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July 19, 2013

Belly Buttons, Amnesia & Mobbing

Harry M. Covert

Sometimes discretion is the greater part of valor. There is no dearth of opinionators, though, about how the legal system just failed everybody in the "land of sun and fun."


Just like belly buttons, everybody has one and an opinion concerning the "murder case of the month." What concerns me and, at the same time, galls me, is how our brothers and sisters in the journalism business are struck with a form of amnesia.


For example, the shootings and killings in Baltimore continue at epidemic proportions. Still no editorial comments from the "smart people" in the news rooms.


Ditto for the shootings and killings still going on in the streets of Washington, that's the District of Columbia.


Oh, another ditto for the continued shootings and killings in Second City, you know, Chicago, in the Land of Lincoln.


The shootings of the above mentioned are racial. This is not intended to be a smug comment. But, quite seriously, they are black-on-black, not Caucasian, Hispanic, eastern European or Waspish (white-Anglo-Saxon-protestant) on the same.


Society in general is under attack these days. Is there no doubt that crime is rampant throughout our cities and towns? Is there no wonder that people are afraid of walking down the streets? Not just in the southern states.


It's mighty convenient for the journalistic intelligentsia to zero in on a time long gone to consider such despicable events up to the War Between the States remains the order of the day. It's not funny.


There's no honor and glory in murder.


Many trials are held every day in the courts of Frederick and other jurisdictions in Maryland. The same holds true in West Virginia, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. And lots of these events involve all kinds of felonies – murders, rapes, robberies, assaults against children. This list goes on.


The vast majority of the court proceedings always find citizens who disagree with the results. Yet, there are no protest marches or invasions by the professional agitators and other flaks.


I have grieved over lots of cases, ones that don't receive widespread exposure where either the defendant or victim lost their freedoms.


A diminutive contract cable installer was constantly bullied by a colleague. After daily confrontations the smaller begged his tormentor to stop. At the boarding house Sunday dinner it continued. A further warning offered no peace. Quietly the smaller picked up his handgun and proceeded to shoot six-times. The bullying stopped – West Virginia white-on-West Virginia white and a 23-year prison sentence. Too bad he wasn't found not guilty. No protests.


There's the case where the Pakistani taxi driver shot a policeman in the head. The shooter has been sent for mental evaluation, possibly never to stand trial. Fortunately the police officer has a long recovery in store, likely never back on duty. No protests but community outpouring to help the officer.


A white grandmother makes an incorrect turn and runs smack into an Asian motorcycle policeman, who dies at the scene. Sad story, no jail sentence but community help for the policeman's family.


The point to all this? Protests are part of the vital freedoms available to all – even those on Indian reservations. But those protestors who like to smash windows, overturn cars and generally run amok are criminals. Doesn't sound nice but it’s true – law breakers.


There is justice in the legal systems of all 50 states, District, territories and possessions.


When state courts do things we don't like, there's no right for citizens to go berserk.


The feds' often jump in on controversial cases, but this should be done carefully and not as a reaction to mob threats and violence. Burning down the "house" doesn't solve anything. There is also a question of "double jeopardy."


Maybe, just maybe, the do-nothing Congress should rescind the "posse comitatus act." No more private law enforcers anywhere, even those who've replaced military police, air police, and shore patrol at military installations.


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