Leading Candidate For Most Unethical Opinion Column Of 2016: Daily Beast Editor Goldie Taylor

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How a major U.S. news and public affairs website can produce an article like Daily Beast Editor-At-Large Goldie Taylor’s is a fertile subject for inquiry, as is the question of how much the ignorant, un-American, values-warping assertions it contains are reinforced throughout our rising generations’ education and socialization. Those investigations must wait for another day, when I have the stomach for it.

For now, let’s just consider what Taylor wrote. It is titled “Six Baltimore Cops Killed Freddie Gray. The System Set Them Free,” an unethical headline that kindly warns us regarding the awfulness to come. No, six Baltimore cops did not kill Freddie Gray, as far as we, or the system, knows based on the evidence. That Taylor would state such an unproven and unprovable statement as fact immediately makes her guilty of disinformation, and shows that she is willfully ignorant of the principles of American justice, as well as too hateful and biased to comprehend them. Damn right the system set them free. That’s because in the Freddie Gray cases the system worked spectacularly well, despite the best efforts of an incompetent and biased prosecutor to make it do otherwise.

And that was just the title. The rest is infinitely worse: if you are feeling sturdy, read it all here. If not, the selected highlights (lowlights?) to follow will suffice.

Taylor wrote early on,

“There is little question about what happened to the 25-year-old. We know where he was injured and how. We know that he was in police custody. And we know that the officers responsible for his well-being took actions they knew would result in bodily harm and then ignored injuries and his pleas for help.

In fact, we don’t know this. The trials did not prove it, and what we do know doesn’t make certitude possible.  We know that Gray was injured at some point during the trip in the police van, but we do not know how, and there was not conclusive evidence that the officers were trying to harm him. Gray had a history of faking injury during his arrests, and may have cried wolf once too often. The judge in the case found that the explanation for why Gray wasn’t seatbelted into the police van—a mob of onlookers was threatening the officers—to be supported by witness testimony and credible accounts by the officers.  Four of the officers charged weren’t in the van during the alleged “rough ride,” so how they could be found criminally culpable for Gray’s injuries during that ride is a mystery. Taylor accepts a false and absurd conclusion as the starting point for her essay, so it is not surprising that the rest leaves fact, fairness and law behind.

Taylor wrote,

“There would be a reckoning for what happened to a young black man who had been suspected of nothing more than averting his eyes and jogging away when police officers looked his way.”

This is an intentionally misleading statement. When a known criminal with a record, like Gray, starts running as soon as he sees the police, that is probable cause for a police stop. Gray, who was just 24, had been involved in 20 criminal court cases, with five still active at the time of his arrest. He was due in court on a drug possession charge just two weeks from his arrest. In February of 2009, Gray had been sentenced to four years in prison for two counts of drug possession with intent to deliver, but was paroled in 2011. He was arrested once again for violating parole in 2012, but  not sent back to prison.

The police knew him as habitually engaging in illegal activity, usually drug possession, and when he started sprinting away upon seeing them. They had reasonable suspicion to apprehend him under a long string of Supreme Court cases. He was not suspected of “averting his eyes and jogging away”; he was suspected of illegal acts because he averted his eyes and ran away, as in “fleeing.” The officers found an illegal switch-blade on Freddie Gray, which they would not have done if he hadn’t run. No, Freddie was not very bright. In fact, he was brain-damaged due to lead-paint poisoning. In her essay, Taylor calls him, deceitfully, “able-bodied.” Not exactly.

Taylor wrote,

“While some criticized Mosby’s move to secure indictments against the law enforcement officers at all or warned that she had leveled top charges that would be difficult to convict on, many people believed her when she said she would be their voice. For them, the math was simple: Gray was an able-bodied man before his encounter with police that day in April 2015. Days later, he died from injuries sustained while in custody.”

