And Why Am I In This Handbasket?

The Guardian: A teenager impregnated his younger sister, who later killed the baby and hid the body in a duffel bag in her closet, authorities said. Everybody loses here. Everybody.

The Crimson: In one entry, Burch said she was “ready to get a shotgun and declare open season on all senior faculty members and students who dared cross [her].” “It was definitely not my intention to slander anyone and I wasn’t trying to stir things up as they seemed to be implying,” she said. “I just sort of used the blog as a way to let off steam.” Um, yeah. You might want to rethink the whole “getting a shotgun and declaring open season on your co-workers thing” then. That kind of statement is apparently easily misconstrued. Sen. Mike DeWine fired a low-level staffer Friday after an Internet diary of her sexual exploits – including stories about taking money for sex from government officials – became the buzz of the Washington Beltway. Speaking of things you shouldn’t write on your weblog.

The Oregonian: Murder-by-abuse, punishable by life in prison with 25 years before possible parole, means the victim suffered from a pattern of assaults. An autopsy found Ryshawn Bynum died of a brain injury and had a broken neck, broken ribs and as many as 70 whip marks on his legs, buttocks, back and chest that were of various ages. This story holds a special place in my heart. Not only did a man do this to his own son, he also claims he’s not responsible because of generational trauma: Randall Vogt is offering the untested theory, called post traumatic slave syndrome, in his defense of Isaac Cortez Bynum, who is charged with murder by abuse in the June 30 death of his son, Ryshawn Lamar Bynum. Vogt says he will argue — “in a general way” — that masters beat slaves, so Bynum was justified in beating his son. OK, all racial and political overtones aside, how does anyone justify beating a child? I’m not naive, and I don’t condemn spanking, but breaking your kid’s neck and ribs and whipping the child is a horrible, horrible thing to do. Rule Number Three in my personal list of rules is Don’t Hurt Kids. A corollary to that rule says Especially Your Own Kid. This guy’s a sick piece of crap and needs to be punished twice: once for killing his own son and a second time for trying to hide from his actions with such a lame, politically charged excuse. The guy sickens me. I’d have taken his kid into my home if he didn’t want him anymore.

But there are some bright spots, like the eleven year old girl who wrote to Nordstrom’s to tell them that some girls would like to buy less-revealing clothing. Good for her. And some good folks are trying to save the apostrophe. Someone should. Plus, someone has mapped out Springfield. Cool. And someone is pointing out the idiocy of email disclaimers.

So it’s not all bad news. But is this the world I want my daughter to grow up in? It’s a scary thought.

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