The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

And One for the Unpopular Opinions Department

Whether I think she is guilty or not doesn't matter, because I was not on that jury, I didn't hear the full arguments, I didn't examine any evidence; I only heard the news reports, which, I am not alone in noticing, utterly failed to presume innocence until proven guilty. Based on what evidence has been wafted in front of me, I think she is certainly guilty of criminal child neglect -- I am not sure, legally, whether that justifies a child abuse conviction in her state -- but that's beside the point.

Right now I'm more bothered by how the jury is being raked over the coals than the question of whether justice can ever be served in regard to the victim.

It is the prosecution's obligation to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. This prosecution sought a murder conviction without being able to name, let alone prove, a cause of death. I thought the prosecutors in the O.J. case were arrogant, but these are far worse -- these prosecutors assumed the jurors could be told what to believe and they'd believe it, with or without evidence to back it up.

Mourn publicly for that little girl, but stop telling me what idiots those jurors are. I'd vote to acquit someone of murder even if I thought she was probably guilty if I didn't think the case had been proven. I'd do that every time before I'd cheer on a conviction based on the standards of proof of the media and the court of public opinion. If I ever needed a reminder of why, I'd look at a photo of Ethel Rosenberg.

People serving on a jury are not audiences watching sensationalist news infotainment. This jury apparently took seriously its charge not to convict unless the burden of proof had been met. I can applaud them for that at the same time I can say that I think a woman who murdered her child will never be punished by the legal system for it. That's a failing of the police and the attorneys, the professionals in this case -- not the jurors.

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