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Burnett's Urban Etiquette

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Quick Hits - Law & Order Edition

Sorry - no narrative today. At least not right now. I'm trying to make progress on an article, update my in-the-coming weeks story schedule for my editor, and gather my notes so I can head over to South Beach for a couple of interviews at the Victoria's Secret Pink show/party. That's right guys. Read it and weep. That'll teach some of ya to make fun of reporters!

Anywho, here are my thoughts on what's in the news:
  • John Couey Must Die: In case you don't follow the news, that is not the name of a sequel to that horrible comedy John Tucker Must Die. Couey is the guy who kidnapped, raped, and murdered 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford. He buried her alive. He is on trial here in Miami, 'cause an impartial jury couldn't be seated in his county. And he is facing the death penalty if convicted. He confessed, but prosecutors couldn't use it at trial, because he confessed after asking police for a lawyer and not getting one. I know some of you don't like the death penalty 'cause you don't believe humans have the right to take each other's lives. I hate to disappoint you. And I hope I don't lose you as readers, but I disagree. I have two feelings on the death penalty - I approve of the concept, but I disapprove of how it is applied in this country. Therefore I don't like it, if that makes any sense. If there was a way we could be 100% certain that everyone put on death row did the crime and did it in cold blood, I'd say fire away. But look at Illinois in recent years and all the people exhonerated from DR. The thought that these men could have been executed, and they were actually innocent? Terrifying to me. However, this Couey case is one of those slam dunks. And even if you oppose the very concept of capital punishment, deep, deep, deep, down inside something must be nagging you about this case. If there was ever a candidate for the Kentucky Fried Chair this guy is it. And to you media critics, I'm not reporting on this case, and I'm not on the jury. So I can give my opinion. One more thing about this. Apparently Couey has become mentally ill since he did this. I'm being facetious. His attorneys have argued that he has been mentally retarded for some time. In this country we don't execute mentally retarded people. Or at least we're not supposed to. Why the hell is it though that people's issues like that don't seem to come out until they're in deep, deep trouble? Would anyone have ever said this guy's life was hamstrung by retardation if he hadn't been charged with a heinous crime? As a defense strategy I can't blame him. If I was facing KFC, I wouldn't just be scribbling in a coloring book during trial, I'd be making faces at the jury, and flinging my crap at the judge. If my life didn't get spared, I'd at least get an Oscar for best performance of a sudden mental illness. For once though, I'd like a killer or rapist or otherwise violent assailant to just admit from the beginning, "I'm not crazy. I'm not retarded. I'm just plain old evil."
  • Puff, puff, pass: You hear about the teens in Texas, who taught their toddler nephew to smoke weed? Lock those little bastards up - the teens, not the toddler, of course. That's horrible. Last thing we need is another drifty kid, growing up with the munchies and no ambition.
  • Astronut update: Ladies and gents, if ever there was a reason to make sure you and the person you "admire" are on the same page, this is it. Emails released by prosecutors in Orlando, Fla., reveal that while the male astronaut at the center of this mess considered their relationship exclusive but never considered the suspect a "girlfriend," the diaper- and wig-wearing, mace-toting suspect had a different idea of their relationship. She went nanners. Ladies make sure that if you "say he's just a friend" that he knows that too, 'cause you don't want the guy who you call to share your "real" guy problems with thinking he's your man. And guys, same goes for you. If you say she's just a friend, you'd better make sure she's aware of that, 'cause your rabbits can boil just like anyone else's.

OK, I have work to do.

Peace and hair grease till this evening.

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  • Nicely said.
    Didn't know you were a reporter.
    That explains the good wordsmanship.

    By Blogger Tony Scornavacca Jr., at 2:18 PM  

  • Even if we could apply the death penalty with 100% certainty, I still oppose it--for many reasons.

    I think the more people really think about it the less they like the concept. Now, this is coming from a guy who got out of his car this morning to yell at some jerk so... I still have street cred.

