Mr. wOw Ponders The Ten Commandments (Minus Anne Baxter and Chuck Heston)

Could American law really be derived from the Hebrew scriptures?

Over the weekend, Mr. wOw was irritably sweaty in the unpleasant late September warmth and humidity. Couldn’t read much, and even TV palled. But while half-watching CNN, I saw there was yet another lawsuit filed by the ACLU against a high school for displaying the Ten Commandments, up against copies of American documents, with the idea of relaying to the students that American law — the declaration of Independence and the Constitution, etc. — were derived from the Hebrew scriptures: the word of God.

Some guy representing the high school was on, and he said straight out: “All of America’s laws are based on the Biblical text, the Ten Commandments.” This struck Mr. wOw as, well, not quite correct. But I turned to the much more clever B., and said: “Isn’t American law based on British law, and isn’t British law based on Roman law?” B. replied: “And here I thought you only knew the color of each of Elizabeth Taylor’s wedding dresses!” (B. was sort of kidding, but he knows I love a shallow subject.)

Furthermore, B. said: “I really wonder which version of the Ten Commandments they are even thinking about; there are a number of wordings. I suppose the King James version of the Bible, translated from the Hebrew and Greek by the English in the 1600’s. That’s not quite the word of God, if one is going to take the Bible literally. The Commandments are not the same in Catholic, Protestant or Jewish Bibles. Sometimes they are not in the same order.”

Hmmmm … I thought. (This is usually where deep thinking ends for Mr. wOw — “Hmmmm!”) I hadn’t looked at the Ten Commandments in quite some time and I wondered, really, how they stacked up as comparative to our legal system, the laws we live by. So I got out my trusty Bible — shocked I even had one, right? — and turned to Exodus 20: 1-17. You’ll find 16 “commandments” here, because that’s how my Bible does it: with considerable lead-in, lots of gravitas.

  1. “And God spake all these words, saying …” Okay, this is just the intro, we know He is about to lay something heavy on us.
  2. “I am the LORD thy, God which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.” This is kind of a guilt trip, but he is God.
  3.  “Thou shalt have no other Gods before me.” We get it, we get it! Three commandments in, and I don’t see much that relates to our current form of government.
  4. “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven and earth, or that is beneath it, is that is in the water under the earth.” Uh, no graven images? Gee, I think we see a lot of those. Far as I know, they ain’t against the law.
  5. “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them or serve them. For I the LORD thy God am a jealous God.” So, now we have a bit of a fix on God’s temperament. Still and all, lots of people “bow down” to graven images in churches and such. I don’t believe we have any laws against that. (If so, a lot of Catholics would be languishing in jails.)
  6.  “And shewing mercy unto thousands of that love me, and keep my commandments.” Translation: do as I say and you won’t be smote.
  7. “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless.” Well, it’s not very nice to take the Lord’s name in vain, I guess, if one is religious. But I don’t recall seeing it in the Constitution.
  8. “Remember the Sabbath Day, and keep it holy.” Again, a religious issue. Just don’t think it’s illegal not to keep the Sabbath.
  9. “Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work.” God certainly had a plan, but … eh — are those who don’t work six days liable to be jailed or fined?
  10. “But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, not thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, not thy stranger that is within thy gates.” God is quite specific here. And if I had a man or maidservant I sure wouldn’t let them labor. Still and all, lots of people have to work on Sunday. I haven’t seen them carted off yet.
  11. “Honour thy father and thy mother.” An admirable goal, not always easily achieved. But we should try. Sigh! Still I have ask: This commandment affects U.S. law how?
  12. “Thou shalt not kill.” Open to interpretation for sure. After all, if “kill” was the operative word, what would, say, Rick Perry do for a living? Sometimes this one is changed to “Thou shalt not murder.” And of course we shouldn’t. But I think murder has been a crime for centuries.
  13. “Thou shalt not commit adultery.” Adultery was once a crime, but it ain’t anymore. Too many people did it. Mostly Elizabeth Taylor.
  14. “Thou shalt not steal.” That’s right. But as with murder, thievery has been punishable as a crime for ages — they used to cut people’s hands off in the good old days, in Europe. I don’t think the U.S. legal system has much of a claim on that one.
  15. “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.” Essentially, don’t lie. Good to know we made truth-telling so very, very vital in our government process. Because the government always tells us the truth, right?
  16. “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house … not thy neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, not his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is thy neighbor’s.” Covet. Well, that means a kind of jealousy. “I want what he has.” And of course we shouldn’t covet. We should go out and get what we want for ourselves with our own wits and hard work. But, ahhhhh … where do the laws in the U.S. Constitution deal with being envious, jealous, coveting? That’s kind of an in-the-mind thing.

