"Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Paul to the persecuted at Philippi (2:5-11)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Why Casey Anthony Demonstrates That the System Works

Okay, I'm not one to often say that the system works. My stance on the death penalty is that the government has a right and responsibility to bear the sword, but I tend to be against the death penalty because I don't think our government bears it responsibly most of the time. I find putting someone's life in the hands of twelve unprepared strangers to be unsettling at best. Jurors aren't lawyers, yet they're called upon to judge the place of the person in respect to the law. This, I admit, unsettles me.

And every armchair juror in America thinks Casey Anthony is guilty. And we all know, without hearing the evidence, that OJ did it, too.

In America, the majority is supposed to govern. And the majority has judged, without hearing the evidence or being present in the court room or in any way giving the suspects a fair trial, that the defendent is guilty.

Other nations allow the tyrant (in this case the majority voter) to judge a person guilty until his trial proves him otherwise. This is why other countries have historically seen tortured confessions as valid (they were guilty anyway, since proof to the contrary was not satisfactory, right?) and trials by fire and drowning were par for the medieval course. Throw her in the pond and if the water rejects her, kill her for a witch. If she drowns, the water had accepted her and too bad an innocent woman died. Well, she'll go to heaven, right? Collateral damage.

Somehow, in that courtroom twelve jurors were not convinced. They understood that the burden of proof was on the prosecution, beyond any reasonable shadow of a doubt, and they held doubts. They understood that the American way is to risk letting a criminal walk free before risking the imprisonment of an innocent person. And they were honor bound to let her go.

I didn't hear the evidence. I don't know what gave them that seed of doubt. I wasn't there, and so, in this, I don't get a vote. I just know that the majority doesn't rule here; the tyrant-majority cannot execute the believed criminal in the court of public opinion.

I also know that Scripture tells us that we are not to assume the role of judge, and that even when an earthly court of law is mistaken, we can trust justice to be done. And so I don't really understand the fascination and outrage. I have my opinions, but I know they're not worth anything in either this world or the next. Now if only the media would leave it alone and let America get on with life.

1 comment:

  1. "Now if only the media would leave it alone and let America get on with life."

    But then "the media" would have to go out and get real jobs, maybe even produce something. Now that would be NEWS.

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