    By Blogger Matt, at 2:38 PM  

  • She went nanners. this line made me laugh so hard!!! ahhh... i needed that.

    and you know this woman was just completely heart broken. so she went a little nuts... i understand. i go nuts myself sometimes. i just dont wear diapers.

    i could start... but my butt looks big enough in my pants. no need to pair it up with the sound of rustling grocery bags when i walk. no sirreee... there are reasons why women shouldn't go nuts and it has nothing to do with the men they are with but all to do with the fashion statement they need to make.

    oh and the only issue i have with the death penalty is that we are afraid to use it when its most needed and quick triggerd on the ones that may not.

    as a woman who's experienced alot... including some horrific shit.. don't for a minute think that i wish they would have fried his ass for what he did. trust me. i know what being a victim feels like and nothing in my mind or body said "let him live." not once.

    By Blogger Yasamin, at 2:52 PM  

  • To me the most interesting thing to come out of this whole NASA debacle is the realization that astronauts were those same diapers at various intervals in space.

    I'll never look at the space program in the same way again.

    By Blogger thirdworstpoetinthegalaxy, at 3:12 PM  

  • Oppps, I mean... astronauts "wear."

    By Blogger thirdworstpoetinthegalaxy, at 3:12 PM  

  • "....'cause your rabbits can boil just like anyone else's...."


    I absolutely love the way you write. Really.

    By Blogger SWF41, at 4:47 PM  

  • Another thing folks going up against the death penalty often get is religion. There was one in Texas; I'll never forget her name: Karla Faye Tucker. She found Jesus while on death row, and all these people came out of the woodwork saying that now that she was born again, she should not be executed because she was sorry for her crime. Not granting her clemency was the only thing I ever agreed with George Bush about - he was our governor then.

    By Blogger fiwa, at 4:50 PM  

  • This was my favorite:

    "If I was facing KFC, I wouldn't just be scribbling in a coloring book during trial, I'd be making faces at the jury, and flinging my crap at the judge."

    Great post James!

    By Anonymous Freddie, at 4:54 PM  

  • Three stories of how America is really f*cked up--I do believe we have now eclipsed the late 19th century in depravity levels.

    Couey needs to be fried one piece at a time. That beautiful child he raped and strangled within fifty yards of her home will never grow old, bear children of her own and live past this life. Damn him for that. And damn his sister too since the heifer had him staying in her house and lied about it to cover for him.

    The dude giving a joint to the 2 and 3 year olds is just plain wasteful on so many levels that it is hard for me to quantify it here. Let's just say that brain cells, youthful lives, adult lives, innocence, and most importantly, marijuana, was wasted on all who smoked it. There is nothing more profane than such senseless waste.

    And lastly--900 urine soaked miles...for a guy whom she probably ruined her family to go after...(sigh)...some people just don't know when to stop playing their losing hand and must go past rock bottom to six feet under. Lisa Nowak, you are officially a complete LOSER. Let's just hope she doesn't slink 10 urine soaked feet toward you at an intersection to mumble into your window for some spare change.

    By Anonymous Big Daddy, at 4:56 PM  

  • Okay, so I'm the only one who only wants to comment on the Victoria's Secrect show? Fine, I can live with that.

    Just be sure to tell Adriana Lima I said hello. She'll remember me. ;-)

    I hate the death penalty debate almost as much as I hate the abortion debate.

    By Blogger Jay, at 6:07 PM  

  • We had something similar right here in North Carolina recently. Woman comes home from work and finds her 4 year old daughter dead - with her head cut off. Police chased down Dad, (John Patrick Violette,) who was found screaming scripture from Revelations in some motel room.

    Interesting thing is that he had a history of schizophrenia, but, get this, his SISTER felt he was misdiagnosed and convinced him to stop taking his medication a few years earlier.

    By Blogger The Sarcasticynic, at 6:52 PM  

  • great read...i sat here nodding and laughing and thinking..damn near all at the same time!

    thanks, james!

    By Blogger savannah, at 7:33 PM  

  • Does rabbits = testicals? : )

    By Blogger Angie, at 9:03 PM  

  • Tony, thank you. This blog is stress relief. My day job is reporting.