Well, what do have here? I respect everybody’s religious or spiritual beliefs. Or lack thereof. But the Ten Commandments (or the Sixteen Statements of a Very Chatty Deity) have nothing to do with American law. It’s just terrif if people want to abide by these commandments — although good luck on the killing if you support the army, and better luck on coveting thy neighbor’s ass. (We won’t even get into other Biblical strictures such as wearing clothes of different fabrics, or eating shellfish.)

But these commandments have nothing to do with the legal, democratic structure of the United States of America. They are religious homilies to be adhered to as such. Or not.

Separation of Church and State. Now that is an American tradition.

38 comments so far.

  1. avatar Andy C says:

    Mr. Wow — first of all, where have you been?  Missed you.

    No, the ten commandments have no bearing on  America’s laws; check out the latest in political mis-deeds.  Perhaps if there was a commandment that said “Thou Shalt Not Get Caught”, perhaps then.  And, yes, there is supposed to be a separation of church and state but there never seems to be an actual separation of same. 

    It would be nice if we would follow a good moral code; common sense……but it doesn’t appear to be happening.

    As well, in an article I just read, it points out how each translation of the old languages yielded yet another meaning.  Too much is left for interpretation and we know how politicians can interpret (i.e., not having sex).

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Andy…

      Thanks!  It’s nice to  be missed.  (I’d like to be here everyday, but I’ve got this other job…)

      Yes, the separation of church and state thing–how’s that working out for us?  Not too good, actually. 

  2. avatar Chris Glass` says:

    Most of the founding fathers were not Christians they were Deists known as men of enlightenment. They specifically did not bring religion into the Constitution and Declaration of Independence except to declare Freedom of Religion for all. They knew that if they did our society would end up bound by the same strings as Sharia laws being interpreted by whomever was in charge at the time. They wanted to make sure that no religion or belief system could become an official religion. They stated that by declaring that no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification for any office or public trust in the United States. It was stated more than once that there would be a separation of church and state to ensure freedom for all. They knew that fanatics from any sect could change and control our country.

    Almost every religion has a version of the Ten Commandments or as Mr. Wow pointed out often more than ten. While they are excellent guidelines as a moral code they were never meant to be part of our national Constitution or declaration of Independence. I believe there are truths in all religions and belief systems but do not want my life ruled by any sect Christian, Muslim, Jewish or Hindu. I hope that never happens.

  3. avatar J G says:

    Mr. Wow, you had me at 13. Too, too funny.

    But as it turns out, The Separation Of Church and State, (all caps, I don’t know why I used all caps in the title) is just a “concept”. I know. I was shocked to learn this too.

    From Wikipedia (If Wikipedia can be trusted)

    The concept of separation of church and state refers to the distance in the relationship between organized religion and the nation state. The term is an offshoot of the phrase, “wall of separation between church and state,” as written in Thomas Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists Association in 1802. The original text reads: “…I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.” Jefferson reflected his frequent speaking theme that the government is not to interfere with religion.[1] The phrase was quoted by the United States Supreme Court first in 1878, and then in a series of cases starting in 1947. The phrase “separation of church and state” itself does not appear in the United States Constitution. The First Amendment states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Prior to 1947, however, separation of church and state was not considered part of the constitution; indeed in 1870s and 1890s unsuccessful attempts were made to amend the constitution to guarantee separation of church and state, a task to be accomplished not by constitutional amendment but by judicial fiat in 1947. [2]

  4. avatar J G says:

    Can anyone decipher this for me, as my mind is too busy today…

    “…..The First Amendment states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof……”

  5. avatar J G says:

    Ok, I’ve read my above quote 5 times. To me, it means that the high school in question cannot be sued successfully, as it has the right to exercise it’s beliefs…..