“Many people” believed Mosby because she told the rioters that she was their voice, and this was, as I and many others have written, an unethical, false, and irresponsible thing to say. She’s not the voice of the mob, she’s the voice of the state, as well as a representative of law enforcement, just like the police. The “some” who criticized Mosby’s indictments were essentially everyone who understood prosecutor ethics and the requirement for there to be sufficient evidence before anyone, police or civilian, can be charged with a crime. Those for whom “the math was simple”are known as ignorant citizens, or perhaps Black Lives Matters followers. That “math” does not equal “crime,” and never has.

Other “math” from vengeful and legal rights-ignorant activists is the theory that if a police officer kills an unarmed black individual, it is presumptively murder regardless of the circumstances, and if the cop is white, racism must have been involved. This “math” is the reason police are being assassinated and abused, as in the recent incidents of officers being refused service in restaurants, and in one case, served food laced with glass. It is the duty of journalists, opinion writers and editors to explain why this incompetent, deadly “math” is misguided, not to encourage and validate it, which is what Taylor did.

Taylor wrote,

“Many people needed to believe that for once the system could work, that it could finally do the job of meting out justice when officers were the ones committing the crimes. They needed to believe that the rule of law and equal protection applied to Gray—and to them too.  His death, the blunted end of a black life, they asserted, was worthy of inspection.”

I have noted more than once of late that the African-American community has seemingly adopted a tribal, eye-for-an-eye version of “justice” which is alien not only to American principles but civilized society. Included in this dangerous vision is the assumption that “crimes”are self-evident, which they are not. It cannot be stated that crimes were committed by the officers until the commissions of crimes are proven by the State, in court, beyond a reasonable doubt, with real evidence and just not wailing family members and angry mob protests.

If “many people” believe that for the rule of law and equal protection to apply, police officers must be convicted without adequate proof, then many people never bothered to educate themselves on basic civics. Again, Taylor could correct that problem. Instead, she exacerbated it.

Taylor wrote,

“…Prosecutors know that getting a judge or jury to convict a police officer who was acting in the line of duty is all but impossible—no matter the race of the victim. Mosby had to know that. As she measured the charges, she had to know that the deck was stacked against her. She had to know that by charging the officers with murder, she was asking a judge or jury to do her job and fill in the gaps in evidence.”

It is not “all but impossible” to convict a police officer, when there is sufficient evidence. Police officers who are proven to have deliberately and unnecessarily harmed a citizen with malice aforethought will be convicted. It is likely that Michael Slager, the South Carolina police officer caught on video shooting Walter Scott in the back while he was running away from him, will be convicted, for example. The “deck was stacked” against Mosby because the system does not operate on the uncivilized, visceral assumptions that Mosby, Taylor and Black Lives Matter endorse.  The violent death of a black man isn’t enough to prove a crime. The deck was stacked because Mosby had insufficient evidence to get guilty verdicts, and the ethical remedy was not to bring charges unless and until she had more evidence.

That is the system, and that aspect of it protects all of us. Instead, the prosecutor tried to pervert the system to force the officers to face trials anyway.

Judges and juries cannot “fill in gaps.” If they do, they are violating the rule of law, and the requirement of proof beyond a reasonable doubt.

“…the burden of proof is extraordinary when a member of law enforcement is involved. That is not codified into law, but it is baked into our social consciousness. The bar for holding officers to account is higher, because—for better or worse-—we raised it. Those six officers will walk away scot free because Mosby did not do her job. Despite knowing the hurdles, she pressed ahead with an aggressive prosecution knowing her office could not meet the socially-imposed standard….”

Baloney. The burden of proof was exactly the same for the officers as it was when Freddie Gray was tried: Proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The fact that a police officer is duty bound to face peril every day, must risk conflict rather than avoid it, and must view daily  stressful situations within the context of his or her  experience is part of the evidence that juries and judges must consider in determining their state of mind and motive. It isn’t an extraordinary standard at all. The police defendants are different. A pattern of criminal activity can be relevant evidence to convict a defendant, and a pattern of risking life and limb to protect the public and enforce its laws is also relevant. So is a pattern of excessive force, bias and racism. There is no socially imposed standard. There is a necessary assumption that police officers are trustworthy, just as there is necessary assumption that elected officials are trustworthy, and that journalists at least try to tell the truth. Lacking those assumptions, the system does not and cannot work.

