8th Amendment

My Persistent And Impossible Dilemma

My Persistent And Impossible Dilemma

14th Amendment, 8th Amendment, citizenship, civics, community, conflict, constitution, critical judgment, Discernment, Enlightenment, Equality, First Amendment, Ideology, Juries, law, political rhetoric, Rationality, Uncategorized
The following is a true story.  It is a story that has been haunting me for the past 20-plus years. The reason it has been haunting me is because I may have been inadvertantly complicit in convicting a man of a serious drug charge by denying him the benefit of the principle of the presumptive innocence of a defendant in a criminal trial. I make no judgment as to the man’s actual guilt. That will be as it may. The point, rather, is that, in retrospect, I believe that we, the jury in the trial, followed the letter of what seemed in retrospect to be a very bad law and -- pursuant to that law -- presumed the man to be guilty, and that this presumption seemed to be “hard coded” into the relevant drug-possession law.  At the time, we believed we acted in good faith, because we believed o
Bull-Sh** And The Bully Pulpit

Bull-Sh** And The Bully Pulpit

14th Amendment, 5th Amendment, 8th Amendment, activism, anger, autonomy, awareness, Challenge, Change, citizenship, civics, conflict, conservatism, constitution, critical judgment, culture, Current Events, Discernment, Education, Enlightenment, Ethics, Executive Order, Fascism, First Amendment, Fourteenth Amendment, Freedom, Ideology, immigration, justice, law, Nihilism, political rhetoric, Politics, postmodernism, Presidency, progressive politics, Quasi-War, Rationality, republic, Secularity, social justice, Tolerance, Trump, Uncategorized, Xenophobia
Several times in the process of playing my role of “voice crying in the wilderness” against the plague of Trump and Trumpism, I have encountered relatively temperate and relatively reasonable Trump supporters who said that, no, they were revolted by Trump’s advocacy of violence against his critics, prejudice against Muslims, the muzzling of a free press, and his condoning of sexual assault, because, yes, they recognized the reality of offenses in all those areas against personal dignity and constitutional liberty. But … you could hear the thundering hoofbeats of the "But" all the way across the Galaxy … Trump did advocate several policies they supported. And, besides, they concluded, the Presidency was, by the design of the Framers, a pretty weak office, anyway, in fact, more or less a