Monday, December 03, 2007

No Justice: No Charges

According to the county prosecutor, he can't file charges. Essentially, we knew this already... but that never gets in the way of a lawyer, politician, or some combination of the two from making a public statement.

You might remember the story of Megan Meier of Dardenne Prairie, Missouri... she hanged herself last year after one of her MySpace friends sent a few rather cruel messages. She was 13 years old... and understandably, the parents are frustrated in the extreme. I mentioned this in a post called No Justice.
County Prosecutor Jack Banas said at a news conference there was no applicable statue to file charges in the case. Banas said he looked at laws related to stalking, harassment and child endangerment, but found no repeated incidents of threats to someone's life or health, and no organized conspiracy.

Outside of the poor girl's suicide and the devastating effect upon her family and the people involved with the so-called friend's MySpace account, the important question is what to do about similar cases from here on out?
After the case became public, Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt asked lawmakers to review state law to see if changes were necessary to better deal with cases that involve Internet bullying. Some municipalities have also considered or passed statutes to strengthen laws that deal with Internet harassement.

Bullying, huh? Well, something tells me that the Internet really doesn't have anything to do with it. If you want to lay the hammer down on flks who bully, then that's your issue.

This is all about politicians, even those apparently involved in the less-government wing of politics, who want to hitch their wagons to big-story horses and create the appearance of doing the work of the people.

Here's some advice for Missouri's governor... read the Constitution. Simply because a very specific law addressing a specific set of circumstances isn't on the books doesn't mean you need one.

When a company comes out with laser pistols do you need to create a law that makes murder with a laser weapon illegal? Maybe someone in Missouri politics will think so.


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