SocietyWatch

From the January 2014 Trumpet Print Edition

British children to start school at 2?

Britain’s educators want children to spend less time with their families and more time at school.

A recent study found that children from poor homes were 19 months behind their richer peers by the time they started school at age 5. They’re not ready to learn at school because of weak parenting, low educational attainment of parents, poor diet, poor housing and other factors. In extreme cases, children arrive at school not potty-trained, unable to talk properly and not even knowing their own names.

This new push for earlier schooling is proof that British families have already been broken.

Education Secretary Michael Gove and supporters say they are strong believers in the importance of family. But after seeing so many parents doing an appalling job, they want to bring up British children instead.

Almost all of Britain’s problems—from its bloated welfare state and huge national debt to its obesity crisis—can be traced to a breakdown in families.

Food stamp spending spree

Food stamp recipients in Louisiana thought they hit the jackpot October 11. A glitch caused their food stamp debit cards to show unlimited spending benefits. How did many of them react?

Shoppers descended on local Walmarts, pushing, shoving and fighting each other for carts and stuffing in all they could. So many shoppers crammed into the stores that police had to be called in for crowd control.

Thousands of shoppers eagerly stole as much as they could. America’s biggest retailer abetted them (although Walmart later agreed to pick up the tab), and the police did nothing except ensure that the looting was orderly and efficient.

Something is terribly wrong with a society where so many people see absolutely no problem with stealing from those trying to help them—and steal as much as possible, casually, in broad daylight for the world to see.

Drug cartels contracting U.S. soldiers

Rich Mexican drug cartels buy pretty much anything they want, and now they are buying U.S. soldiers. In September 2013, 22-year-old Michael Apodaca, a former Army private first class at Fort Bliss, Texas, was sentenced to life in prison for a $5,000 contract assassination he committed in 2009. In November, 29-year-old Army 1st Lt. Kevin Corley, based at Fort Carson, Colorado, agreed to a $50,000 assassination contract for hits in Laredo, Texas. Corley recruited his own team of assassins for the job, and he even offered the cartel tactical training and stolen U.S. weaponry.

“It is quite worrisome to have individuals with specialized military training and combat experience being associated with the cartels,” warns Stratfor’s Fred Burton” (Fox News, Aug. 1, 2013). It is a warning echoed by the fbi, which notes that other U.S. law enforcement personnel are being recruited too.

Mexican cartels are spreading across America. And in many ways, they are a self-inflicted wound. Some of its own soldiers and law enforcement officers are helping them spread their addictions and violence. But most of all, Americans’ voracious demand for illegal drugs is paying for their own self-destruction. Just like a drug addiction, America is killing itself with drug cartels, but it just can’t stop.

Can shooters be stopped?

On November 1, Paul Ciancia walked into Los Angeles International Airport.

He looked like any other passenger. He was an unemployed motorbike mechanic supposedly going to visit his sick father. His roommates didn’t notice anything wrong. One of them actually drove him to the airport. But it only took a moment for Ciancia to go from normal-appearing citizen to psychopathic murderer.

As he walked up to a Transportation Security Administration checkpoint, Ciancia opened a bag, pulled out a .223-caliber rifle and began shooting. The first agent he killed was an unsuspecting behavior detection officer trained to spot suspicious people and activity.

Eventually, armed police officers brought Ciancia down, but not before he had murdered an agent and injured three more people. It could have been much worse. Ciancia had five clips of ammunition carrying over 100 bullets.

A note written by Ciancia said, among other things, that he wanted to prove how easy it is to get a gun into the airport.

Airport Police Chief Patrick Gannon said that tsa officers are not armed, but in light of this shooting that may need to change. But will arming tsa agents make airports safe? No matter the precautions or expenditures, it’s impossible to completely protect against attacks that come out of the blue.