    ?

  6. avatar Lila says:

    Can o’ worms, JG. Here’s some light reading:

    caselaw.lp.findlaw [dot com]/data/constitution/amendment01/

    One thing I like about the First Amendment is that there is not supposed to be a”religious test” for public office, and yet… it seems absolutely required for candidates to declare their faith in God, to make the occasional appearance in Church, and to sprinkle their speeches with references to God or the Divine Power or some other indication of their piety, calling down His blessings upon America.

    And that really bothers me, because prayer is NOT an acceptable course of action in steering our country to success. If there is no God, it amounts to just actively hoping everything works out. If there IS a God, it’s both arrogant and lazy to keep asking for His intercession when He gave us free will and brains to observe, make decisions, and act accordingly. Ugh.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Lila…

      Give me an unmarried unbeliever for Prez  anytime. 

      As soon as anyone  starts  talking about their relationship with God, I begin my relationship with twirling the ends of my hair and looking off to the side, bored and unconvinced.

      • avatar Dan S. says:

        This reminds me of something Sam Harris said when the last president was in office and it always amused me:

        “George Bush says he speaks to god every day, and christians love him for it. If George Bush said he spoke to god through his hair dryer, they would think he was mad. I fail to see how the addition of a hair dryer makes it any more absurd.”

  7. avatar J G says:

    The First Amendment (Amendment I) to the United States Constitution is part of the Bill of Rights. The amendment prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion, abridging the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, interfering with the right to peaceably assemble or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances.

    Originally, the First Amendment applied only to laws enacted by the Congress. However, starting with Gitlow v. New York, 268 U.S. 652 (1925), the Supreme Court has held that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment applies the First Amendment to each state, including any local government.

  8. avatar J G says:

    I don’t even understand The First Amendment. It seems as if it can go both ways.
    Really, I’m not very clever at deciphering this sort of thing.

  9. avatar mary burdt says:

    Mr. WoW, I have really missed you on this site. It is simply not the same without your searing wit. Try to post more often.

    Our government based on the Ten Commandments…ridiculous.

  10. avatar Rho says:

    Mr. Wow.  I am Jewish.  All I am going to say to you is “L’Shana Tovah” — may the year 5772 be better than the year 5771.

  11. avatar HauntedLady says:

    This is the best response I’ve seen in a long time to the misinformation spread about the Commandments and the U.S. Constitution. Please try to post more often as your good sense and fine wit is sorely needed. I understand completely, though, about the warmth and humidity; it tends to immobilize me.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Haunted Lady…

      Thank you.  And I really was so icky and sweaty, I never thought the issue would hold my attention that day.  But then I got into my “outraged” mode and that trumped the humidty.  (Even B. was surprised when I started rooting around my room for the Bible!) 

      Today I’m a rag again. 

      • avatar D C says:

        Humidity (living in it day in, day out) does wonders for the skin.  Not so much for the hair, but I’ll take frizzy hair over wrinkles any day. 

      • avatar Mr. Wow says:

        Dear DC…

        Humidity might be great for your skin, but mine is oily and acne-prone.  That, combined with shirts soaked with sweat…not pretty. Not ready for my close-up.

        As for my hair(s)—they just go limp. 

  12. avatar Baby Snooks says:

    Welllllllllllllllllllllllll I was never married sooooooooooo technically speaking I never committed adultery and never say “g*dd*mmit* in public and I don’t think “golly doodles” means anything “vain” in any language and apparently they didn’t gossip back then so I seem to be safe both in the eyesof god and under the Constitution. Except maybe for those graven images you’re not supposed to worship. A couple of whom were “greek gods” but I suspect they don’t matter. They were only for a weekend. Here and there. So maybe I’ll spend a weekend in Limbo. Certainly worth the weekends in Heaven.  Of course under the Constitution those were “in the pursuit of happiness” so I’ll pretend I was an atheist on weekends.

