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Another Reason Why Not to Raise Boys in the US


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In a little-known measure in the No Child Left Behind Act, the US military gets a line on every high school student for purposes of direct recruitment. Just heard that on CBC, and just about shat.

Maybe it would be better if the children were left behind just a little bit.... Anyway, I know that this measure of Bush's is a big crock; all the conditions were renegged once enough Democrats had gullibly signed on. I'd really hate to be poor and trying to raise a family down south.

And what's with the "Left Behind" phrase there? Is that to appeal through unconscious tweaking to the Christian Right?


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More scary news...

Canadian teen's family considering appeal of bomb threat convictions

at 18:31 on June 14, 2005, EST.


DOYLESTOWN, Pa. (CP) - The mother of a Canadian teenager convicted of bomb threat charges in the United States says she's furious, considering an appeal and worried about threats to her family.

Annette Biehn said Tuesday she wants her 15-year-old daughter Tristan to leave the U.S. and stay with relatives in Toronto while son Travis faces pre-sentencing evaluations and the family considers how best to "clear his name" in juvenile court.

"I'm trying to get Tristan out of the country but she's a very stubborn girl. We're very headstrong, it's a Newfoundland trait. That's why Travis is not buckling."

The family has received threatening e-mails and Biehn said she's concerned about Internet blogs about the case, which ignited emotional debate in Canada and the U.S. after authorities painted the 17-year-old as an angry youth who hates Americans.

"They're horrific," she said of the web comments. "One person even commented on the fact that he passes our street every day. That's really scary.

"They're talking about Canadians being thrown over Niagara Falls, being tarred and feathered and caned. I don't want (Tristan) going through this. It's crazy down here."

An appeal on the charges, uttering a terrorist threat and possessing incendiary devices, must be filed within 10 days, said Biehn.

Judge Kenneth Biehn (no relation to the family) ruled Monday after a one-day trial that the teen wrote a message on a bathroom stall threatening to blow up his high school and gathered explosive materials with the intention of building a bomb.

The boy's father, Brant, who moved the family to the Philadelphia area in 1997, testified the materials were used to make harmless smoke bombs for fireworks displays and burn a tree stump in the backyard to make way for a fish pond.

"The stump has been burned and the pond is half-constructed but no one looked at that," Biehn said Tuesday.

"We have a load of people around here all the time, as Newfoundlanders do, and we do fireworks by the pool."

Prosecutors, while admitting no one saw the youth scrawl the bathroom message, presented boxes of materials found on a search of the Biehn house in suburban Buckingham and said no other conclusion was plausible than the boy's intent to make a bomb.

Police witnesses and bomb experts said the teenager had most of the elements for a bomb except a large quantity of something to ignite it, like the magnesium thermite he had bought months before. That's the material, said the defence, that was used on the tree stump.

The judge was arranging for psychological evaluations and background checks to find out "what makes Travis Biehn tick" and help determine his sentence.

He could remain in custody until his reaches the age of 21. :o

Defence lawyer Bill Goldman said Tuesday his client could have been examined before the verdict if the judge felt he didn't know enough about him.

"We would have co-operated in any way possible with a screening and with the probation officer assigned to him."

Goldman accuses District Attorney Diane Gibbons of publicly trying the youth before his trial and stirring nationalistic sentiment, telling reporters he was anti-American and pointing to the "I am Canadian" T-shirt he wore to his first court appearance.

"That's unfair," he said. "There were two trials. The first one was in the media."

Family friend Cathy Block, a composer who knows the youth from a local theatre group, said "there was no presumption of innocence" before Monday's hearing.

"We are shocked, devastated and frightened," said Block, who sat through the trial. "I can't imagine how anyone sitting in that courtroom could come out thinking he's guilty."

Some supporters blamed "hysteria" generated by the Columbine school killings and the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, for such strong public reaction in the case, with some residents saying the family should leave.

"If it wasn't for Brant's job," said Biehn, "I would move back." [color:red]IDIOT!!!

Her son, she said, is "very connected to his Newfoundland heritage" and there's nothing wrong with that.

"You love your own country. There's a lot of Americans who would prefer to live in Canada."

The Biehns, originally from Corner Brook, moved to Halifax and Montreal before leaving Canada for the U.S. eight years ago. Brant works as a marketing director for the giant pharmaceutical company Merck.

I've read a few reports on this case. Apparently people were really bent out of shape about the "I Am Canadian" T-shirt. [color:purple]The nerve of that crazy Canuck!

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Crazy thing is that it's just a small but critical mass of people throwing the country off the rails (and they certainly don't see it that way). Not unlike what might happen in Canada too, I guess, with Herr Harper et al. That madness is unfortunately contageous. Nothing frightens like fear.

But I always think - Orange County alone produced both Richard Nixon and Frank Zappa. Who went down in shame?

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Excellent point!

That also reminds me that friends of mine have a little girl who is going to be a year old on July 6th. They were so excited to find out that Jamieson shares her birthday with Ghandi. There have been jokes since that she is destined for greatness with respect to peace keeping and humanitarian efforts. We later realized that she shares her birthday with Dubya as well. All bets are off!

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Oops Dave! I'm a liar. :blush: I wrote Ghandi, but I meant the Dalai Lama. Eek! Sorry about that. (Ghandi is October 2nd if memory serves...which apparently it doesn't). :P

July 6th was a wonky day. We were also blessed with none other than Sylvester Stallone. I guess, for my friend's little girl, anything's possible. She could live for peace & freedom, money & control or a highly successful career based on a mediocre talent. Poor, poor Rocky. I'm sure that somewhere, high upon a mountain of money, you will find an aging man who's feelings have just been hurt.

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