(I reposted this after editting some mistakes…thanks for your patience…. )
I have watched the Martin-Zimmerman issue for a long time now, and it is what it is.
There are as almost as many opinions about it out there as there are people. My opinion is just one of millions, carrying no more or no less weight than any other, so I needn’t offer it here. I have a different purpose to write about.
The whole case is being analyzed, prodded and probed from every angle possible. The media is burning every end of the candle to get at fresh new ways to say yes-no-maybe so in an effort to get the ratings. This organization says this, that one wants that.
Analyze, pick, poke, stare, glare, put a new light on, study, pore over…
The jury system is flawed, they say. The laws in place worked against Martin… no wait, they worked against Hernandez. Both points are valid, perhaps. The outcome is therefore unjust – and you know what? It probably is.
Yes, I know. It is tragic that a young man is dead at the hands of another citizen. The particular facts are bothersome. A gun was used. Physical violence was used. It’s all there. But yet, I have to ask, are we cutting off the whole leg because of a hangnail on a toe?
There are many juried trials in this country every day. Courts deal out justice as best they can, running along the parameters of the laws of the land. My ordinary word-a-day skills of digging into the internet tell me that there are over half a million court trials every year in our country.
Why should we be so dang focused on ONE of them like this?
Why didn’t that guy in Wisconsin (Mr.Shaffhausen) who killed his 3 daughters get the same national coverage? He went on trial; he suffered the slings and arrows of public scrutiny. Some good friends of mine went through the horrors of having a grandson involved in a cop murder (allegedly) to the point that the suspected grandson killed himself prior to an arrest of any kind. What similar situations have crossed your own bow? How many other cases out there could have or should have merited such national fervor? What about other nefarious cases?
Our jury system is what it is, folks. Being created by humans, it is not perfect, but it is the closest we have to a fair and just legal procedure. It has been around since the ancient Greeks. It has a storied and strong history.
I do not want to see us turning our system into such a vile pile of crap that we once used. Remember when a lady accused of witchcraft was thrown in a river, and if she floated she was a witch? Are we headed down that angle in some ways? In some ways, I fear we are.
I find it so interesting that we have a society that can so vilify the jury members in this case, but yet some of those same members of society will try their very best to get out of jury duty. I’m sure you can tell me how many times you’ve heard people at work piss and moan about how they got called to jury duty, and how they’re going to do anything to get out of it. I’ve heard it myself … and I’ve sat on a grand jury myself (TWO murder trials) and seen it at work. Yes, it is inconvenient… and YES it is also the duty of every citizen to put in their time as well.
To the media – please folks, practice a little self-control in what and who you put on the air. Report the facts above all – control your pontificating with professionalism and thoughtful discussion.
To the legislative people – I challenge you to find ways to adjust our courtroom trials. The phrase ‘speedy trial’ is almost a farce these days. Let’s get back to that.
To my fellow citizens – take time to take a breath. There’s a whole country out there that needs our concern. Share your thoughts and concerns, of course. If you get called to jury duty, GO DO YOUR JOB.
So, here’s my thought. We cannot sit around and let the fear that something went wrong with the Martin-Zimmerman case. We cannot afford to spend the time to analyze every little thing about it, or about the jury system. We’re so busy looking at it that way that we are spending virtually zero time on IMPROVING the system. Let’s learn from it, and let’s move the heck ON, striving to get it better.