Greetings and Salutations;
Hum...."he's got to learn that you can't say stuff like that and not have any consequences".
Well, that is a point. However, I would argue that this is an infringement of our first amendment rights of free speech simply because it occurred in a forum where there was a certain expectation of privacy. Now, do not jump all over me about FB...I know how it works. However, it is far different than walking into a movie theatre and yelling "FIRE". That has already been ruled by the SCOTUS as non-protected speech. Totally different case, though.
No, in my opinion, this was a massive over-reaction by the authorities, and, unless there is more data about the young man, or the situation that adds to the picture, I am going to stick with that opinion. I want to remind you that this is America, where, at one time, a Citizen's Freedom was considered one of the most important rights he or she had. To have it casually taken away because of a thoughtless and meaningless remark craps on the efforts of our Founding Fathers, and, all the brave citizens who have laid down there lives to save this right. The fact of the matter is that it IS punishment for a crime that did not happen. I am not comfortable with the whole kneejerk creation of laws about "terroristic Threats". IN general, it seems as if too many of them are so broadly written that they are little more than excuses for locking up people who express unpopular opinions, or, speak foolishly in the heat of the moment. This kid appears to have spouted off in the heat of the moment, after playing a hack and slash game. According to an interview with his father, he also pays little or no attention to the news, and really does not have the maturity level to understand the impact of his remarks.
He has been incarcerated for several months now, and, if the judge decides he wants to "make an example" of someone, he could end up in prison for eight years! Eight years in a society rift with felons, being exposed to a lawless but barely controlled environment, where one cannot trust anyone, and, there are many opportunities to learn job skills that do nothing but ensure he will be successful as a parasite on society. Is that what we really want to do? Turn out another predator who, if he was joking about killing kids when he was tossed into prison, will likely NOT be doing so when he gets out? I, personally would rather find another option. For example, I would call for a series of therapy sessions, and, community service, to help build empathy for others.
YOu may think that his current incarceration is the proper way to handle him. Just remember that the sort of erosion of rights that has happened in the past decade has a tendency to continue and grow. Today it is Justin. Next month it could be you, or one of your family who is caught up in the net.