Tag Archives: justice

No one is above the law? We’ll see

It has become cliche to declare that “no one is above the law,” that every American citizen must face the same potential punishment for crimes committed, no matter their standing as public officials or as former public officials.

Well, I think we’ll have to see how that plays out as it involves Donald John Trump.

The ex-president of the United States is facing a boatload of allegations that could be proven true. To be fair, those allegations also could wither and die.

Trump occupies a unique place in our nation’s roster of former elected officials. He’s either revered or reviled. Count me among the latter group of Americans. That is my way of suggesting that I hope the “no one is above the law” cliche plays out properly, that not even Donald Trump could avoid time behind bars if the allegations against prove true.

He faces possible indictment in Georgia for trying to coerce a statewide elections official to “find” enough votes to allow him to win that state’s electoral votes in 2020; he lost the state to Joe Biden. A congressional select committee has summoned dozens of Trump aides to testify before the panel about what Trump did on 1/6 when he incited the traitorous mob to storm Capitol Hill. A New York City district attorney has indicted Trump’s company on allegations of fraud; we will get to see whether the Boss — Trump himself — was a party to allegations of inflating his wealth to obtain loans.

I hasten to add that if your run-of-the-mill rich guy is convicted of any combination of these crimes, he would be fitted with a prison jump suit and sent to the slammer. If Donald Trump gets convicted of any of these allegations, do you believe he will go to jail, or to prison? My heart tells me Trump should be sent to the lockup. My head suggests that Trump — if a jury declares him guilty of any of the crimes for which he could be charged — is going to skate free of any time behind bars.

No one is above the law? We might get to see whether that’s true … or just a tired cliche.


Yes, try the kid as an adult

It boggles my mind at times why officials have to haggle for a long time about whether to try a juvenile as an adult when he allegedly commits the kind of crime that occurred the other day in Oxford, Mich.

Four people are dead after a high school student opened fire. The student is in custody. Three of the fatal victims dies on the day of the shooting; the fourth one died just today. Many more victims were injured.

I get that the suspect is a juvenile, but damn, the boy is charged with committing a grievous act of violence on other students.

Authorities are keeping him segregated from the adults in jail. I am OK with that. I also am OK with keeping underage convicts who are tried as adults away from the grownups in the slammer.

However, the penalty for a conviction on the crime that this individual is alleged to have committed should be the maximum provided to adults, not to minors. He is accused of committing a heinous act and if he is convicted, he needs to do the time required under the law … as an adult.


Racial justice: Has it arrived?

One jury verdict does not necessarily signal a trend, although some thinkers and analysts are trying to ascribe a trend to the Georgia jury that convicted three white men of murdering a black man.

The trend that some are asking: Does this verdict signal the arrival of racial justice in America?

Let’s hold on here. Ahmad Arbery was jogging through a white neighborhood when he was accosted by three men who seemingly though that Arbery, who was black, didn’t belong there. One of the men shot Arbery to death and that individual, Travis McMichael, was convicted of all the charges associated with the killing.

The jury, comprising 11 white people and one black individual, delivered a stern warning to anyone thinking they can hide behind a “self-defense law.”

What about the racial justice question? If it spells the end of verdicts that acquit white people of killing a black person on flimsy evidence, the answer is “no,” we don’t have racial justice. Nor do we have it if a jury acquits a black individual if he kills white victims, such as what occurred in 1995 when a mostly black jury acquitted O.J. Simpson of murdering his former wife and her friend.

I am not going to ascribe an abundance of significance to the Georgia jury’s verdict. I welcome it, but let’s wait a long while before we attach any historical significance to what the jury has ruled.


Mob mentality exhibiting its ugliness

George Floyd is the latest in a long and distressing line of African-Americans who have fallen victim to police cruelty. I’ve seen the video of the Minneapolis cop pressing his knee on the back of Floyd’s neck, watching him pass out after pleading with the officer to release him because he couldn’t breathe.

Floyd’s death has sparked justifiable outrage and anger among many Americans, black and white.

However … I want to speak about the mob mentality that has overwhelmed Minneapolis. We are witnessing the worst possible way to call for “justice” for George Floyd, who died day after being manhandled by the cops.

The Minneapolis Police Department fired the four officers immediately after the incident. That isn’t enough. There needs to be a thorough investigation into whether they committed a prosecutable crime. I am inclined to believe they did.

The rioting, looting and, yes, the reported death of a resident in all the mayhem is what I want to address here.

Civilized human beings never should destroy property to supposedly protest an injustice that has been done. The scenes of the fires, the smashing of motor vehicle windows, the theft of items by looters does not advance a single noble notion if society is going to put an end to the type of conduct we have witnessed — yet again — by law enforcement officers against an American citizen.

I am sickened by what we have all seen prior to George Floyd’s death. He wasn’t resisting arrest for a non-violent crime. He was, as I saw it, killed by an officer who went far beyond what is normal and humane.

I also am sickened by the sight of the looting, vandalism, mayhem and outrageous behavior of citizens who are doing far more harm than good in their quest for justice.

I fear they might have dishonored the memory of George Floyd.

Justice can be found, but not this way.