Monday, February 25, 2008

Criminal Profiling Topic of the Day: No Country is, quite simply, No Good

Everyone is raving today and claiming the Oscars have finally got it right because No Country for Old Men nailed the awards. I, however, am not thrilled. This means I am either out of tune with what people today think has merit or I am that little boy who says "But the emperor is naked!" Why No Country for Old Men won four Oscars and why almost every critic and filmgoer thinks this film is a masterpiece is totally beyond me. I hated the film. I really hated it.

Let me qualify my film tastes because if I only think movies like Mary Poppins are good, then one could understand I have limited scope and No Country would just be too far outside my mindset. This is not the case, however. I love "Reservoir Dogs" which would eliminate the idea I cannot handle a movie with blood, violence, and sick psychopathy. I also have always put the Coen brothers at the top of my favorite directors list: Blood Simple (clever mystery and great film noir styling), Fargo (gotta love the characters), The Great Lebowski (quirky issues), and even, O' Brother...because it was an amazingly feel good film that had one smiling when you came out of the theatre (quite the opposite of how I felt after No Country).

So, I saw No Country the minute it hit the theatres, before there was a buzz or any expections one way or the other. I went alone as well, so I had no one to worry about liking a Coen flick. I had popcorn and my soda and a good seat. Nothing helped me like this film. I hated it from first killing scene to the bitter grueling end. I thought it was gratuitously violent, pointless and terribly boring. It was nothing, in my opinion, but a teenage boy style gore film that dragged on and on. I found it offensive, to my sense of decency, my intelligence and my use of time. I was most offended that directors I respected had fallen so far from good film making that they jumped on the gore film obsession train out there and put together such a vile, useless film. I guessed maybe they were in a dual midlife crisis and desired to be cool "young" dudes again. I dunno.

I figured I was not going to be alone. A lot of people don't like the Coen's movies anyway, so I figured they would be trashed over this film. I figured many would be offended by the sickness of the film and the gore freaks, even if they like the killing scenes, would be bored by the tediousness of the rest of the film. I figured the film would bomb.

But, then I kept hearing the Oscar buzz, about how great No Country was and critic after critic rang out its praises. I thought, wtf? Did we see the same film? I googled all the way to the end of the search results and I googled the blogs searching for someone else out there in the vast universe who thought the film stunk. I found a few folks who felt as I did about the film, but, only a few.

I can't figure it out. If you hated this movie, please, give me a holler. In a year where the only other movie getting constant rave reviews was Superbad, No Country seems to seal the fate of the direction the American movie industry is going...straight into the crapper. No Country for Old Men may indicate this will become No Country for Decent Movie Going and the award for sending us to join the French goes to ::drumroll:: Joel and Ethan Coen::applause::.

Criminal Profiler Pat Brown

Friday, February 15, 2008

Criminal Profiling Topic of the Day: Another School Shooting ::Yawn::

Gosh, whiz, a bunch of kids got shot down again while trying to get an education. That sucks. Wonder what the gunman's problem was. There will be a vigil tonight. Then we will bring in some grief counselors and the healing will begin for those lucky enough not to get shot. I guess a memorial wall will be constructed for the students that weren't so lucky. The sports events will go on because we can't let this get us down. There will be, of course, a moment of silence for the victims. Go, team! WHERE OR WHERE IS THE OUTRAGE AND THE DEMAND FOR THAT KILLINGS BE STOPPED?

WAKE UP AMERICA! Six more innocent students have lost their lives forever. Their familes have had their lives destroyed forever. This is not a couple of bad days for the college because a bunch of kids are came down with the flu. The only thing this most recent mass murder has in common with a virus is that it is sickness. This is a truth that we in the United States are ignoring over and over again.

Imagine this:

A man opens his mailbox and dies of anthrax. We are curious and worried.
A week later a woman opens her mailbox and dies of anthrax. We are very worried.
Another week goes by a third person opens up his mailbox and dies of anthrax. The country goes into a panic.

