Saturday, November 18, 2006

'Evil' teen sentenced to life in prison for hate crime

With all the debate over whether there are evil people or just people that commit evil acts, I found this article particularly interesting. The article tells the story of 18 year-old David Henry Tuck from Houston, Texas who was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 30 years. He received this sentence after severely beating and sodomizing a Hispanic boy during a party while shouting “white power.” The boy nearly died during his three-month stay at the hospital. The prosecutor referred to Tuck as an “evil person” that would not be able to be rehabilitated. The defense posed questions as to whether or not Tuck’s white-supremacist views come from the influence of his skinhead older brother who is also in jail. This was not the first incident of violence for Tuck and perhaps he truly is an “evil person” and not just one that commits evil acts. Is it possible for someone who commits evil acts to change or stop such violent acts?

5 comments:

morgan marks said...

Without even reading the article, I already had an opinion, and after reading it, my thoughts only became stronger. Someone very close to me really messed up ... and without going into details, I know that some people can change. And it is my firm belief that people should be given second chances, no matter what crime they committed. Someone will ask me, what if it was your family member who almost died? Well, I hope I'd find it in my heart to stand by my beliefs, because someone dear to me was given a second chance. People can be rehabilitated, with time, and with help. Think about Dozier, what if the doctors could trigger the person's meaning systems and change them, or begin to change them. The process may take more then thirty years, but change is possible. Even though it's a movie, has anyone ever seen American History X - Ed Norton changed in prison, I guess he sort of had no choice, but he changed. Sometimes it takes a lot for a person to see the light... like getting sentenced to 30 yrs. Then again, sometimes some people never see that light we all wish they'd see. But that's the risk I believe in taking, giving a person a second chance to try again, change their past. Maybe that's the hope in me talking, because I know some people, most maybe, will fail - but some, will rise and they'll be better. Sometimes all it takes is for someone to care... that's why those commandments were posted on a past post. Commandments about how to treat people, cause maybe someone needs a little extra caring, a little compassion, and really that could make all the difference. We all don't know one another's history, nor do we know Tuck's, we know his brother is a skinhead, his mother is a single working mom, he had an abusive absent father... and maybe he could have risen above then, but maybe prison time will be his ticket to change - I don't know, but I do believe he could come out better. I do believe in second chances.

Christine said...

I agree with Morgan's statements that people do deserve a second chance and that yes, people can change and even be rehabilitated. The question than becomes, as in the case of the boy in the article, how many chances does one person get? To that, I do not know the answer. I too have seen people change for the better as well as people repeat their offenses. A variety of people can commit the same crime, which makes it hard to create some kind of understanding or explanation for one's actions. I've met a number of different criminals, some who I believe were good people in bad situations and others who I believe acted with serious malice. However, I still debate whether that malice was innate or was situational. I think that people commit evil acts because of a situation that arises and with that I agree with Morgan that most people can change, and at the very least people do deserve that opportunity. However, sadly I don't know that all people are capable of being rehabilitated.

jimbo said...

I think second chances are great for certain people. Alot of crimes are commited in rage or anger, and those people are very sorry for what they did and i think that those people should be shown second chances. For somone who beats another individual almost to dealth while yelling "white power" I think the chance of rehibilitation are slim. The influences from his brother probley impact his desiccions but never the less his actions and his beliefs i dont think will ever change. Allowing him another chance just puts other minorities at risk for persicution and what if next time him kills his victim then what do we say oops we made a mistake sorry your son or daughter is dead?

Fix520 said...

I agree with the above statements that there is a potential in some people to be rehabilitated. I think that depending on circumstances and therapy poeple whom commit "evil acts" can change for the better. I don't think you can make a generalize a decision or an opinion based on one person. Each person and each act is individual and must be treated accordingly.

Anonymous said...

This article reminds me of the movie American History X and the murder of Matthew Shepard, who was gay. There is just so much hatred in the people who committed the crimes that I am not sure if they could change. Granted, Ed Norton did change when he came back from prison, but I wonder how accurate that is in real life. I think if people deserve it, they should be given a second chance. This 18 year old boy--is only 18. He still is young, and maybe he will have hope of change. This boy might be able to learn how to suppress his evil actions, but I think the evilness will be deep inside him.

--Kristy G