In a panic, she almost sat down and gave up. But no, if she were quick, if she kept to the trees, they wouldn’t find her. She’d been running around these woods her whole life, climbing, hiking, kayaking on the river, camping in all kinds of weather. But these guys were trained military. They probably had guns—and she couldn’t trust anymore that they wouldn’t shoot at anything that moved. Now she knew what it felt like to be hunted.
The predictions of “super-predators” proved wildly inaccurate. The juvenile population in America increased from 1994 to 2000, but the juvenile crime rate declined, leading academics who had originally supported the “super-predator” theory to disclaim it. In 2001, the surgeon general of the United States released a report labeling the “super-predator” theory a myth and stated that “[t]here is no evidence that young people involved in violence during the peak years of the early 1990s were more frequent or more vicious offenders than youths in earlier years.” This admission came too late for kids like Trina, Ian, and Antonio. Their death-in-prison sentences were insulated from legal challenges or appeals by a maze of procedural rules, statutes of limitations, and legal barricades designed to make successful postconviction challenges almost impossible.
“If the lion, in all its dark, nocturnal otherness, in all its light, internal sameness, does not exist for future generations, if we destroy its habitat, or call open season on it, what could we possibly find to replace it? It is precisely because we fear large predators that we need them. They hold within them so many things we have lost, or are on the verge of losing, personally and collectively, permanently and forever. If we sacrifice the fear, we also sacrifice the strength, the wildness, the beauty, the awe.”
–Animal, Mineral, Radical: Essays on Wildlife, Family, and Food by BK Loren
“…There is something about knowing that someone is taking pleasure in giving you incredible pain . . . with no remorse. It changes how you see yourself; it changes what you can believe of other people. It changes everything.“
–Blood of Dragons (Rain Wilds Chronicles Book 4) by Robin Hobb