    Matt, I respect your opposition. And we probably see eye to eye on a lot of your reasons. Like I said, I approve of the concept but don't like its current application.

    Yas, you're too young yet for diapers. And I'm sorry you had to be a victim of something bad. Wouldn't wish that on anyone.

    ThirdWorst, she might've borrowed those diapers from the work stash.

    SWF41, thank you! You're making me all blushy.

    Fiwa, it is interesting that religion is often cited as a reason to enforce capital punishment but from time to time it's used to argue against it. My whole thing with Karla Faye Tucker is if she really found Jesus, then fine. Carry on with the execution, so she can meet him in person sooner.

    Freddie, thanks. Just trying to generate some food for thought.

    BD, nice commentary. Glad we agree on Couey. I agree that whole weed thing was a waste. Couldn't have said it better. And the astronut is a loser. Trauma, emotion, blah blah blah. She threw away her commitment to her husband and kids so she could chase a pipe...dream. Definite loser. If she didn't like her husband she ould've made it official and left and gotten a legal agreement on custody sharing of their kids.

    Jay, it was fabulous. As the kids like to say, the party was off the chain. And as soon as I catch my seond wind, I'm headed back later tonight for the after party.
    And I understand your feeling on the death subject. It's icky. No nice way to chat about it. I respect your no-comment.

    Sarc, that's insane! No pun intended. They should charge his sister as an accessory for urging him to stop taking his meds. And I'm torn on what to do with him. Again, his crime was horrible - murder. It just doesn't get worse. But do we just lock him a padded cell? Maybe. If he's really truly diagnosable and is so bad off that he can't distinguish right from wrong and he was that way BEFORE he committed this murder then I say spare his life and lock him up.

    Savannah, glad it got you thinking. My plan worked ;-)

    Ha ha! Sorry Angie. In this case rabbits means rabbits, as in these rabbits.

    By Blogger James Burnett, at 9:27 PM  

  • Toddler stoners and diaper wearing, stalker-nauts. I think it's time for me to hop in my space shit and get the hell out of here.

    By Blogger Mitch McDad, at 9:34 PM  

  • Sounds like you've got quite the to-do list. The Victoria's Secret show might help you cope with that though...

    By Blogger Michael C, at 11:32 PM  

  • I'm 100% death penalty as long as the cops aren't perjuring themselves and planting evidence. Like you said slam dunks.

    Growing up in the 70's I saw people give their small children weed. I had a joint handed to me at a sitar concert when I was three. It's pretty dumb especially in this day and age. I think I'd
    stomp a mudhole in any jackass that tried to give my kids drugs.

    By Blogger Hammer, at 11:53 PM  

  • Poor little girl ......She suffocated, inside a plastic bag, buried in the groud,holding on to her teddy bear, bleeding vaginally from a viscious rape.

    Who was there to protest her innocent death?

    There seems to always be someone to speak for the life of the convicted killer.

    I think execution is too kind for him.

    By Blogger Pamela, at 12:01 AM  

  • Sorry I haven't been by in a while. Glad to see you still have your way of making me think,laugh, yell 'right on!" and "are you kidding me' all at the same time. I personally am all for the death penalty though I totally get why people are against it(some of them at least). I wish in part they could speed it up, but at the same time I figure giving all that time for appeals and such at least makes an honest attempt to reach the 'how much time is enough' unanswerable question. The part that drives me nuts is the families handling of the situation. I completely 'get' loving your family no matter what and do so no matter what, but wrong is wrong no matter who did it. I think if i were to find out tomorrow without a doubt my own mother(whom I love and adore more than anyone on this planet)committed some unspeakable crime I would do the world a favor and pull the switch myself. Harsh? perhaps, but absolutely true. The only thing about the marijuana kids i took solace in was seeing the uncle's grandmother getting on screen and saying 'he was wrong and should be punished' I LOVED that. I could go on and on but I will shut up now.


