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Friday, Dec.11, 1998 saw The Australian on p. 6 do a little exposé on juvenile crime, in terms of the experience of a prominent judge. Where are children heading in this new form of disease inducement, added to their perils in growing up! It is time to resolve this point.
"top Children's Court judge" criticised deeply the presumption that children
under 14 "did not have the capacity for criminal behaviour". It is in fact
not so long ago in this country that children at 14 were 'fully educated',
equipped for their new work duties, and were given in their final school year, material aimed at having them not only compos mentis, but responsible and ready to develop in their fields.
The Queensland Judge gave the case of a boy convicted of arson, while the prosecution could not prevail because they failed to prove he had the capacity to commit the crime. Consequences are disregarded and "the child is left to go his own way, as if nothing had happened" - said the Judge. How readily do people claiming - or having claimed for them - disadvantage, find ways of exploiting their advantage in being perceived as incapable. Thus a vigorous if stormy aborigine told me in tones combining contempt and competence, of the ease with which he could manipulate a judge to his desires, in terms of escaping penalty. He assessed, acted and obtained, all quite consciously, using artfully, if not artistically, the known principles and feelings of the law-enforcer, to achieve his own simple ends, with complete success. This is not imagination but narration.
While it is appalling how many are indeed exploited on all sides, it is not for that reason wise to pander to the philosophies of delusion which pretend morals do not occur in their natural state until mid-teens, or after a University degree, or in significant degree in aboriginal races. All this is in fact insulting to those concerned, and tends to be self-fulfilling, since the kudos/facility obtained by this degrading estimate is exceptionally useful. Hence it becomes a prostitution of personality in a racist fashion, or a demeaning of youth in a luxury of self-indulgence. Unrealistically reducing the real competence of parties by their loose imagination, or philosophical postulates or both, law enforcers can then extend foolishness to epidemic proportions by preparing in advance excuses which tempt, through the knowledge they are there, ready made!
It is indeed true that some are mental cases when young, underprivileged in morals, but it is equally true that the State frequently educates them so that this results, affirming self-preservation, self-importance (call it self-esteem), self-centredness - even when one operates in company. There, it can so easily intone, you may need to learn the laws of aggression, to preserve your sacredness? And why sacredness ? Since the worship of God may be more or less dispensed with on the grounds it is religious and hence to be ignored, suppressed or at any rate left unexpressed, self becomes the next option, and immorality the name of the disease.
As if this were not enough, we are passing into a strange new exchange of roles. In times past, when childhood was or could be a time of mystery, of finding great things about life, about God, about truth, with intense imagination and vivid impacts, now the children are being given a sort of imagination AIDS, in which they become susceptible to severe moral infection, especially hard to cure, prone to a resistance-reducing moral disease born of sin on the one hand, and inane teaching of life, on the other. To make the folly comic, we are now being given highly imaginative stories by physicists - to take one quite striking example, who tell us just how things would happen in worlds very different from this one. It is as if the pedant becomes child, while the child grows prematurely aged, often virtually senile in sin and hence sophisticated out of childhood.
The problem here is this: that this genre of scientist does not, frequently does not manage to tell us or at any rate make it clear, that their stories are not about this world, but a realm of childhood imagination, where what happens is not what they project, and what they project is not what happens. In the end, the myth of all things coming from nothing is merely the ultimate in this adult hallucination, which in children could have been merely an unmoored imagination in a drifting mind. The cocktail of opposites may seem glamorous; but so to some, is a brothel. The unnatural is merely productive of disease, and symptomatic of distemper. It is the cure in the spiritual source of morals which is needed; and for that the cure of the spiritual deficiency occasioned by man, young or old, black or white, without God.
Nor does the imagination of God help here, any more than feckless imaginings contrary to fact, raised for instruction. God has declared Himself roundly about sin and salvation, and come to perform it in Jesus Christ, equipped in everything and unabashed at the results of sin and death itself. To ignore this is to experiment in worlds other than this one, while still living here. Like absent-minded driving, this invites telegraph poles like a magnet.