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Sunday, December 11, 2005

Writing on Toilet Paper 


Portions of a transcript from today's Fox News Sunday:


JAMIE FOXX, ACTOR: I don't know if a lot of people really understand what he has done. He wrote on pieces of toilet paper books for children to read to tell them not to do some of the things that he did in his life and end up where he was....

JOHN MONAGHAN, PROSECUTOR: The murders were senseless. They were very brutal, and that Mr. Williams should pay the ultimate penalty for his crimes....

PROSECUTOR ROBERT MARTIN: Let me say at the outset, Chris, that I respect the opinion of those people who oppose the death penalty, and clemency is provided by the government for those exceptional and rare cases that are appropriate.

I don't believe that Stanley Williams qualifies on those grounds. He's non-repentant. He has committed multiple murders. Friends and acquaintances have come into the courtroom and testified that he bragged about the killings.

The people that he killed were — it was senseless because to do the robberies, he didn't need to kill anybody. He's devastated the Yang family. He's devastated the Owens family. At the trial, documentary evidence of a mass murder escape plan was in his own handwriting.

He was tried by a racially mixed jury....



At this point Chris Wallace cut Martin off to let Bianca Jagger speak.


I would like to say that with respect to the other things that he said -- let's take the case of Mr. Martin, for example, who insisted in dismissing three of the jurors because they were black.

Furthermore, the California Supreme Court has reversed two of his cases, in the cases of People vs. Turner and People vs. Fuentes, because he engaged in inadmissible racial discrimination.



Wallace then cut Jagger off to let Martin respond.


Both of those are distortions. No court ever reversed on the basis of anything that I did. Both of those cases she mentioned — the court said that the judge did not carry out the procedure he was supposed to carry out when any jurors are challenged.

And as far as dismissing jurors, the two black jurors, one was a schoolteacher who said she could not really be away for three months from her classrooms, and she would not be able to concentrate on the evidence. The other was a psychologist who said that he would pay more attention to psychological things than he would the evidence.



Guess what Wallace did? Actually, he asked Jagger a question first.


WALLACE: Let's talk about this question of redemption on the part of "Tookie" Williams. He has never admitted that he committed the crimes. He has never, therefore, apologized for them.

And perhaps even more important, he has never provided information to police, while he's been in prison, about The Crips gang and other murders that have been committed. Does that really indicate redemption?

JAGGER: [after questioning the evidence in the case] I think that this whole idea that he did not provide evidence against The Crip is just the new evidence that they're finding in order to discredit him.

What more do you want from someone who has work, who has written nine books, who has been nominated five times for a Nobel peace prize, who has done everything to turn away young people from violence and from a life of crime and that look to seem as a role model?...



In the give and take, Martin makes a point that I made earlier (in response to PanCrit):


[W]e can't say that there's a moral equivalency between four brutal murders and co-authoring some children's books. I think society is not going to accept that.


From the Ontario Empoblog (Latest OVVA news here)

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