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From the monthly archives: "March 2014"
Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 & Darion Marcus Aguilar

Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 & Darion Marcus Aguilar

Two stories, both of them front page, juxtaposed in my mind this morning as I was reading the newspapers. A Washington Post headline announced, “Mall Shooter Obsessed with Columbine Attack, Police Say. ” The New York Times proclaimed, “Theories Grow Without Facts on Lost Flights.”

Both articles concerned subjects of key interest to this column and this website – violent crime and international security – yet would seem to have little to do with each other.

But in the most important sense, they most certainly do.

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Children & Domestic Violence

Children & Domestic Violence

In November 2008, Clifton Bernard Curtis, 33, was arrested for attempting to murder his wife of three years, Erin, also 33, in her Calvert County, Maryland home. He stabbed and sliced her with a kitchen knife 27 times, and the only reason she lived is that her terrified nine-year-old son had the courage and presence of mind to call 911.

Curtis was convicted and has been in prison ever since. But this coming November, he will be up for parole, having served half of his 12-year sentence. And that’s where this part of the story begins.

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Cameron Todd Willingham

Cameron Todd Willingham

In Law & Disorder, we chronicled the story of Cameron Todd Willingham, who was executed in Texas in 2004 for the arson murder of his three young daughters in Corsicana, Texas in 1991.

Willingham, known as Todd, seemed like a pretty reprehensible character. Not only did he kill his children in a painful and cowardly way, he also may have abused his wife Stacy, and drank and ran around. Governor Rick Perry publicly proclaimed him “a monster.”

The only problem is, Todd didn’t commit the crime. In fact, no one committed the crime, because there was no crime. And last week, the story got even worse.

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Firearm Look-Alike

“Firearm Look-Alike”

As much as we support law and order, we’ve always believed that the one-size-fits-all approach of Zero Tolerance makes no sense. But now it’s being carried to really dumb extremes.

Consider, if you will, the case of Nathan Entingh, a ten-year-old fifth grader in the Columbus, Ohio, school system. He was suspended for making a gun shape with his fingers in science class, pointing them at a friend and saying, “Boom.”

Come on, folks! When are we going to stop being stupid about things like this?

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George State Representative Sam Moore

Georgia State Representative Sam Moore

This past Saturday, newly elected Georgia Republican State Representative Sam Moore gathered at the Simply Southern Restaurant in Cherokee County to apologize to about 60 constituents for his first act as a legislator:

He had introduced a bill to allow registered sex offenders to hang around anywhere they wanted to, including schools.

“I want to hopefully put aside some of your fears that I’m some hot head that goes running around and doing things,” Moore told his followers. “One of my goals today is to say, ‘Look I’m not as bad as I have been made out to be’.”

Not as bad? Maybe. Not as stupid? We’ll have to reserve judgment.

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