|Aurora Shooter James Holmes|
The prosecution of James E. Holmes for the slaughter in a Colorado movie theater last month differs from most criminal proceedings because there is so little doubt that he is the perpetrator. But that will not make it easier. Participants in the case, likely to be a drawn-out one, will wrestle with some of the most contested concepts in American law — sanity, an impartial jury and the political pressures for punishment in a deeply wounded community.But why not forego the buttered popcorn and all that salivating over the legal intricacies of a case in which everyone knows the man is guilty, and focus instead on getting falsely-accused minorities out of jail. The very notion that legal experts could draw intellectual stimulation from the so-called complexities of the Aurora case makes me want to vomit. What if instead they turned their agile legal minds to equalizing the criminal justice system so that 90% of all prison inmates were not minorities or poor whites?
Or maybe I'm missing the point. What is the best way for American society to convince itself that it has a functioning criminal justice system, when the opposite is the case? It might be to intellectualize the most visible cases, while continuing to do what it does best -- incarcerate shamefully disproportionate numbers of blacks, Hispanics and poor whites.
- Is Evil Colorblind?
- District Attorneys Should Be Investigated in Repeat Cases of Falsely Accused Black Prisoners Exonerated by DNA Evidence
- DNA Evidence Shows Twice as Many African-Americans Falsely Incarcerated