Sure, this allows a few to take advantage of the system, and makes it especially difficult to punish them. For trusted professionals, the presumption of innocence has special power. The alternative that this subversive essay is calling for is a presumption of guilt.

She wrote:

“…Maybe they did not intend to kill Gray, but make no mistake. They meant to do him harm.”

No. She cannot say that. She does not “know” they meant Gray harm, any more than we “know” that he tried to hurt himself, as a witness initially claimed. Although Taylor eventually condemns Marilyn Mosby for bringing charges that she couldn’t prevail on because of what Taylor calls a flawed system, what she is calling for is a system that will punish not merely cops but all defendants when we “know,” or think we “know,” they are guilty. That is the system the United States has explicitly and intentionally rejected for one that holds that it is better that many guilty men go free than to convict the innocent. Her system, which would punish presumed guilt, is the “justice” of totalitarians, the “justice” of the mob, and the “justice” of “The Ox-Bow Incident,” (photo above) the famous dark 1943 Western about a lynch mob.

It is also the system of justice advocated by Black Lives Matter, at least when white police officers are involved, and thus the system of justice endorsed this week by the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton. Make no mistake about that.

After I read the article, I looked up the biography of Goldie Taylor to see what kind of individual  actively participates in convincing young Americans and blacks that what is wrong with the “system” is its insistence on certainty of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. She’s an African American who has become more radical as she has proceeded through her writing, political and journalism careers. Her world view seems to have been molded by her experience as a victim of sexual abuse. She declared George Zimmerman guilty of profiling, murder and racism on national television, appearing in a hoodie, because she “knew” Zimmerman was guilty. Naturally, she has been a regular contributor to MSNBC, but has far more influence than that.

Taylor has served as executive consultant to NBC News and CNN Worldwide. In 2009, while serving as a consulting producer to CNN, almost entirely on race issues, and was  previously  an external affairs executive for several Fortune 500 companies, as well as two large public relations agencies, the GCI Group San Francisco and Edelman Atlanta Public Relations. She heads her own company, Goldie Taylor Brand Communications, an Atlanta-based “multi-cultural advertising and public relations agency.”

All of this, despite having no understanding or respect for the criminal justice system, the burden of proof, or the rule of law.

It is profoundly frightening that an educated, wealthy, influential and presumably respected (though not by me) opinion journalist can think it is appropriate to state that she “knows” that the six officers charged by Marilyn Mosby were guilty, that their guilt is a fact, and thus condemn the justice system for freeing them. There are cases where it is reasonable for informed onlookers to say that they know an accused defendant is guilty—O.J. Simpson and Casey Anthony come to mind—though this isn’t one. But even in those cases, it is outrageous, ignorant, and irresponsible to maintain that because we just know a defendant is guilty, a properly functioning system should take away their liberty or even their life without sufficient evidence.

Opinion leaders like Goldie Taylor in academia, politics, and journalism are increasingly promoting this primitive, brutal, biased and undemocratic idea, and now, through Black Lives Matters, they have the symbolic support of a major political party, because it wants votes by any means necessary.

Taylor and the Daily Beast are just symptoms of a potentially disastrous crack in the ethical foundation of our justice system being widened for political gain.

23 thoughts on “Leading Candidate For Most Unethical Opinion Column Of 2016: Daily Beast Editor Goldie Taylor

  1. Jack said, “It is profoundly frightening that an educated, wealthy, influential and presumably respected (though not by me) opinion journalist can think it is appropriate to state that she “knows” that the six officers charged by Marilyn Mosby were guilty, that their guilt is a fact, and thus condemn the justice system for freeing them. …”,

    “Opinion leaders like Goldie Taylor in academia, politics, and journalism are increasingly promoting this primitive, brutal, biased and undemocratic idea, and now, through Black Lives Matters, they have the symbolic support of a major political party, because it wants votes by any means necessary.