    Since the Ten Commandments and the Constitution allows for gossip, by the way, I wait patiently for you or Margo or someone to bring up “the trial of the century” which has commenced in Los Angeles. Along with the “Jackson Friends, Family, and Other Assorted Strangers” show that premiered last night on Piers Morgan.  Last night, it was best friend Kathy Hilton.  Tonight Dionne Warwick. Who probably will return with one of her ”Psychic Friends” who will first channel Elizabeth Taylor so she can “continue the conversation” with Arnie Klien and then channel Michael himself who will have the final word finally. If he’s managed to detox yet.  Rumor is Piers Morgan did ask Diana Ross. Who continues to deny having known any of them.  Smart lady.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Baby…

      I saw Kathy Hilton.  Mother of Paris, need we say or think more?

      SO glad Miss Taylor is finally out of this.  No insane tweeting to fear.   Though she might have had good intentions, I do not think La Liz was on the right track in her pal-ship with Mr. Jackson.

      By the way–Piers Morgan.  Makes me long for Larry King in such a big way.  What a condescending, smarmy piece of work Mr. Morgan is.

      I’ll meet you in Limbo.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I promised someone I would be nice. But, well, I’m not in the will so what the hell, you know? I don’t think she was in her right mind let alone on the right track.

        Kathy Hilton. Always a special treat. Wanting to know why Conrad Murray didn’t call someone. Well, you know, he wasn’t the only one who watched this disintegration of a human being. Why didn’t any of the others call someone ? At least call each other? As for this apparenty attempt to portray Michael Jackson as some innocent victim of Conrad Murray, well, the pharmacy records would indicate otherwise. He was an addict long before Conrad Murray entered the picture. And not only according to the pharmacy records but according o Deepak Chopra on Larry King during the first run of the “Jackson Friends, Family, and Other Assorted Stranges” show. Why didn’t HE call someone? Like the state board to report all the doctors who were prescribing to a known addict? The basis of the charges against Conrad Murray is basically “neglect” which could be used to charge everyone else. Including Kathy Hilton. 

        Can’t wait for Paris and Prince’s real father to take the stand. He’s on the defense list. The prosecution has pulled some surprises apparently. I suspect the defense plans to pull a surprise with Arnie Klein. 

        Larry King would never have risked the ire of the Jacksons by having patients of Conrad Murray on the air to counter some of the “allegations” and it does seem strange that this money-hungry vulture has performed heart surgery on quite a few patients who had no insurance and no money for free. Not oly in Las Vegas but in Houston. Something wrong with the picture as they say. Well, the picture the prosecution, and the Jacksons, want to portray.

        I do believe, by the way, that Michael Jackson was murdered. But not by Conrad Murray.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I must add that Conrad Murray nonetheless is hiding something. But everone else is as well. Whoever murdered Michael Jackson must be someone you don’t want to mess with. Or name for the obvious reason. I am so glad I never moved to Los Angeles. My impression at this point is that money buys anything and everything in Los Angeles. Including the cops and possibly the DA. It is, well, a cesspool. Enjoy as they say.

        And I still do not believe some drug-crazed suicidal black man decided to ride his bike from some seedy hotel in Hollywood to Beverly Hills to rob someone at midnight.  And just got lucky to pick an intersection on Sunset in the most heavily guarded area in all of Los Angeles where the red-light camera wasn’t working. I suspect I am not alone. But then I don’t live there. So I can say it. Others, well, I bet everyone runs red lights these days. Particularly at midnight in Beverly Hills.

    • avatar Deirdre Cerasa says:

      Baby Snooks,
      I missed that “special” broadcast and after you description, I am so sorry I did. As for your entire post; it is spectacular! Thanks for making my day.

