thoughts w/ josiahhallett: on “empathy”

First, a little poem
(50% stolen from a Switchfoot lyric – “Selling the News” off the album Vice Verses)

When feelings reign sovereign
Nought can be sacred
When nothing is sacred
All is consumed

Second, a news article

Judge Rules With Empathy – Sets Troubling Precedent

Westwood judge John Candid has tried 46 year old murderer Steve Goodchild as a minor after listening with great tolerance and empathy to his retelling of the events leading up to the murder of his 43 year old wife.

“The way she treated me made me feel like a child, and after all those years married to her, I began to believe it,” said Mr. Goodchild, explaining that he simply cannot be held responsible for his actions as if he were an adult. “If I don’t feel like I’m an adult, how can you possibly expect me to behave like one?”

This is the first ruling of its kind, a step further removed from medical or mental concessions in court rulings all the way into the realm of feelings-based dictation of right and wrong.

In an unsurprising turn, Mr. Goodchild is now appealing his sentence to 4 years juvenile prison, mounting his appeal upon the precedent set by Mr. Candid in the ruling passed down in his own case. Mr. Goodchild said “I was feeling very angry at my wife, and in the same way that my feeling like a child excuses me from having to take responsibility for my actions as an adult, my feelings of anger should excuse me from being expected to have acted as someone who was not angry.”

– Josiah Hallett


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