    Taylor and the Daily Beast are just symptoms of a potentially disastrous crack in the ethical foundation of our justice system being widened for political gain. “

    Another “singular” piece of evidence to support the talk about the dumbing down of America and the direct and indirect affects it can have.

  2. One guess what color Ms. Taylor is. Black follows black, votes for black, advocates for black, comes out for black, looks out for black, sides with black, and supports black no matter what the evidence says. That’s why 95+% of the black community voted for Obama and Romney got not a single black vote in Philadelphia 4 years ago. This is also why no black can ever be fired for cause, no black can ever be turned down for not meeting a standard and whenever a black is the victim of a white act and criminal charges don’t stick, it’s because someone not-black rigged the system.

    This is the America Obama created and the one Hillary wants to keep on creating until we have a reverse apartheid, where the white man is the new disenfranchised class.

  3. I think Zoltar missed a major issue when he said “Another “singular” piece of evidence to support the talk about the dumbing down of America and the direct and indirect affects it can have”.

    Those that claim to “bring voice” to the oppressed are in many ways extortionists. As Jack noted, Taylor is/was being paid by major organizations for her “understanding” of cultural factors that speak to the minority communities for, I assume, positive brand association. The fact that these major organizations do not discontinue their association with Taylor because of such rhetoric suggests that they are fearful of the damage such pseudo-journalists can and are inclined to do; destroy any opposition by making false claims that appeal to the mob.

    Jack, you created a new category I believe was “things to help Trump get elected”. This, in my opinion, is one of them as well. This type of demagoguery is far more of a threat to the rule of law than anything I have heard coming from Trump. More importantly, the silence from the left against such rhetoric is deafening which suggests approval of the comments.

    • Chris Marschner said, “I think Zoltar missed a major issue…”

      I’m not following how your comment shows that I missed a major issue when in fact what you talked about is actually a direct symptom of the root cause of dumbing down; people simply wouldn’t believe the crap Marilyn Mosby spewed if dumbing down wasn’t taking place. 40 years ago, Marilyn Mosby would have been looked at like she’s an idiot for saying the things she said in that speech and the media would have ripped her to shreds; today she has a publicly approved politically correct soap box to spew her nonsense from and ignorant people, that don’t know their ignorant, eat it up as fact. As for being “fearful of the damage such pseudo-journalists can and are inclined to do; destroy any opposition by making false claims that appeal to the mob.”, that’s an indirect symptom of dumbing down; rational thinking non-idiots are justifiably fearful of idiots that have shown a tendency to resort to direct or indirect violence (like I quoted from your comment) to destroy their lives.

      • I see and can agree with all of your points. I focused on your basic sentence regarding a “singular piece of evidence supporting the dumbing down. . . ”
        I suppose it is much like the chicken and the egg – which came first?

        I believe that the dumbing down is a symptom of the insidious effects of political rhetoric when it meets rational self interest. People on both sides of issues only seem to see, listen, or embrace POV’s that support that which they want to believe.

        Ask a leftist if they can accept anything Trump or a conservative stands for. Ask a Trumpist or a conservative if they can agree with any position coming from the left. More often than not the conversation ends with a emphatic no! I believe that the reason for this is that neither side wants to concede anything because it might undermine their attempts to amass power and control or prevent the loss of it.

        As a result, marketers of candidates exploit this tendency of the populace to promote brand loyalty. This concept was borne out in one of the leaked DNC emails which discussed strong brand loyalty tendencies among Hispanics.

        You cannot dumb down an electorate that is willing to listen and learn unless you can control all the messages. The American people will get better results from government and better candidates when they begin evaluating issues from multiple angles.

        • Chris,
          Look up Charlotte Iserbyt. She talks extensively about the dumbing down of America and she wrote a book specifically about it. You might find some of it interesting, lots of boring stuff there too.

              • Chris made the point I was going to make: This woman is running a do-it-yourself, mini-shake-down operation on the Rev. Jesse Jackson/ Rev. Al Sharpton model. Go to corporations, tell the if they pay her a huge retainer or put her on their board and/or payroll she will adeptly guide them through the hazards of racial grievances. If you don’t… “you never know.”

