G.L.Piggy [at] gmail.com
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Writing at the Daily Beast, a Cleveland-area writer named Mansfield Frazier proposes what he believes is the most ideal strategy to both mete out justice for Trayvon Martin’s death and stave off an impending race war. He writes:
So what would a fair outcome look like? To my mind, the government offers Zimmerman a plea deal that has him back on the street within this decade, and he accepts it quietly. That seems like a conclusion most reasonable Americans could live with. Of course, no matter how long or short any sentence may be, there will be those who disagree, some vehemently.
No. In our legal system, a “fair” outcome is the one determined by a jury. As philosopher Robert Nozick put it “whatever arises by just means is just itself”. That’s the only metric of fairness in the determination of guilt or non-guilt. But I suppose Frazier is pretending that he’s the jury. And he’s already determined what happened between Martin and Zimmerman. He’s drunk the Kool Aid and believes that Zimmerman had no injuries to the back of his head, and he has swallowed the “analysis” conducted by two forensics voice “experts” that magically determined that the screams heard on a 911 phone call were not George Zimmerman’s.
This is a perfect example of the unconstrained vision versus the constrained vision of which I’m so fond of discussing. More precisely, liberals and leftists are concerned with equitable or “fair” outcomes while conservative types are more concerned with the integrity of the system, due process, and judicial process. There is actually no fair outcome. There should be a fair process. The end of that process is the acceptance of the jury’s decision – conviction or acquittal. To act otherwise is a radical undertaking.
For Frazier to be fearful of a race war tells us two things. First, that Frazier believes that an exogenous variable should enter the legal process. It should not. Angela Corey and the governor of Florida have ensured us that external factors have not swayed the prosecutor’s decisions up to this point. We should hope that the fear of a race war will not affect a decision to forgo trial if it would otherwise take place. Second, Frazier is telling us that he fears that black people will not accept a certain outcome. It’s not a question of whether justice was served or not served; it’s a question of how one constituency will react. This would set a horrible precedent. It suggests that justice is dealt for the side that has the most hostile infantry. It’s ‘might makes right’ all over.
And most interesting, Frazier speaks of a “race war” which suggests that there are two equitable sides fighting in the streets. Odds are long that white people or Hispanics will spark a war regardless of the punishment leveled against George Zimmerman. So we’re here talking, before all the facts are in, about how black people might react. We aren’t talking about how to prevent a race war; we’re talking about how to prevent blacks from becoming upset, rioting, and killing people.
By the way, by Frazier’s logic we should just vote for Barack Obama for the same reason.
(A side piece to Frazier’s article. He shows how out of touch he is when he writes: “And even if he were acquitted, let’s not forget the specter of a federal indictment being handed down.” This is typical for the left-set. They learned everything they needed to know in the first several days of the media’s onslaught against Zimmerman. All the other facts, possibilities, and interpretations are Teflon. So Frazier is still parroting the hate crime possibility which arose from Zimmerman possibly having said “fucking coons” on a 911 call. Since nobody who knows anything thinks that he used that word, federal charges are a “specter” only to the same people who think that race warriors should be jurists.)