    By Blogger briliantdonkey, at 12:13 AM  

  • i wonder if college students start throwing diaper parties it will become a national phenomenom and National Lampoons will come out of its horrible movie rutt to make

    Animal House Part Deux: When the Shit Hits the Fan!

    By Blogger Yasamin, at 3:13 AM  

  • I like the part where he did not read a message until he got back to earth. I think he was never really here and neither was Nowak.

    By Blogger C, at 8:57 AM  

  • Preach on, James! I say let's treat him how he treated her. Bury his sorry ass alive. If more crimes were punished like they were committed, I believe people would think before doing stupid shit.

    Btw..Miami Beach is not the place for me. I loved the diversity and the different languages, cultures, etc., but THAT many crazy people on one city, no, no. There's no crazy person ordinance in place? Missed my Piston/Heat game too. $140 taxi ride or 3 hours on a city bus at 11:30pm. I had to pass. =(

    By Blogger Christina_the_wench, at 8:58 AM  

  • "My whole thing with Karla Faye Tucker is if she really found Jesus, then fine. Carry on with the execution, so she can meet him in person sooner."

    James, I wanted to add that to my comment, but I was too shy. That is exactly the way I felt about it.

    By Blogger fiwa, at 1:00 PM  

  • I was watching a bit about Jessica L. yesterday and a few things came to mind...
    1. What he did was completely disgusting and twisted.
    2. He knew damn well what he was doing...
    3. The fact he's trying to make people believe he's mentally retarded is ridiculous and an insult to anyone who is mentally retarded. This man has a record of sexually assaulting children and had even asked for help for it. Claiming that he's mentally retarded equals saying he doesn't know what he did was wrong...then why had he asked for help?

    By Blogger Claudia, at 2:04 PM  

  • I don't watch the news. I find it to depressing. But I would never stop reading your blog even if I didn't agree with you about the death penalty. Anybody that rapes and kills a 9 year old deserves to die.

    By Blogger captain corky, at 10:01 PM  

  • Mitch, when I have kids I think I'll seal 'em up in a Biosphere dome till they're 18.

    Michael, I managed ;-)

    Hammer, I'm with you. Giving weed to children calls for a severe beating, the kind my grandma would call a like-you-stole-something beating.

    Pamela, amen!

    BD2, you raise an interesting point. I'm also certain that if, God forbid, I ever committed murder, my folks, who love me dearly, would support the judge that ordered me to the KFC.

    Yas, diaper parties sound kinda freaky. Not sure the innocence of today's college campuses could handle 'em.

    C, that is pretty funny. I could see where one or both of them is still circling the moon.

    Christina, thanks for the vote of confidence and sorry you missed your game. Don't apologize about not taking the buses. Sometimes the public transpo around here smells like old feet, old sweaty feet. And if there was a crazy person ordinance in place the buses and trains would be mostly empty. I gotta tell you though, $140 for a cab ride from your hotel to the AAA for a Heat game is a rip off. From your location that cab ride should've been about $50, if that.

    No problem, Fiwa. I'm not shy ;-)

    Claudia, logic like yours is why the defense in this case never stood a chance.

    Capt., here here!

    By Blogger James Burnett, at 11:21 PM  

  • Amen 3 times over!

    By Blogger Dayngr, at 9:21 AM  

  • Dude, I totally called it on that astronut! I figured they hadn't actually had a real relationship, it just sounded like the delusions of a crazy person, not rooted in any reality.

    I don't know what to say about that guy that killed that poor little girl. That is horrible. But I don't think civilized societies kill people. If I thought it would bring the child back, I'd want to do it myself. But since that's not the case, no dice, in my opinion.

    By Blogger bc, at 11:52 AM  

  • Okay, so I read that article you linked to, and it seems they DID have a relationship at some point, but not when she left a yellow trail down the road to that airport. I think this woman is more crazy than a loser. She was a loser when she was cheating on her husband, but she became pitiful and mentally ill once she decided to take that trip. And her ex-lover is no prize, either, remember - he knew she was married, too...

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