Friday, December 9, 2016

Talk about opening a can of worms!


I note that a black lawyer has made a startling suggestion.

African-Americans live in a world where the police can murder us and get away with it. Walter Scott proved that, for anybody who still had a lingering doubt. There is no justice for black people. And yet violently revolting against the system will get us nowhere.

Maybe it’s time for black people to use the same tool white people have been using to defy a system they do not consent to: jury nullification. White juries regularly refuse to convict or indict cops for murder. White juries refuse to convict vigilantes who murder black children. White juries refuse to convict other white people for property crimes. White juries act like the law is just a guideline and their personal morality (or lack thereof) should be controlling.

Maybe it’s time minorities got in the game?

Black people lucky enough to get on a jury could use that power to acquit any person charged with a crime against white men and white male institutions. It’s not about the race of the defendant, but if the alleged victim is a white guy, or his bank, or his position, or his authority: we could acquit. Assault? Acquit. Burglary? Acquit. Insider trading? Acquit.

. . .

This is something that intellectual black people with legal training talk about. Honestly, what the hell do you expect us to do? How do white people think we’re supposed to react when we watch cops murder us and get away with it, over and over and over again? We’re just supposed to take it? Wait for America to produce nicer white people? The options for black America in the face of this state-sponsored injustice seem pretty limited.

Jury nullification at least has the benefit of being non-violent. Understand, when cops — when the armed forces of the state — can shoot me for no reason and get away with it, I am no longer living in a civil society. I’m living in the state of nature, and I have a natural right to defend myself by any means necessary. But I’m not here advocating a violent response to systematic injustice (because we’d lose). Violence has a tendency to be indiscriminate, anyway. Instead, jury nullification is more of a surgical strike on an illegitimate justice system that has failed us. And it can be accomplished without the protection of the Second Amendment (which is denied to black people anyway).

. . .

We can bitch and we can march and we can refuse to stay in Trump hotels. But until the system stops giving white people something they want — the orderly procession of justice — then they will not be motivated to change the system. I WANT CHAOS IN THE PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE. And you can’t accomplish that with a bomb or a gun.

But you can with an acquittal. Lots of acquittals. All the acquittals. There are counties in this country where the justice system would grind to a halt if prosecutors couldn’t find black and brown people willing to convict or indict. NOBODY CARES if they can’t get an indictment against a police officer whose only crime was the murder of an African-American. But let’s see how Preet Bharara likes it when he can’t get an indictment for political corruption (defendant accused of taking advantage of the system? Acquit.). Let’s see what happens in Brooklyn when they can’t evict anybody ever again (refusing to pay rent to a white man? Acquit.). Let’s see what happens in Hollywood when you can’t bring a case against pirates (stealing the white man’s movies? Acquit.).

. . .

White juries are using jury nullification to protect cops. But the door swings both ways. It’s time for us to push back. Civil disobedience, when used in a targeted fashion, is a powerful force.

There's more at the link.

Irrespective of the merits (or otherwise) of his views on the criminal justice system (and his completely erroneous claim about Second Amendment protections being unavailable to blacks), I fear the author ignores two stark realities.

  1. He's advocating the deliberate acceptance of crime, in order to accomplish a political purpose.  If crime is never to be punished, for reasons having nothing to do with the crime itself, how can law and order survive in any form at all?  The breakdown will almost certainly be irretrievable.
  2. If non-black Americans become convinced that the criminal justice system will not, in fact, deliver justice to black criminals, then they will take the law into their own hands.  You'll find that more and more black criminals are found dead at the scene of their crimes.  "Honest, officer, he tried to grab my gun!" or "He tried to escape, and put my wife at risk as she stood at the corner of the house!" or "He was shouting to his friend to get the gun from the car, so I had to shoot both of them!"  Think that won't happen?  You're living in cloud cuckoo land.  It will.  I've seen it happen in South Africa, when racial considerations colored (you should pardon the expression) the enforcement and administration of law and order - first on the white side under apartheid, then on the black side post-apartheid.  The consequences were disastrous, and they plague the people of that benighted land to this day.

I think this is a dangerously naive, short-sighted and ideologically unbalanced suggestion.  If it's adopted, expect chaos to follow.

Peter

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's funny how people with this perspective never advocate for solutions that would actually fix the problem. Starting with dismantling a culture that glorifies thug life, personal accountability, and putting fathers back into the home.

All these cries for My Rights, but no corresponding cries for My Responsibilities.

lpdbw said...

Your first point, about the acceptance of crime, is covered by his (inaccurate) view in his screed that he is "living in the state of nature".

Your second point is the logical conclusion that will arrive when he achieves his goal of nullifying justice. He will then realize that the justice system exists to protect the criminals (and the innocent) from mob justice.

I'm a fan of jury nullification, when applied to specific cases or specific bad laws, not as a purely partisan tool. And a racist tool, in this instance.

A Visitor said...

The opened can had a name for the past two decades: Baltimore City.

Your second point hasn't really been acted on publicly because:

a. The police heavily (but not perfectly) protect the remaining upscale white neighborhoods that provide property tax base, and the Inner Harbor/ stadium/ business district (at least in daylight.mostly)

b. No one wants to bring external trouble to Little Italy.

Anonymous said...

It's already happened; an OJ juror 'fessed up last spring.

Al_in_Ottawa

Anonymous said...

