Monday, May 3, 2010

Stupider and Stupider

(by R.P.Edwards)

Cyber-crime is so much fun
Punishment, so seldom done
The work of smart and savvy folk
And when they’re caught…
It’s all a joke!
So what! they steal, defame, defraud!
We think they’re cool
Their efforts, laud
That is, until, they jack “our” car
And then
We see them, as they are

It used to be hard to be stupid.  For instance, if you wanted to tell somebody off in writing, you’d have to actually get paper, pen, and place; you’d have to write, address, stamp and then you’d have to get up off your keister and drop the “hate mail” in the…mail.  A lot of effort.  And, of course, if you “really” wanted to mess with this individual--as in accessing their personal files and post office box--that would require  “breaking and entering” and, even the most mindless malevolents among us would realize that this kind of behavior … is criminal.

Enter modern times:  David Kernell, the then twenty year old son of a Tennessee State lawmaker, an economics major at the University of Tennessee, and definitely “not” a Sarah Palin fan, well, this lad, in prankish fashion, “hacked” her e-mail account (from the comfort of his room) and then bragged of his “accomplishment” as he shared the formerly private “information” with the world.  It wasn’t so funny when the FBI came to the door.

You know, it’s kind of weird.  Even though we perceive that our (I’m talking about the universal “us”) actions are wrong, we seem to downplay the gravity of our computer capers due to the ease of execution.  Just a few button pushes…and presto!  And, to make matters worse, once it’s out there; it’s out there (reminds me of an old Flintstone's episode where Fred tried to retrieve a scathing letter he had mistakenly written to his boss).  Sadly, however, when teens commit suicide due to internet hi jinx, it’s then we take the medium a little more seriously.  Thankfully, in this case, nothing like that happened. 

So, what to do with the lad.  Although the book could be thrown, I recommend (as if my recommendation means anything) a light sentence; about one year behind bars.  Then, to drive home the point, another year of community service in, say,…Wasilla.  Hopefully that would be sufficient to rehabilitate the outlaw.  For, I’d hate to see the young man’s life thrown away for a few minutes of stupidity.  After all, it’s so much easier…to be stupid these days.

That’s what I think?  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

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