Friday, December 13, 2013

This is how monsters are created - Teen with ‘affluenza’ gets away with murder

Good Day World!

Did you know there’s actually a term for spoiled rich kids (other than brats)?

It’s referred to as "affluenza." Translated, that means a person experiencing the emotional pitfalls of consumerism and excess wealth. Poor babies. It must be tough.

The term was popularized in the late 1990s by Jessie O'Neill, the granddaughter of a past president of General Motors, when she wrote the book "The Golden Ghetto: The Psychology of Affluence."

It has since been used to describe a condition in which children - generally from richer families - have a sense of entitlement, are irresponsible, make excuses for poor behavior, and sometimes dabble in drugs and alcohol, explained Dr. Gary Buffone, a Jacksonville, Fla., psychologist who does family wealth advising.

From what I’ve seen and read about the justice system in this country, there’s no doubt that the wealthy and their children are judged by different standards. Examples are everywhere.

The latest one involves a drunken rich teenager who killed four pedestrians in his pickup truck loaded down with two cases of beer and his buddies. What outrages me is this is clearly a case of his parents wealth reducing his crime to just probation.

What do you suppose this 16-year old learned? it’s obvious: he’s now aware that he can get away with murder using money. Simple but an effective message. Throw in a corrupt court system and lawyers and judges that should be forced to take ethics classes, and you have chaos in our so-called system of justice.

Here’s the final kicker; Mommy and Daddy don’t want the little darling to do his probation-only sentence in that nasty Texas probation system (Oh, heavens no! That’s for the poor!), so their highly paid lawyer is working with the judge to let the underage killer go to a luxurious rehab center in Newport (let’s go surfing) California! The parents don’t have any problem paying the $450,000 a year it’ll cost.

This is how you create monsters...

This is the story:     

“A North Texas teen from an affluent family received a probation-only sentence this week for losing control of his pickup truck while drunk and killing four pedestrians, a punishment that has outraged the victims' families and left prosecutors disappointed.

The 16-year-old boy was sentenced Tuesday in a Fort Worth juvenile court to 10 years of probation after he confessed to charges of intoxication manslaughter in the June 15 crash on a dark rural road.

Prosecutors had sought the maximum 20 years in state custody for the Keller teen, but his attorneys appealed to state District Judge Jean Boyd that he needed rehabilitation instead of imprisonment, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.

His pickup truck slammed into the four pedestrians, killing 43-year-old Burleson youth minister Brian Jennings; Breanna Mitchell, 24; Shelby Boyles, 21, and her 52-year-old mother, Hollie Boyles.

Prosecutor Richard Alpert argued in court that if the boy continues to be cushioned by his family's wealth, another tragedy is likely in his future.

"There can be no doubt that he will be in another courthouse one day blaming the lenient treatment he received here," he said.

Judge Boyd said the programs available in the Texas juvenile justice system may not provide the kind of intensive therapy the teen could receive at a rehabilitation center near Newport Beach, Calif., that was suggested by his defense attorneys. The parents would pick up the tab for the center, which runs more than $450,000 a year for treatment.

Eric Boyles, who lost his wife and daughter, believes the family's wealth helped the teen avoid incarceration.

"Money always seems to keep you out of trouble," Boyles said. "Ultimately today, I felt that money did prevail. If you had been any other youth, I feel like the circumstances would have been different."

A psychologist called as an expert defense witness said the boy suffered from "affluenza," a term used to describe the emotional pitfalls of consumerism and excess wealth.”

Time for me to walk on down the road…

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