Maybe Trump should round up cruise liners and allow disgruntled blacks to return back home to the motherland. I'm sure Liberia, and africa in general, is in need of black lawyers, beurocrats, professionals and community organizers. Give them some cash, revoke their citizenship, apoligize for the turbul ebils of da slabury and order the ships to set sail for the motherland. No whites there to opress them or white cops to shoot them.

Bart Noir said...

People can only use jury nullification if they are actually on a jury. If the race of a potential juror is linked to an expectation of bias and refusal to be the unbiased juror which the court requires, there is little chance of that person being seated on the jury.

Bob said...

I honestly don't see how blacks and whites are going continue living in the same space. Blacks are so thoroughly brainwashed about the total evil of all white males that they will never be satisfied until we are all dead and buried. And to be truthful, most whites don't give a damn about what happens to blacks anyway, just let them go their own way, do their own thing.

But they won't leave us alone.

They demand everything for free. They riot and loot at will. They want to impose themselves into every aspect of our lives. They want our neighborhoods. They want our women. They want what we worked for, all of it.

And they think they have some sort of right to just take it all because slavery. Or whatever.

So what's about to happen will be talked about (like the general said) for the next ten thousand years.

A bit of friendly advice to the Jews: Get away while you still can. When the gloves come off and a totally aroused America decides it's payback time for what you have done to this nation, in the media, in Hollywood, in our schools and universities, you'd best be somewhere else.

I'm 77 years old and have no intentions of joining up with - or promoting - any causes on any side. But I've been watching and listening, and what's about to come down is totally unavoidable. It's way too late to put the fires out. Only a rainbow chasing fool thinks rushing in with his bucket of water will help.

But I do intend to continue to watch(From a distance) as Hell comes to breakfast.

I don't have any other choices.

Fred said...

"White juries are using jury nullification to protect cops." He's wrong here. What he is upset over is not getting convictions in high profile cases that should not have been brought to begin with. As to blacks on juries not voting to convict I sat on one such 2 decades ago. It resulted in a hung jury not an acquittal. Needless to say juror number 8 said something different to the judge than he did to his fellow jurors.

DaddyBear said...

The times I've sat on a jury with black defendants and black jurors, it's been the black jurors that are most vehement about guilt and the need to severely punish.

Not sure he'll get the support he's looking for. A lot of black people seem to be as fed up as the rest of us.

Anonymous said...

I think, and the commenters above seem to support my belief, that both the author has an unrealistic and quite distorted view of How Things Actually Work.

As to How Things Actually Work, the author appears to not comprehend the concept of Unintended Consequences; if one has food which is being eaten by a rat, one does not seek to identify and locate the particular rat which is consuming the food, one seeks to eliminate all rats because it is not possible to determine which rat is guilty and it is assumed all rats possess an equal propensity to consume one's stored food.

Given that statistics have for some time quite accurately established that violent crime is concentrated in young black urban males and despite the absolute ban on any discussion of this concentration, much less the discussion and introduction of any corrective measures, the general population is very well aware of such concentration.

I would suggest the author perform some research on the topic of pogroms and consider that prophylactic eradication of potential threats could quite easily become the result of widespread acknowledgment of substantial deliberate corruption to orderly application of the Rule of Law. Despite being subject to human frailties and vagaries, judges, lawyers and juries operating under Constitutional and statutory imperatives are a considerably more desirable choice than Mad Max.

Effort would be better spent on first, reduction of the need for such court proceedings and, second, careful and learned improvements to the proceedings themselves.

Brigid said...

How does he explain the whole OJ Simpson trial?

BigFire said...

Because as a black person, he's far more likely to be a victim committed by black. Watch Chris Rock's but about Black People vs Niggas for that mindset.

Dan said...

The lawyer making this statement is basing it on the idea that cops murder blacks with impunity and lists the Scott case as evidence. To him it is a matter of racism.
He is wrong. Race has nothing to do with it. Officer Slager did not shoot Mr. Scott
because he was black. He shot him because he WAS NOT A COP. To the vast majority of
cops race is irrelevant. Black, white, red, brown, yellow...green....color doesn't matter. All that matters is 'You ain't blue'. Therefore you have no rights. And THAT is the real problem. The video of Mr. Scotts EXECUTION is crystal clear. There was and can not ever be any legal basis justifying the officers action...yet
he was not convicted at trial and almost certainly will be acquitted at subsequent
trials....because the defense and the police union will manage to somehow plant someone on the jury who they know will refuse to convict. They may have to bribe, coerce, threaten, frame a relative etc. to accomplish this but they will do what ever is required to keep Slager free. And unless we as a society recognize this
problem, admit it is real and most importantly DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT justice in America is NONEXISTENT. The ONLY issue at that point becomes not one of is it
legal...because legality is IRRELEVANT. The issue becomes a matter of revenge....
will it be possible for a victim of the states hired thugs to exact a toll on the
oppressors without getting caught. Many people who murder cops do so on the spur of the moment.....or with faulty planning. But lately more and more cops are being
ambushed and killed...and their killers are not being caught so readily. As more and more smart, high functioning citizens become victims of the cabal of "law enforcement" more of them will decide that a little payback is in order...and it's a lot harder to catch a smart person who plans properly than a rash one who acts impulsively. Expect the war on cops ( which is a logical response to the war on freedom that is being waged with cops as the tip of the spear) to expand and become bloodier. The Slager/Scott incident is a crime...but it is more importantly a symptom of a terrible disease that is afflicting America.