  4. Jack,
    “When a known criminal with a record, like Gray, starts running as soon as he sees the police, that is probable cause for a police stop.”

    That may meet the Terry definition, but it doesn’t make it warranted. Especially when all it resulted in was the discovery of a knife which may or may not have been legal. And, given that nearly every American citizen is in violation of some local, state, or federal law at any given moment, I’m not sure it served the purpose of “protecting the peace.”

    As it were, I regularly run from the police (to waste their time) and regularly get stopped for doing so, despite having no record, and always being found devoid of contraband each time I’m searched. What’s more, I’ve been handcuffed, thrown in the back of police cars, threatened, and had a cop almost book me for carrying an old prescription bottle (which was filled with aspirin) in someone else’s name. Where’s the probable cause there? They saw me running away? This doesn’t work to serve or protect the public, it’s simply an abuse of power to inconvenience and intimidate people like me who thumb their noses (in small ways) at authority. One can only imagine what my record would look like if my skin were of a darker complexion.

    I’m not suggesting your interpretation of the Gray case is wrong overall, but police REGULARLY stop people without (much) probable cause other than “acting suspiciously.” I agree the case against the officers was a farce and likewise that Mosby acted incredibly unethically, but that doesn’t give the the cops or the police procedure used a pass, either. There has been a history of abuse in the department dating back years and, while this case isn’t the final “smoking gun” it nonetheless gives frightening insight into the way police departments in Baltimore (and elsewhere) operate.

    -Neil

    • WHAT???? It’s warranted because the vast,vast number of times someone flees the police, it’s because they are carrying contraband or are being sought. That’s reasonable suspicion for a stop.

      “especially when all it resulted in was the discovery of a knife which may or may not have been legal.” WHAT??? again. What is found after the chase has no legal effect on the validity of the chase.

      You are deeply confused. Your experience has nothing to do with Freddie Gray…and by the way, if police knew you as “the nut who likes to run away just to waste our time,” then I’d argue that in your case, fleeing is NOT cause for a stop.

    • Neil,
      I would consider myself a conservative Libertarian. What you described is absolutely idiotic. Furthermore, I would venture to say that you would be the loudest to complain if the police did not respond to calls for help.

      Why do you feel it necessary to provoke a police chase? For what purpose does wasting their time serve? What if you or the officer got hit by a car as a result of this stupid act. You would have never been chased were it not for you suggesting that you were doing something wrong by running. The police would have walked by you perhaps even saying good morning to you. However, if you display he same behaviors of people known to have committed or may be committing an offense you will be viewed as suspicious. One of the reasons tragic mistakes get made is because people resist the legal authority of the officer rather than complying and then challenging the appropriateness or legality of the stop in the proper forum.

      Your credibility becomes suspect when you purposely try to goad a police officer into having to stop you. I am sure you get a great sense of joy when you make the police look foolish when you have no contraband on you when you instigate a chase. So, when you make an unsubstantiated claim of a history of abuse in the Baltimore police department I simply don’t buy your assessment. I can say the United States has a history of slavery but that does not mean that it is an ongoing element of the American economy. Document your statements with empirical evidence or you are doing exactly what Jack was exposing this Daily Beast editor for.

      • Chris,
        I appreciate your thoughts. One quick thing:

        “Furthermore, I would venture to say that you would be the loudest to complain if the police did not respond to calls for help.”

        I was robbed once at gunpoint and, afterwards, immediately called the police to report the incident. I explained the incident, told them a rough description of the suspect (though, also mentioned it was dark and I didn’t get a solid look at his face), and told them what had been taken.

        After taking my report (which involved four police officers to take one statement), I was left alone on the same curb I’d just been robbed at. The cop who took the statement wouldn’t even give me a ride back to my apartment (which was only 4 blocks away), despite expressing that I was quite shaken up.