Now imagine this:

A armed youth walks into a school and opens fire killing twenty students. We shake our heads.
A week later a youth walks into a school and opens fire killing ten students. We shake our heads.
Another week later a youth walks into a school and opens fire killing fifteen students. We shake our heads.


The petri dishes are our disfuntional families and our irresponsible society. The contaminants are anti-life ideations with various presentations: death metal music, gore films, violent video games, and a constant stream of violence though the Internet and television. Add in negligent parents, cowed teachers, drugs, easily accessible guns, and a lack of morals and ethics, and it should be clear that our country is cultivating antisocial spores who are growing into full blown hateful sociopathic individuals who want to destroy the society who made them.

This is not the usual disease created in poverty and need, at least not the kind of poverty and need we associate with gang violence, drug crimes and prostitution. This new disease is being created in middle class, well-fed, well educated America because the poverty is one of morals and the need is one of decency, parenting, and responsibility.

This plague of homegrown terrorists is a far greater threat to our society than any terrorist from oversease. While we worry about far off madrassas creating suicide bombers, we are ignoring the mulitude of "MegaDeath Madrassas" we have created right here in the United States, right under our own eyes and in our own children's bedrooms.

WAKE UP AMERICA! The terrorist you need to fear lives next door and he is a twenty-year old white boy named Timmy.

Criminal Profiler Pat Brown

Monday, February 4, 2008

Criminal Profiling Topic Of The Day: The Other Side Of The Coin

My long fascination with the use of DNA in forensic science has led me to contemplate the subject of genetically engineered persons. In all of the above examples, these individuals had some type of physical or mental imperfection. Yet they gave us some of the greatest gifts that society enjoys today through their talent, intellect, and scientific and artistic abilities. For example, Franklin Delano Roosevelt was one of our greatest presidents, bringing our country out of the great Depression by passing minimum wage laws, creating the Social Security Administration, starting initiatives to replant our country's forests, and promoting the arts. FDR was also confined to a wheelchair after being stricken with polio. If there was a television in every living room in the United States as there is today, it is doubtful that American voters would have elected a man in a wheelchair to lead our country. It is difficult to imagine how this would have altered our involvement in World War II, and consequently, the entire course of our nation’s history.

What makes the people shown in the above cartoon different from anyone else with the same conditions and diseases or even people without any of these afflictions? Is it an inner strength, a will to over overcome adversity? If so, could this strength of will be a result of factors such as environment, experience, or interactions with other people? Could it be some kind of inherited gene, or a combination of all of these things? The truth is we can't be sure. The human race is made up of individuals, each one unique. This is true not only in our DNA and in genetics, but also in something we call the soul, or the human spirit.

In reality, cloning takes place every day, all around us- even in us. For instance, the cells of our skin are constantly reproducing, creating exact copies of other skin cells. Many organisms reproduce by asexual reproduction, creating new organisms by making exact copies of themselves, which can be considered cloning. Our crops can be genetically modified in order to resist disease, pests, and to have more nutritional value. Scientists have attempted to clone mammals for many years. Some have even been successful after many failed efforts at a cost of millions of dollars. The method used is called nuclear transfer. This involves removing the nucleus of a cell, which contains the organism’s DNA, from the donor cell and implanting it in an unfertilized egg. However, can this truly be considered a clone? Even if the nucleus is removed and implanted without damaging any of the genetic material, it must still interact with the cytoplasm of the unfertilized egg host, which interprets the DNA encoding.

In the case of humans and cloning, the preferred subject would be intelligent, and healthy in mind and body. However, the cloned individual would have none of the experiences and memories of the original person. So we must consider what constitutes a “preferred subject” and what doesn't. Should it be based solely on an individual's physical and intellectual attributes, or does the spirit and the inner self come into play- their emotions, thoughts, ambitions, experiences, and their ability to overcome life’s adversities?

