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Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016

Don't blame others for criminal actions

Wednesday, March 13, 2002

"In other words...it was his past that was to blame"

We have become a society of whiners, always blaming our actions on someone or something other than our own dumb mistakes. Personal responsibility and being held accountable for our own actions is no longer a social norm. Instead, we look far and wide to find something in our surroundings or our past that we can point to as the source of our actions. This lack of accountability surely must be a sign of decay in our social structure.

A trial began this week in Columbia for Deandra Buchanan, charged with three murders during a drug-induced rage two years ago. Buchanan used a shotgun to murder his girlfriend, aunt and stepfather. He faces the death penalty.

But Buchanan is typical of the growing trend in this nation. His defense centers on post-traumatic stress disorder. In other words it was not Buchanan's fault for the triple murder, it was his past that was to blame.

Buchanan's defense attorney says his client witnessed violence as a youngster and because of that, his actions should be viewed differently. His attorney says nothing about Buchanan chasing his girlfriend who was cradling two infants when she was leveled by the shotgun blast. His attorney said nothing about Buchanan emptying the shotgun, then halting to reload before he murdered again and again. Instead the attorney says his client was using cocaine on that deadly night and suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome.

I failed to mention that following the murders, Buchanan accepted a ride from a friend as he fled the murder scene. And yes, he shot the friend too. He survived however.

I am sick and tired of the excuses for criminal actions. Deandra Buchanan knew fully what he was doing on his murderous rampage. He was angry and upset and used a shotgun to solve his problems. It wasn't his past and it wasn't the drugs. It is the violent nature of a hardened criminal that is on trial, not some phony excuse concocted after the fact.

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