        About a 1/2 hour later the same cop arrived at my door (which was unlocked), and came in without knocking. He then informed me they had caught someone matching the description (which I didn’t understand, as I hadn’t given much of one) and was driven to another location where a young, black gentleman was being detained in the back of a police car. He wasn’t wearing clothing anything like the robber, didn’t have any of my belongings, and was picked up some two miles from where it had all occurred. Needless to say, it wasn’t the guy and he was let go.

        Now, I have no idea what that particular guy had done to warrant their suspicion or anything leading up to his being cuffed, but the fact that he was let free IMMEDIATELY after I cleared him, proves that whatever he was stopped for was completely unwarranted. He’d broken no law; he simply looked suspicious in an area where a crime had been committed.

        Since that day, I’ve been the victim of two more attempted armed robberies. I escape those, coincidentally enough, by running the moment I saw the gun. Never again have I called the police to report the incident or hunt down those involved. Despite, in one case, seeing a police car mere moments after I’d made my escape. So no, I wouldn’t cry loudly at all. In my experience (and ONLY my experience) cops do more harm than good after the fact.

        • Neil
          Your logic is at best confusing. You said, “Now, I have no idea what that particular guy had done to warrant their suspicion or anything leading up to his being cuffed, but the fact that he was let free IMMEDIATELY after I cleared him, proves that whatever he was stopped for was completely unwarranted. He’d broken no law; he simply looked suspicious in an area where a crime had been committed. ”

          If we evaluate that statement you said you had no idea what that guy had done to warrant suspicion but the reason he was let free was because you said it was not him. Maybe he ran from the police when they simply approached him too ask if he had any information on the robbery. That might trigger suspicion. Ya think? Did the police tell you that they picked him up simply because he looked suspicious? It appears tome you are drawing conclusions based on your existing bias against the police.

          I am having a hard time believing that a police officer would walk into anyone’s home without knocking first. I won’t challenge your desire to run from muggers and not involve police; that is your choice. I just ask that you not play running man with the police. It is unfair to them and reinforces in others the behavior of running from police when one has no reason to which can result in devastating consequences.

    • “As it were, I regularly run from the police (to waste their time) and regularly get stopped for doing so, despite having no record, and always being found devoid of contraband each time I’m searched.”

      That’s a fucking ignorant thing to do, and I kinda hope you get hurt next time. Am I an ass for saying it? Fine.

      “What’s more, I’ve been handcuffed, thrown in the back of police cars, threatened, and had a cop almost book me for carrying an old prescription bottle (which was filled with aspirin) in someone else’s name. Where’s the probable cause there?”

      Cops can’t identify Aspirin, and contraband prescription drugs are a huge black market.

      “They saw me running away?”

      That’s actually enough, yes.

      “This doesn’t work to serve or protect the public, it’s simply an abuse of power to inconvenience and intimidate people like me who thumb their noses (in small ways) at authority.”

      I don’t think you get to “thumb your nose” at the system and then bitch when you get slapped by it. How about you fire some cap guns at them next time? I am trying not get personal with people, but this has to be one of the dumbest things I’ve read here in a long time. At a time when police brutality is on the rise and front and centre, you’re fucking with them? Jesus Christ.

      • I agree, There’s enough danger now to law enforcement without idiots deliberately looking for trouble. If you deliberately look for trouble again I hope you run into a latter-day Andy Sipowicz who beats you so badly you never walk straight again while never leaving a bruise on your body.

      • Humble,
        “That’s a fucking ignorant thing to do, and I kinda hope you get hurt next time. Am I an ass for saying it? Fine.”

        Yes, you are. But that’s okay. I was an ass for doing it.

        I should have used past-tense. That particular farce I haven’t pulled in some years. I was a kid once and, I will freely admit, I did revel in making them look “foolish” (though, as you point out, very little was gained. Most of the time it was simply a means of testing limits. In that, at least, I’ve been successful (always up to the line, never over).

        “Cops can’t identify Aspirin, and contraband prescription drugs are a huge black market.”

        Yes, they can. First of all, the pills have the name imprinted in them. Secondly, Aspirin coating has a distinct smell and taste. Third (and I checked on this at the time), there is (or wasn’t) a law prohibiting someone from carrying around prescription bottles.

