehicle a hot spot wireless connected tool.  Chrysler will give a peek at their UConnectWeb system tomorrow…it may become available next year.  Of course, like everything else having to do with technology…there is a huge push to be the first to have the most cutting edge program or system available, that the masses can’t live without.  (more…)

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        Guantanamo Bay or Gitmo, as it is often referred to, has been infamous since it was turned into a detention center for suspected terrorists.   Those who have been detained there have been allegedly branded as enemy combatants to the United States.   Now there are questions regarding the standard operating procedures; have they been trashed to get confessions?

           Some people feel that the rights of the detainees have been violated since the Bush administration stated that the Geneva Conventions protection did not have to be provided to the prisoners.  The US Supreme court disagreed with the Bush administration and future prisoners will NOW be afforded those protections.  The question is, what happens to those already in custody?  Those in custody have to prepare some kind of defense if they hope to get released. 

         In the meantime, much concern has been raised about those in legal limbo in the detention center. There are some detainees who could be released if the US could find countries willing to take them.   After all, what country is going to want to take in someone who has been accused of terrorism, whether it was proven or not?   Some detainees have already been released; but, many are still awaiting trial. 

            Questions have been raised about some of the interrogation techniques used to get confessions.  Were the confessions legitimate; or, were they obtained because of abusive or harsh treatment during questioning?  What if a person truly was guilty of the charges…but, the evidence was gotten because of hard interrogation techniques…is that acceptable; after all, some of the crimes alleged are pretty horrific?  Or, as a “civilized nation” are we bound to provide “humane” conditions; do the ends justify the means?

        Lawyers charged with providing legal representation for their clients are alledging that a standard operating procedures manual from the Pentagon had instructions to “destroy or trash” hand written notes or documents from the interrogations; in case the interrogators were called to testify, regarding harsh treatment of those kept in the detention center.  The lawyers claim that not having those handwritten notes makes representing their clients difficult because it is hard to prove that their “client’s confessions” were gotten in an intimidating way or through an abuse of power.

       If evidence has been suppressed by the government…that carries serious legal consequences for anyone in this situation.  While terrorism is a huge concern and we all want those involved in it to be apprehended…we have to examine the limits to the methods that we allow interrogators to use to get that information. 

          Detainees proven to be guilty, without a shadow of doubt, of alleged terrorist activities should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  That is why it is so very important about the way the information is gathered….we wouldn’t want a true terrorist to get away with it legally, because of an illegal method of gathering that evidence.

           Where should the line be drawn between the war on terrorism and humane treatment of suspected criminals?  Or should we have limits at all?  If we don’t have limits…how do we discern the difference between ourselves and those considered to be terrorists?   What about national security; what if releasing some of that information jeparodizes the safety of American citizens?  These are not simple questions, nor are the answers easy to come up with.  What do you think?

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         I was reading a news story today about a disturbing situation in South Carolina; two videos surfaced that showed officers chasing suspects with their police cars and “bumping them”  in two seperate incidents.  What about safety?

        The officers were white, the news report stated; and the suspects black.  Now, personally, i don’t think that ANY police officer white or black  should be “bumping” any suspect, white or black!  Yes, i understand that the “suspects” are exactly that…”suspected criminals” . 

        However, when they are suspects…they haven’t yet, been convicted of anything…and also, i feel that it is dangerous for the suspects, the officers, as well as the general public to be chasing and “bumping” people. 

           Obviously, what happens if the suspect gets rolled under the vehicle and gets serious hurt or killed?  Then, the suspect is not only injured or killed, but, the officer will have to go through an investigation; it will cause him or her, to possibly not only loose their job; but, also could send them to prison for manslaughter.  

            The situation could allow whatever community the officer represents to be rightfully sued, costing tax payers not only money; but, also fan the flames of another huge racial conflict.  We need to work on identifying and healing racial divisions not  creating new reasons to deepen the wounds in our communities.

          No, i just think it is wrong to allow these types of situations to occur without challenging them legally.  Yes, if someone is doing something illegal they deserve to, not only be arrested; but, also convicted.  

           The two officers who are on the video tapes have set an awful precedent by “bumping” their suspects.  Not to mention, at least one other incident of another officer, in a different situation allegedly shouting out racial slurs about a suspect in South Carolina.  This is definately something that should never be allowed. 

           Human beings are to be treated with respect by people we entrust to represent us in law enforcement.  The federal investigation that could come out of this situation is needed; not only in one state, but in all 50 states and we need to set a standard in how things are to be handled.

        I respect officers and most of them do a wonderful job; they have a passion and a commitment to uphold the law.  They have very difficult jobs.  We need to recognize the good officers and hold them up as an example to follow.  Upright and honest citizens can help officers to do their jobs better by setting standards that weed out the officers that abuse their power.  

            Officers are out there every day risking their lives to uphold the law; and truthfully, often they see the worst our nation has to offer in regards to human behavior.   It must be difficult to keep a positive view point of humanity when you constantly see the horrible things that people do to one another. 

           Lift up and encourage officers that you know in your neighborhood, your family, your churches, your schools, and even on the street corners.  It is one of those jobs that gets very few thank yous.  I am sure that they dis-like the bad officers as much as we do because it makes their jobs more difficult.

             We need to teach our children once again to respect authority in the home, in our schools, and in our communities and in law enforcement.  To  accomplish this, we must act responcibly and respectfully even when dealing with the criminal elements in our society.  We want our children to respect officers, not fear them. 

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