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I missed Dionne Warwick last night which is probably good because I can stand just so much hubris. I will try to tune in tonight. I think Larry King ran for two weeks with the show. I bet Piers runs for three. Hey, go with what garners the ratings, you know?

        What I want to know is what Michael Jackson took that turned him into the “dancing machine” each night which of course probably will explain why had to take what he took in order to sleep. I do believe he was murdered. But let’s be honest. It didn’t take much to murder him. But my Miss Marple did catch something last night on one of the “legal eagle” spots. They found Propofol in his stomach. So he apparently did drink some of it. So who knows? Maybe someone did murder him not realizing he was going to overdose anyway. Much too bizarre. All of it. All of them. And my Miss Marple also caught that  Kenny Ortega apparently wrote a memo indicating Michael Jackson needed some “psychological help” which must be the understatement of the century and indicating the tour was not going to happen. So who did he send the memo to? Probably whoever murdered Michael Jackson. Not realizing Michael Jackson was going to overdose anyway. Who cares? About him or that atrocious family. I finally wrote the family off with Jermaine’s announcement that had Michael been found guilty of child molestation, they were going to whisk him off to Bahrain. So maybe they were going to disguise him as Elizabeth Taylor?  Or Faye Dunaway as Joan Crawford? That “mug shot” from when he was arrested has been forever etched in my memory. Probably in Faye Dunaway’s memory as well. Maybe he decided he wanted a Joan Crawford look and ran off to the plastic surgeon with a photo of Faye Dunaway from Mommie Dearest?

        I do feel sorry for him. And for the children. The way I feel sorry for Elizabeth Taylor. The real “money-hungry vultures” are the “friends, family and other assorted strangers” and of course the entourages.  I finally had to take a good look at a mutual friend of Elizabeth’s. Like I said, a cesspool. The only people who survive the hubris are those who get the hell out of it. Everone else ends up being drowned. By the “friends, family, and other assorted strangers.” And of course by the entourages.

  13. avatar Deirdre Cerasa says:

    Mr. WoW,
    As other have already posted, I too have missed you. A very lovely message indeed. The tone is perfect and you explanation complete. You have solved a mystery for us with wit and humor. Please, please post for us as often as you can. This Catholic girl loves what you think and what you have to say! Best of all you make me smile all the time!! Hi B.

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Deirdre…

      B. says hi, too.  He’s kinda leery of me now that walk around all day intoning “Thou shalt not” and “I am the LORD.”    On the latter he just says, “Really, Really?” 

      But seriously, I have known some great religious people in my time.  What made them great is that they never pushed their beliefs on me, or made me feel less than, because I didn’t believe.   Having true faith can bring inner peace I’ve heard, and that I do believe. 

      • avatar Irreverent says:

        Dear Mr. Wow:
         
        Having true faith does indeed bring inner peace; however, we’re only human (read: imperfect), so sustaining that true faith 24/7 is no easy task. (Heck, more often than not, just sustaining it for a single hour is hard enough for so many of us!) Like Jesus said in Matthew 26:38-45: “the Spirit is willing, but the Flesh is weak”.
         
        I, too, absolutely loved your analysis of the Ten Commandments and how the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were not derived from these. You made your point clearly, using wit and humor, and with utmost respect for all religious and non-religious folks.
         
        Thank you, Mr. Wow! J

      • avatar Irreverent says:

        P.S.: That “J” was supposed to be a smiley face. I don’t know why it came out as a “J”…

        :-)

  14. avatar Mark Rowe says:

    Wow, Mr. Wow! The ten commandments! The only thng that God himself gave to man. But one must look at all the laws man has made. There are so many man made laws that man cannot inforce all of them, and does not do so!
    God has made it simple, it is man and his drive for getting even that has messed it up! After all with all the special interest groups, the low life lawyers, and greedy lowlifes, and everyone else who has had somthing done to them and they feel it gives them the right to inflict there grief upon everyone else! Well, it is man’s stupidity and mabby the ever more decreasing lack of oxygen in the atmosphere that is accountable for it. Uh?

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Mark….

      Hmmmm….I don’t know that God made it “so simple.”  