        “I don’t think you get to ‘thumb your nose’ at the system and then bitch when you get slapped by it.”

        I’ve never been slapped, just inconvenienced. And I’m not bitching in my case, I got off freely and had my (juvenile) fun. I didn’t present my example as something laudatory that ought to be emulated, only an illustration of how innocent people can appear “guilty” if one’s only criteria is how the appear to react to a police presence. In certain times and places, there can be legitimate reasons to run from the police that have nothing to do with “hiding something.” Cops are normal people who have been granted special license by society, but that doesn’t make them any less prone to malice, discrimination, or bullying.

        Prior to the above-referenced indiscretions, I used to get routinely stopped and searched for other (equally bullshit) reasons. As I said, I’ve never NEVER committed a recorded felony and I’ve never been actively engaged in any sort of social unrest or criminal enterprise. Yet, owing to the shitty car I drove, my unkempt appearance in an otherwise wealthy neighborhood, and whatever other identifiers I displayed, I have often been looked at as an undesirable.

    • I don’t know, Neil. The other day I was having an unbelievably awful day. I came upon a fellow dressed in a police uniform and, after nodding at him, I said, “Hey, officer. Do me a favor. ‘Hands down. Please shoot'”. His response was spectacular. He said, “‘Fraid not, sir. Too much paperwork. Now, move along.”

      jvb

        • Not particularly. When citizens quit auditioning for the pigs-versus-paranoids scenario and have everyday interactions with police, they often find the lawmen to have a superior deadpan expression, a dry, rather cynical sense of humor, and some kind of standard line (their own or fed in training?) to discourage further conversation without prejudice. Johnburger’s account matches several I’ve had and witnessed. Of course, it helps if it’s a neighborhood beat cop who knows you by sight and you aren’t running away from him.

  5. The author states, “There is little question about what happened to the 25-year-old. We know where he was injured and how. We know that he was in police custody.” Wrong. There is no evidence when and where and how Gray was injured. Many suggest that he was injured at the time his was arrested, before he was placed in the van. The resulting ‘rough ride’ only exacerbated the injury. If Mosby couldn’t prove when and where and how Gray was injured, then the crimes involving that element could not be proved, and acquittal was required.

    Next, this is quite a statement:

    “Mosby had to know that. As she measured the charges, she had to know that the deck was stacked against her. She had to know that by charging the officers with murder, she was asking a judge or jury to do her job and fill in the gaps in evidence.”

    If the author really thinks that Mosby was asking the judge or jury to fill in the gaps in evidence, then the author must realize that reasonable doubt had to exist. Judges and juries are there to weigh the evidence and the credibility of the witnesses, not fill in blanks in order to reach a decision. If the judge or jury has to do that, then the only answer available is not guilty. If, according to the author, Mosby does know that, then Mosby has no business being the district attorney let alone a licensed attorney.

    And this: “Those six officers will walk away scot free because Mosby did not do her job. Despite knowing the hurdles, she pressed ahead with an aggressive prosecution knowing her office could not meet the socially-imposed standard. Whether done mindfully or naively, that is an overcharge.”

    Those officers were acquitted because Mosby did not have the evidence to establish the elements of the crimes with which they were charged; if Mosby pressed ahead under the facts as known at the time, then Mosby is incredibly incompetent and should not be allowed anywhere near a criminal proceeding. Accordingly, the acquittals demonstrated that the system actually worked. Otherwise, the author and those similarly disposed are advocating turning 250 years of US criminal and Constitutional jurisprudence on its head where the new standard will be guilty until proven innocent. What these advocates don’t seem to understand is that a whole lot more people are going to prison under that new standard.

    The author concludes, “The system did not work in this case, and some might argue—given all the we know about our criminal justice system—it never could not have.”

    Wrong. That is exactly how the system is supposed to work. To argue for a guilty verdict against any or all of the officers for their respective crimes, based solely on the evidence Mosby knew at the time of the indictments, is to abandon due process. According to this author, the only issue should have been when and where to execute the officers.

    jvb

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