It’s just money, is it really worth a life?

Apparently these two aspiring young criminals thought so.

According to prosecutors, Stewart and Ninham ran up behind the victim Dec. 22 and knocked him to the ground. Ninham kicked the victim and Stewart punched him in the face, breaking his glasses, before the victim handed over the seven cents in his pocket, prosecutors said. The two teens had handguns, which Stewart later said were BB guns, prosecutors said.

Seven. Cents.

They physically assaulted an elderly man, struck in a way that placed him in real danger of dying from any injuries they might have inflicted (kicks like that can break bones, and the elderly tend not to recover well from broken bones, and occasionally die from them), threatened his life with deadly weapons (even if they never planned to actually kill him, the threat was there, and BB guns can kill), all over what turned out to be only seven cents.

So, how much money or property is a life worth? As I’ve said before, the criminal has already made that decision. As the victim, you cannot know what he has decided until he either leaves or kills you. The attack itself shows that whatever the criminal is after is worth a life. Your job as the victim is to make sure the cost isn’t your life.

As an aside, notice the headline general attitude at the source article? They’re trying to paint this as some kind of miscarriage of justice, because ‘it was only seven cents.’

Da-shiang bao-tza shr duh lah doo-tze*.

These twits violently assaulted a man and threatened him with death in order to take what wasn’t theirs. The fact that they only ended up with seven cents is completely irrelevant. The only thing the judge did that I don’t agree with is to treat the other guy differently because he took a plea. They both committed the same violent acts, they should both face the same punishment.


* Translates as “The explosive diarrhea of an elephant”

[Source: Article at, retrieved 8/31/11]

[New category added: Is it worth a life?]

Leave a comment


  1. As I was said before “Give me X or I will kill/harm you!” Should simply be read as “I will kill/harm you” as anybody who makes such threats is without honor and cannot be trusted.


    Especially given that these assholes would have burned a whole lot less calories bringing two cans to the redemption center and needed three extra cents.

    This was all about the violence, and that sort of behavior should often prove fatal for the aggressors.

  2. Good to see that Pinyinary link is being put to good use… šŸ˜‰

    More topically, on the one hand, money is not worth a life, and criminals should stop trying to kill people to take it. On the other hand, money is the physical manifestation of a life, and stealing money from another person is, in effect and reality, stealing part of that person’s life from them that they will never get back. Shooting slavers is considered “acceptable” in most parts of the world.

    And, finally, my life is worth more to me than the life of some scumbag trying to relieve me of that life, and I will act accordingly. Period.


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