      Simple would be a wonderful world free of hate and crime and intolerance and poverty.  If God loves us, why does evil exist? 

      But we slog on, hoping for something after the lights go out. 

      Man is stupid, but created in God’s image, so we are told.    Not very comforting. 

      I do believe in a perfection beyond life.  If God is involved, cool. 

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        Actually we created god in our image. Which is why we have so many gods I suppose. And so many gurus.

  15. avatar Dan S. says:

    I prefer the “Ten Cultic Commandments”. Exodus 34:1 also tells the story of Moses going to the mount to carve some commandments into stone as God bides, but this set is a little more revealing about the cultcure. They include commands to destroy the crops of people who worship differently, to use your sons and the daughters of the non-believers to breed out the non-believers, etc. Speaking of your sons, you’re to give them up for a while so they can go conquer other nations in Yahweh’s name. You’re also to sacrifice firstborn male cattle to God as well as giving over each season’s first fruits: While these commandments don’t explicitly say it, priests gotta eat too. My favorite of this bunch though has to be the last one, which says that you’re not to boil a goat in its mother’s milk.

    And Mr. Wow, you only touched one side of the equation here too. What about laws that we do have that aren’t in The Ten Commandments? How about rape? Or child and spousal abuse? Or slavery? Any civil society can see that these are great wrongs, but the commandments make no mention. But this makes sense in context when you consider that the Old Testament in other parts actually explains the proper ways in which one should go about their raping and abusing and slave holding. But I digress.

    • avatar Baby Snooks says:

      The god of Abraham is a “mean old man in the sky” who created man and gave him dominion over every other living craeture including man’s chattel which includes the spouse and the child and the slave. And for those so inclined, the eunuch. The Bible doesn’t mention child or spousal abuse because, well, if man wants to beat his chattel he is allowed to. Our laws in fact did refect biblical law in terms of  our family laws reflecting chattel law until the middle of the 20th century. I believe many states did not rescind them until the mid 1970s. Unfortunately what the law says and what the law does are two different things. And we still have prosecutors and judges in this country who still believe in chattel law. So men are still alllowed to beat their wives and children. Many cops overlook abuse because, well, that’s just the way it is. Women should learn not to talk back to the man. He will put her in her place wth the back of his hand.

      We’ve come a long way. But only recently. And we have a long, long way to go still.  As long as there are those who are “fervent” in their beliefs in the god of Abraham there will be those those believe that chattel law is god’s law and so it is the law.

      The founding fathers really should have been more specific about “freedom of/from religion” and stated civil law was to be separate from religious law and not based on religious law.

    • avatar Lila says:

      Dan, great post and it really points up exactly what much of the Old Testament really is: a tribal history of people who lived thousands of years ago in the eastern Mediterranean region. Interesting how so many non-Mediterranean descendants came to be the heirs to that history, and now wrestle over the spiritual significance of ancient, foreign tribal customs in their own lives, half a world and millenia away.

      As a very small child, I was dragged to church and Sunday school and heard the sanitized versions of all the classic Bible stories. But when I read the Bible for myself at a young age, I was horrified – Jacob was a duplicitous jerk many times over, not a hero! Lot was disgusting, not a righteous man – and his daughters were little better, getting their father drunk and attempting to get pregnant by him. Angels went around impregnating the Daughters of Man (that burst my bubble on angelic behavior). Job’s suffering – and the obliteration of his numerous women, children, animals and crops – were just part of a petty little bet between God and Satan. It goes on and on. The Church glosses over the more titillating parts of the Bible, or just avoids them entirely. Can’t have people seeing for themselves. That causes questions. Lucky for them most people don’t actually read it… or think about it….

    • avatar Mr. Wow says:

      Dear Dan…

      You are correct.  I did mention of couple of minor rules of the Old Testament–wearing fabrics of two colors, shellfish…but, I too, didn’t want to digress  much.  Although I believe both those were punishable by stoning.  Rape and abuse and slaves–it was all cool. 

  16. Seen leaving. . . Footprints. . . . . . .