Again, I don't know you. I don't know your definition of "wild," though I doubt it includes causing physical harm to anyone. However, if you had intentionally hurt someone, would you have known at the age of 11 that it was wrong and that you would be punished?
No one has a clear idea of what dying is. I can't say my understanding of it has become any more advanced of death has become any more advanced since I was a kid, except perhaps I'm a tad less afraid of it. The point remains though that in sixth grade, I knew I didn't want to die, I knew I didn't want anyone I loved to die and I had the ability to expand that understanding to include the fact that other people wouldn't want their loved ones to die. Possibly I was a genius, though I have the sneak suspicion that I was just a normal kid.Of course I can't be sure about this, but I honestly doubt he had a clear idea of what dying is, and its consequences to those who loved his victim. I was considered a pretty bright kid by everyone - my mum, my relatives, my teachers, etc. when I was his age, but I dunno if I really had much of a handle on death at that time. I have never been around guns (not even my dad's service revolver or his fowling pieces,) but I cannot be certain that I would not have killed someone by accident, or in a rage, if I had access to firearms when I was 11. And I come from a stable, non-abusive home.
Kids know murder is wrong. They know what death is. They know there are consequences for their actions. That they chose to ignore self control does not change the fact that they are still responsible for their actions. I don't see any other factor that remains for them to avoid being held to the same level of punishment as adults.
I have no shame for that. You cannot possibly believe that someone that's 17 and 364 days has no idea what they're doing when they kill someone, but someone that's 18 does.And I mean no disrespect to your views when I say that it just seems improper to try this kid, or any kid his age, as an adult. I have discussed this with my uncle who is a Queen's Council in London, and he tells me that would be an impossibility in any civilised jurisdiction. He drew my attention to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and in particular to the articles that say no one under 18 shall be subject to the adult penal code, failing which, the establishment of a minimum age below which children shall be presumed not to have the capacity to infringe the penal law, irrespective of the crime, is mandatory. But the convention specifies 18.
Unfortunately, the only two societies on earth which have refused to ratify this convention are Somalia and the United States of America.
I'll ask you the same thing I asked jallman. What list of criteria do you think should be present that can be applied to ALL offenders to decide if they should be tried as adults or children. Obviously there's some level of comprehension that you believe adults have that children do not. What makes up that comprehension, in your mind?