The Arkanssouri Blog.: Erma Harris: Violent Criminals Deserve Honors Too!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Erma Harris: Violent Criminals Deserve Honors Too!

Erma thinks she has really told off those of us who don't think it's appropriate to close school for the day and allow the school to be used for the funeral of a violent criminal.

She begins by pointing out the violent criminal was not yet an adult:


17 – not old enough to buy alcohol or cigarettes. 17 – not old enough to vote. 17 – only old enough to drive a vehicle for a full year. 17 – four more years until a person is considered a real adult in every sense of the word. 17 – a very young age to die.


She must have forgotten "17 - old enough to get into an NC-17 movie" and "17 - much older than the Jonesboro shooters" and "17 - about the same age as Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold."

The peppers the story with irrelevant, hyperemotional rhetorical questions. "Can you imagine the fear . . .? Can you imagine the pain . . .?"

I let reason, not imagination, guide me, Erma. Do you KNOW how irrational you sound? Can't you SEE that schools are for teaching children, not honoring violent criminals?

Then she sets up a straw man to scold those of us who demand accountability from the Mammoth Spring school system.


The funeral was held at the school for only one reason, because his family asked to have it there. School was closed on Friday to allow the services to take place and to allow teachers and students who knew Jesse and his family to attend. This request was granted out of respect for a family who had lost a child. A family who were among the innocent victims of Jesse’s decision.

...

We can condemn Jesse’s actions but do we have the right to criticize how his family said goodbye?


Except that I don't know of anybody on our side that condemns the family for ASKING to have the funeral at the school. In fact, I have specifically pointed out that I don't blame them. In grief, sometimes one makes irrational choices.

Our point is that the school should have taken a step back, looked at the situation objectively and without emotion, and said "No, given the circumstances, that is not an appropriate action."

It's a lot easier to argue against the positions you WISH we were taking than it is to argue against the positions we actually take, isn't it Erma?

AND ONE MORE THING: This little line from the article --

Children didn’t attend classes on Monday but a very real life lesson was taught.


I fear you're right, Erma. Because that lesson is "Be a violent felon and people will honor you, while live-and-let-live, law-abiding types get ignored completely."

[For more, MUCH more, on this, take a look at the comments of my original post on the matter. You might also want to see the Topix discussion thread here.]

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you need to re-read that opinion article. It sounds like you may have read it with a preconceived opinion. Erma

11:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

John, I think you need to get over it. Seriously, do you spend all your time worrying about it? Things like family are much more important to be thinking about then something as petty as this. Stop being so overdramatic about it. It's pathetic. At least have the courage to post your first and last name. If you can't even do that, you're not going to get anything done.

9:26 PM  
Blogger John said...

"John, I think you need to get over it. Seriously, do you spend all your time worrying about it?"

I spend about five minutes a day on this. Five minutes trying to make the world a better place, where violent criminals don't get held up as some kind of hero. Five minutes wondering why you're all so willing to defend the school board, when you did NOTHING to help the victims of Johnson's crimes. How much time do YOU spend on it, by the way?

Five minutes out of my day. Oh, the HORROR!

"Things like family are much more important to be thinking about then something as petty as this."

I find it sad that you believe the rule of law and setting a good example are petty. But that explains a lot about your side.

"It's pathetic. At least have the courage to post your first and last name. If you can't even do that, you're not going to get anything done."

Longtime readers of this blog know that long ago I posted my first and last name -- John Hutchison. There, do you feel better, ANONYMOUS? What matters is the points I brought up, not the identity of who made them.

8:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all I do not condone having the funeral on a school day ( saturday would have been fine). But these actions are normal ( for this area) when a student dies. I have attened many schools throughout the world and ONLY in this area of the US do they have a half mast and funeral at the school. My senior class ( many years ago) had students that died from a wreck and others from hunting. ALL students were given the same treatment regardless of their past. And there was a missed day of school. But from what I saw..it was needed. The students that new the ones that passed away couldn't stop crying. Who could expect them to attend class? I know this boy was an unsavery type but I can't help but wonder how it effected those he went to school with since kindergarden. But regardless of how this affected who..I guess what I am trying to convey in a long winded way is this:
Every area of the world has different customs and different religions.No matter what we think or if we agree they continue to practise them. This funeral is an example of rural culture.
Take this as a lesson learned about the culture of your local area. File it and move on.

12:25 PM  

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