Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Sometimes I wonder Why We Have Courts at All

besides my ideological objections to identity politics, there’s the practical drawback, as well. once questions of individual justice become confused with the fuzzy logic of “social justice”, facts invariably becomes obfuscated and discourse falls to the pre-adolescent nadir of finger-pointing and mutual recrimination.

the perfect illustration can be seen here, in this piece by jack dunphy at NationalReviewOnline concerning the police shootings of three unarmed men here in new york.

dunphy gives himself away at two distinct points. once when he says, “As in other large cities, crime in New York follows predictable ethnic patterns” and again by his assertion that what “happened earlier this week in Queens” was a “confrontation between cop and criminal”.

this piece is ostensibly a rebuke of mayor Bloomberg for rushing to judgement and for placing the appearance of justice, the mayor surrounded by a phalanx of “community leaders”, over the facts of the case. after reading the NRO piece, the question should be obvious: how has dunphy done anything different? the main thrust of the column seems to be (1) they were shot by cops so they must be criminals and (2) of course black males warrant increased scrutiny from police, they commit all the crimes.

the issue of whether an individual is guilty or not is a matter for the courts, and not for the court of public opinion; that goes for white cops as well as black suspects.

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