R Schwab remarks that this is quite a coincidence, that two occurrences that were so vanishingly rare, to the point that everyone else thought they couldn't exist, davka Reb Yonasan sat on them.
He explains that what Reb Yonasan means is what the Gemara in Sanhedrin 37b says-- that even though missas beis din is bateil, our courts are no longer empowered to administer the capital punishment described in the Torah, din missas beis din is not bateil, the reality of those forms of punishment remains true. If someone deserves a particular missas beis din, Hashem will arrange for him an accident that embodies the punishment he deserved. Here, too, R Yonason meant that he saw the grave of a 13 year old boy and the ruins of a city, and he realized that these tragic events had taken place because the boy and the city deserved the punishment of a Ben Sorer u’Moreh or an Ir Hanidachas.
The Chasam Sofer, also writing on this week’s parsha, lends names and resonance to Rav Schwab’s idea.
In Passuk 21:11, discussing the surprising legalization of violently taking a battlefield bride, the Yefas To’ar, Rashi brings from the Gemara in Kiddushin 19 that the legalization does not diminish the spiritual danger engendered by this behavior. Rashi says that if one takes a Yefas Toar, eventually he will hate her; and ultimately he will father with her a Ben Sorer u’Moreh.
The statistical association between a dsyfunctional parental matrix and criminal tendency of the children is the subject of Steven Levitt's book, Freakonomics, and earlier papers. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freakonomics
The Chasam Sofer says that if we think carefully about this, we will realize that we are all familiar with a historical example of precisely this turn of events.
Chazal tell us that Avshalom, David Hamelech's son, was born from a Yefas To'ar; Maachah, the daughter of the king of Geshur, was a Yefas To’ar that David Hamelech took as a wife. And what happened to Avshalom? Eventually, he attempted to unseat his father and take the throne, and David fled, in fear of his life, from his own son, Avshalom. (By the way, Barzilai was one of the good guys in this episode.) When Avshalom’s rebellion was defeated, and he in turn fled David’s men, his nazir-hair became entangled in a low branch, and when his donkey ran off, he remained suspended in the air, where he was soon killed by Yoav, David’s nephew and the General of his army. The Chasam Sofer points out that the ultimate end of Avshalom, the son of the Yefas To’ar, was "vesalisa oso ahl eitz," just like a Ben Soreir u’Moreh. Although the passuk (21:21) mentions sekilla for Ben Soreir, Chazal tell us that "kol haniskalin nitlin," that all those who are executed by sekilla are afterwards hanged. Now, it is true that the hanging of Avshalom is different in many respects from the hanging of a person who had Sekilla: a niskal's hanging is only after he is killed, while here, the killing was by the sword of Yoav while he was hanging. This doesn't matter. The point is that the literal meaning of the nitlin was arranged for Avshalom. The particular laws and methods of sekilla are not important; the crux of both Rav Schwab's and the Chasam Sofer's divrei Torah is that one way or another, the immutable and inexorable words of the Torah will engineer their fufillment.
The Baal Haturim here, by the way, notes that the gematria of 'Soreir' equals 'Zeh Avshalom ben David.'
Harav Shimon Krasner, the celebrated author of the renowned and encyclopedic Nachalas Shimon on Tanach, is currently staying at my house. He pointed out two interesting things. 1. Rashi's statement that Kol haniskalin nitlin is immediately disputed by the Ramban. The Ramban says that this is a daas yachid, of Rebbi Eliezer. We pasken like the Chachamim, the rabbim, who say that only the niskalin of Avodah Zarah and Megadeif are nitleh. 2. As I mention above, the hanging of Avshalom was not the tli'ah that Beis Din does after sekillah. The teli'ah of Beis Din is only after the man is dead, and it is certainly not a means of killing him, nor is he hanged and then killed while he is hanging. Rabbi Krasner pointed out that in EH 17, the Turei Zahav sk 43 brings a discussion of whether testimony that a man was hanged by the government is accepted as final evidence that the man is now dead. The Turei Zahav discusses the habit of some governments to hang the man and to kill him while he is hanging by impaling him with spears or cutting him with swords; he also brings the Targum in Rus that seems to say that hanging is one of the four misos beis din, implying that the missa we call Chenek involved killing the prisoner by hanging. This is contrary to all of Shas Bavli and Yerushalmi. In back of of the Shulchan Aruch, there is a pirush called Lishkas Hasofrim, written by a talmid of the Chasam Sofer. He quotes the Chasam Sofer as saying that for all we know, the Targum on Rus may have been written by a Tzeduki, so forget about bringing proofs from such Targumim. The really funny thing is that Rabbi Krasner says that it's not just the Targum Rus; there's also a Zohar that says the same thing.
Reb Chaim Stein Shlitah once told my father Zatzal that he thinks the reason there is no such thing as Bas Soreres Umorah is because Nashim Daatan Kalos has a positive aspect. While a older boy who has demonstrated such rotten middos is on a clear trajectory to terrible aveiros, this is not true in the case of a girl. No matter how bad she might be now, a girl has the ability to completely turn her life around, to change her mind letov.
Encouraged (badgered? harassed?) by Chaim B and various anonymi, let me clarify the last paragraph.
The Gemara in Sanhedrin 69b ends by quoting Reb Shimon as saying that logically, girls should be included in the law of Ben Soreir Umoreh, because they can more easily become public nuisances when they have lost their moral compass and are driven by improper compulsions and illicit desires. But the Torah clearly states the contrary-- ben, not bas. Additionally, the Yerushalmi, quoted by Kehati in his pirush to Sanhadrin 8:5 (and with some changes in the Meiri on the Mishnah on 68b,), says that the whole parsha of Ben Sorer UMoreh is counterintuitive and obscure, and one of the examples given is the limitation to boys and the exclusion of girls. However, the Meiri does offer a reason for excluding girls-- the Torah is more concerned with a person who by nature will be drawn after his desires and to sink into them, and this is not true by girls, but only by boys. So: if you're happy with the Meiri's contention that boys are more prone to going bad than girls are, and greater deterrents are necessary for more likely crimes, then you don't need Reb Chaim Stein's pshat. I, however, like Reb Chaim's pshat very much; that men tend to be less willing to change their minds than women; a man's trajectory can, at some point, be practically unchangeable. La Donna e mobile qual piuma al vento can be a good thing.