Matty McFeely, former President of SALMS and current 3L, just had a situationist-inspired letter to the editor published in The New Yorker. The article to which he was responding (by Rachel Aviv’s “No Remorse,” January 2, 2012) was about a 15-year-old sentenced to life without parole for shooting his grandfather. Before the murder, the boy’s girlfriend had just dumped him and a number of other things weren’t going his way, and the article asked whether putting a minor away for life was appropriate. Matty’s letter read as follows:
Aviv’s article forces us to rethink the justice system’s treatment of young adults, but it should also be a call for stricter gun control. It was too simple for Eliason to take “his grandfather’s loaded gun off the coatrack” and then shoot his grandfather. Eliason’s grim tale shows what surveys have already told us: the availability of guns is linked to higher rates of both suicide and homicide. A teen-ager’s rather routine funk became a senseless tragedy because a lethal device was at hand. A person’s situation has a lot of power over his or her behavior; we would be wise to recognize that fact and shape our situations accordingly.
Related Situationist posts:
- Brain and Blame
- Sarah Palin a Naive Cynic?
- The Psychology of Guns and Race
- Andrew Papachristos Explains Why Criminals Obey the Law – Video
- The Situation of Handguns on Urban Streets-Abstract
- Interview with Professor Robert MacCoun on Drug Policy
- The Situation of Criminality – Abstract,
- Deindividuation and Seung Hui Cho
- The Situation of First-Person Shooters
- Clarence Darrow on the Situation of Crime and Criminals, and
- Why Criminals Obey the Law – Abstract.