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  1. Instead of our obvious gut instinct that says, "Shoot them now, or force them to die a slow, painful death," I'm hoping that this discussion can focus on prevention. What can we do to stop things such as this from happening? I stress: Instead of an outlet for our anger, I'm hoping that this group can come up with ideas to ferret out people like this going forward; otherwise, there's no point in discussing this here, as so many other media outlets are undoubtedly having comments calling for these peoples' heads. I think it's pretty clear that this would have happened, even if the penalty was "Prolonged death by slow torture." Warning: Do not read this if you'll be traumatized by details of child abuse: "Horrific Details Emerge as Perris Parents Accused of Holding 13 Kids Captive Are Charged with Torture" by Paloma Esquivel, Sonali Kohli, and Joseph Serna on latimes.com One idea: Care about your neighbors, even if you've never met them before. Notice things, be a little nosy, and if you're proven wrong, apologize and simply explain why you were concerned - then introduce yourself, shake their hand, and invite them over for a glass of wine one day. If my neighbor did such a thing to me, for whatever reason, I would thank them. In fact, when I had a Little Brother (i.e., the Big Brothers program), I was questioned a couple of times by strangers (picture a white male in his 30s, walking through the woods with a black pre-teen), and I always thanked them for their concern, rather than resented their intrusiveness. Hell, when I crossed the Canadian border with my son, the authorities questioned him (not me), and I thanked them for it.
  2. What an excellent movie "Charly" is. Based on the book "Flowers for Algernon," it stars Cliff Robertson in an Academy Award-winning role as Charly, and he is magnificent - fully deserving of a Best Actor award. I'm not going to go into any details, because this film is free on putlocker.com, and if you can tolerate the rather dubious "extra windows" that open on occasion, you can watch one heck of a good movie for free. This falls within the "exceptional person" genre of fictional biopic: Refer to "Rainman," "A Beautiful Mind," "The Man Who Knew Infinity," etc., but interestingly, this film also falls within the science fiction genre, and has elements of "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," and even "A Clockwork Orange" as well (without any of the "ultra-violence"). It's a complex, moving, character study, as well as a commentary on ethics, and our society's treatment of the mentally ill. I highly recommend this film to anyone and everyone - you won't get a lot of action, but you won't need it.
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