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Friday, November 28, 2014

Roasted.

Mother of pearl. Is that the time? I thought the sun was getting kind of bright in here. Pull the blinds. No blinds? Arrgh. Hang another sheet over the window.

Noodles?Rolled out of bed a little tardy today. Who can blame me? After a gut-full of grub, a man's thoughts turn to hibernation. Big Green doesn't ordinarily celebrate major holidays, but we did relent this year and enjoy a modest Thanksgiving feast, prepared by the steady hand of our confidant Anti-Lincoln, who has elected to stay at the abandoned Cheney Hammer Mill while he considers his next steps. (I think he's contemplating some brand of global domination, but no details yet. Can't rush a genius!)

Some of you may recall that Lincoln's favorite dish was Chicken Fricasee. Well, that obviously meant something to Anti-matter Lincoln, if only in the sense that he wanted to run in the exact opposite direction with his holiday meal plan. What's the opposite of Chicken Fricasee, you may ask? In anti-Lincoln's twisted mind, it's dry noodles with tamari sauce sprinkled lightly over them. I think he dropped a couple of mint leaves in there, but that may have been an accident - we keep the tamari right behind the mint leaves. Coincidence? I don't think so!

So bloody hell, you never saw a band tear into a plate of noodles like we did last night. And when I say "plate", I mean one modest plate. Two forks on every noodle. Pretty feisty little dinner, but at least we were together. Stupid togetherness! I think only Marvin (my personal robot assistant) got his fill at our holiday table. And that's only because he takes his nourishment via two leads from a dry cell under his chair. Note to self: I've got to get him another cell for Christmas this year.

No "Black Friday" shopping for us, friends. After that singular repast, we will just stick close to the mill for a couple of days and do a little work on our annual Christmas podcast. I'd tell you what we're planning, but that would be telling. (It would also require us having planned something, which we most certainly have not.)

Justice be not swift.

Well, the verdict is in. I say "verdict" only because the prosecutor in the Michael Brown shooting investigation presented a trial-like case to the grand jury that included extensive exculpatory evidence, such as hours of testimony from the suspect himself - an approach that even Justice Scalia has considered irregular (though he has not, to my knowledge, commented on this specific case). I say "verdict" because Michael Brown himself was on trial in these grand jury proceedings, much as Trayvon Martin was while his killer, wannabe-cop George Zimmerman, was sitting in the dock without a care in the world.

Mr. Myth Maker.St. Louis County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch ultimately provided the grand jury with a distorted picture of Michael Brown that made him out to be a superhuman, hyper aggressive, predatory cop-hater. Darren Wilson's description of Brown was surreal and, in my opinion, carefully concocted to create the impression that there was no other way to deal with this young man than with a hail of bullets. Brown's face was like that of a "demon"; he had the strength of "Hulk Hogan"; while being shot, Brown was "bulking up" so he could somehow charge through the officer's hysterical gunfire. This is myth making, pure and simple.

But the prosecutor's office didn't rely only on distorted racial myths in its quest to avoid an indictment. They also relied on distortions of the law, such as this item (as reported by Bill Moyers):

"[MSNBC host] Lawrence O’Donnell found that just before Darren Wilson testified, “prosecutors gave grand jurors an outdated statute that said police officers can shoot a suspect that’s simply fleeing.” SCOTUS ruled the statute unconstitutional in 1985.


To my mind, the issue that never truly gets examined is the question of whether a police officer is justified in firing that 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th shot, as opposed to shots 1 and 2. What kind of training did Darren Wilson have, that he would feel like a "5 year old" in a tussle with a young man like Brown? What prompted him to unload his handgun into someone who may not have been complying with orders, but who had evidently done nothing to warrant a summary death penalty? One could ask the same question of many other police shooters of young black men over the past ... I don't know ... century.

There does appear to be a serious "I am Darren Wilson" movement out there amongst law enforcement. We heard this recently from Utica's police chief:

“Our justice system is not perfect, but it’s one of the best in the world,” Utica police Chief Mark Williams said. “Whether it’s a police officer or civilian, everybody should be given their due process and justice isn’t always swift. There has to be an investigation, and you just can’t indict somebody just to appease people who have a dislike for police.”


So ... are Brown's mother and father just a couple of people "who have a dislike for police"? True, justice isn't always swift, but with attitudes like this prevalent in the management of our police departments, it is at a positive standstill.

luv u,

jp