AmeliaHarper wrote:I just read through all of the discussions and noticed that most people have said that 12-13 year olds don't understand this kind of thing *Cough* I discovered this story when i was 12 *Cough* She was the only one who told someone about it yet her mum chose to dismiss it. The cake thing however, is a huge joke. Even if Sylvia was malnourished I really do not believe she would take the cake from Judy in front of everyone who was abusing her.
Amelia makes a valid point about 12/13 knowing the difference between right and wrong. In the UK there was a case where two 10 year old boys abducted, tortured and murdered a 2 year old boy named James Bulger. In the case the question was asked because of the boys age could they be held responsible for their actions. I think the technical term is called doli incapax. Two of the psychiatrist argued that both boys Robert Thompson and Jon Venables knew that taking James from his mother and killing him was wrong, therefore full aware of what they were doing.
In Judy case I think she was aware, what she was doing was wrong, but I feel her mother is more at fault than her. Judy had brought up what was happening to sylvia a number of times at home, yet her mother dismissed or refused to listen to her daughter. In one of the books I read when Judy came home saying to her mother that children were kicking and punching Sylvia her mother response was they were punishing her and dismissed the situation as a disciplinary action. Clearly Judy mother was a unfit parent, not only did she think punching and kicking someone is acceptable behaviour but that fact she allowed her own daughter, visit a house she knew was dangerous regularly. If the woman didn't even have her own child welfare at heart why would she intervene in stopping Sylvia abuse.
In the article Judy says her mother cried at Sylvia grave, not sure why or the motive behind it, but the overall feel I got from this article was a desperate attempt from Judy to redeem herself and her family. At the start she talks about befriending Jenny because she felt sorry for her because of the bullying she received, to then join a pack of bullies doesn't really make sense. If she knew bullying was wrong why did she constantly go over to the Baniszewski house? Clearly her and Jenny were not friends, the fact she didn't know Jenny had a sister or what her name was doesn't sound as though there was a friendship there.
I can image once the neighbours and school learn't of Judy and her mother role in the torture they became outcast themselves, and the bases of this article is to say to people we not monsters really.