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Criminal Profiling Topic of the Day: An Interesting Argument for the Death Penalty

The Federal Bureau of Justice Statistics estimates that by the year 2030, one-third of the prison population will be geriactric. The geezers behind bars are getting sympathy from some folks out there as they visualize the poor old fellahs hobbling around the jail with younger thugs pushing and shoving them around. Some of these men claim they are not receiving proper medical care and forced to do work that they are no longer able to physically handle. My heart doesn't bleed much for these psychopaths as I am sure their hearts weren't bleeding as their victims' hearts were (as they plunged knives through them).

However, ignoring any argument over whether these inhuman beings deserve any kind care in their twilight years, we must still deal with the fact that the cost of housing these felons is rising every year. It is expensive.

This fact has led some to say they should be released back to the community, that they are now harmless old men and society won't suffer if they are let back out.

Oh, no? A psychopath is always a psychopath and even wheelchair bound killers can violently attack someone or engage in verbal abuse and manipulation. I have worked in hospitals and walked out on patients who posed a threat to me if they weren't in handcuffs (lean over to check their breathing and get a pencil in the eye), thrown urinals at me, and let off stream after stream of vulgar or nasty thoughts.

So, if one lets these creeps out, someone is going to have to deal with them. Would you want one living in the nursing home with you? Would you want to take care of such a person? I bet nurses and family members would hardly be thrilled to have these old killers dumped on them. Furthermore, the cost financially to society on the outside is hardly going to be any cheaper than prison.

My opinion is that the only good psychopathic murderer is a dead one. The death penalty would cover this just fine except for the many folks who think killing killers is cruel and unusual punishment. But just think, if we DID have a well-enforced penalty, we wouldn't HAVE a geriatric population in our prisons. Not only would we reduce the prison population but we would reduce the numbers who are the worst of the worst and make prisons a much safer place for those living and working in them.

The death penalty saves lives: innocent ones on the outside because a dead offender is not going to recidivate, prison guards who risk their lives daily keeping control of these creatures, and other less violent prisoners who might actually return to society and become decent citizens.

Not only does the death penalty make life safer for all of us, if we execute killers quickly enough, the death penalty would save us a whole lot of money as well. I say this is one great argument in favor of the death penalty. Can I get an amen?

Criminal Profiler Pat Brown

Friday, February 1, 2008

Criminal Profiling Topic of the Day: "There is a reason they call your mouth a trap, Joran."

A while back I got a bit of flack because I suggested Kate McCann might do herself a favor if she just shut up. Some thought I was being rude. But shutting up is often the smartest thing to do: not just speaking carefully, or toning it down, but just shutting the hell up because opening one's mouth is a good way to let stuff come out that will get you in trouble and make you look bad.

Joran van der Sloot should have followed this bit of advice himself. He has been on Greta Van Susteran, he has been on "A Current Affair" (where I tore him to shreds because of the stupid statements he made and the behaviors he exhibited), and now he apparently has been chatting up someone who had a recording device attached...and he is in one heck of a barrel of hot oil (and I do rather enjoy the visual)which may well cost him his skin.

Apparently, a journalist, one Mr. Peter DeVries of Holland, has some sound bite of Joran admitting he had sex with Natalee Holloway (in spite of his Current Affair interview where he parroted Bill Clinton's lies), she somehow died thereafter (and I doubt of sheer happiness), and he disposed of her body with a little help from his friends.

Oops! Don't you hate it when you accidentally let the cat out of the bag, Joran? He could claim there was no cat in the bag, but now he has opened his mouth yet again and clearly admitted to the existence of the statements because he is claiming he lied (yet again) when he made them.

It is only a matter of forty-eight hours before we find out if Joran will be hauled back to Aruba to face the music. I surely hope this time the symphony gets a full performance.

I have never doubted Joran killed Natalee during a rape; she didn't want sex, he did. He pinned her down, she died of suffocation in the sand. Joran's homies helped him get rid of the evidence. The one thing you can say for sure is that Joran sure had great friends. I doubt he would have done the same if the situation had been reversed.

I can't wait for Sunday and it's not because the SuperBowl is airing. I want to see justice finally takes its course.

Criminal Profiler Pat Brown
February 1, 2008