Saturday, June 27, 2020

Summary Justice Takes Over

Speaking of justice, we all know that our American concept of same involves granting the accused the due process of law. We have a visceral dislike of summary justice and of retaliatory justice-- to say nothing of lynchings. And we believe fervently in forgiveness-- we are strongly opposed to the concept of an unforgivable sin-- unless, to quote the New Testament-- it involves blaspheming the Holy Ghost. For those who are not very well versed in theology, Augustine interpreted it to mean that the only unforgivable sin was impenitence.

Anyway, we live in a time when all of that has been turned to rubble. Summary justice, destroying careers, lives and families, declaring the use of the wrong language to be an unforgivable sin-- these are the hallmarks of today’s Black Lives Matter protests. The radical left in this country has no use for due process of law-- certainly not when it comes to tearing down statues, fire bombing stores, assaulting police officers...regardless of the law. And those who are accused of thought crimes have no chance to defend themselves. 

Due process of law involves rational judgment and the rights to confront one’s accuser. It also involves being judged by a jury of one’s peers.

As noted, no one cares about that any more, a distinguished product of the Anglo-Saxon judicial system. Our radical left, lacking in the rational capacity or the temperament to engage in an unbiased determination of guilty or not guilty, has resorted to summary judgment.

They rationalize their position by saying that once upon a time blacks were subjected to summary judgment, even to the point of being lynched. They are simply returning the disfavor, by the law of the talion: an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. They would have done better to go back to the Bible where it says not to get even, but to do unto others as one would have others do unto you. This is to be found in the book of Leviticus and in the Gospels.

Anyway, where did our social justice warriors get the idea that we should dispense with the due process of law and proceed to retaliatory justice. You guessed it: they got it from the Obama Department of Education. By the use of administrative edict colleges and universities were told by the Obama administration that they were no longer to grant due process of law to any man accused of sexual assault. Presumably it would empower women and allow them to destroy men's lives on their say-so. 

The New York Times reports on the Obama rule, recently overturned by the Trump Education department (via Maggie’s Farm):

The Obama administration directives created a system centered on the person making the complaint. They discouraged universities from giving the accused the right to question accusers or to learn the identity of witnesses. In some cases, the accused could not see the full evidence against them. The rules defined sexual harassment broadly as “any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature.”

Perhaps most controversially, Obama officials encouraged universities to appoint a single official who acted as detective, prosecutor, judge and jury. And they set a lower bar to determine guilt, changing from “clear and convincing” to “more likely than not,” known colloquially in legal circles as the “50 percent plus a feather” test.

Now, it has all been changed by Betsy DeVos. The Times continues:

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos fired a shot last month in the nation’s culture wars, overhauling how colleges handle investigations of sexual assault and ending what she called Obama-era “kangaroo courts” on campus.

The new Education Department rules give more protections to the accused, primarily young men who face discipline or expulsion as a result of allegations of sexual misconduct.

As you may know, leftist advocate groups were horrified to see malevolent creatures like toxic males granted the right to due process of law.

The move set off a liberal uproar, denounced by unions representing teachers and college professors, by the National Organization for Women and by an array of Democratic senators. The Trump rules, they said, constitute a radical rollback of protections for victims who seek justice after sexual assaults.

And yet, unsurprisingly, a band of intrepid feminist legal scholars applauded the DeVos initiative. I say, unsurprisingly, because legal scholars have long objected to the Obama administration rules and have long testified in favor of the men who were unjustly convicted by said rules.

… an influential group of feminist legal scholars … applauded the administration for repairing what they viewed as unconscionable breaches in the rights of the accused.

“The new system is vastly better and fairer,” said Prof. Janet Halley, who specializes in gender and sexuality at Harvard Law School. “The fact that we’re getting good things from the Trump administration is confusing, but isn’t it better than an unbroken avalanche of bad things?”

Coming from law professors, it’s good news indeed. Unfortunately, those who have no use for the rule of law or the due process of law are now marching through American cities and through the American media meting out retaliatory and summary justice.

Now we know that such people ever had any use for democratic institutions.


urbane legend said...

Our radical left, lacking in the rational capacity or the temperament to engage in an unbiased determination of guilty or not guilty, has resorted to summary judgment.

Americans are a patient people. That patience is being sorely tried, and will soon come to an end. When the favor of summary judgment is returned, the radical and near radical left will scream their rights have been violated. This time no one will listen.

“The fact that we’re getting good things from the Trump administration is confusing, but isn’t it better than the unbroken avalanche of bad things?”

From the Obama administration, you mean. Fixed that for you, Prof. Halley.

Sam L. said...

"Now we know that such people ever had any use for democratic institutions." Seems to me that "ever" needs an "n" in front of it, to be correct.

Giordano Bruno said...

The rule of law is a fiction. You might get lucky, depending on what and where and to whom, but mostly you are going to get flayed. Ask almost anyone associated with Donald Trump about the rule of law. There is no law, only power, and political influence. What was done to Flynn and Stone was a message that you can dispense with the rule of law, in broad daylight, on the front page, and still get away with it. Sentimentality toward the idea of the United States having a law is dangerous, and I recommend you reconsider.

For example, if you defend yourself against a mob that is attacking you in a city, chances are you are going to be the one on trial. Your life will be destroyed. The police cannot defend or protect you, and if you take that God-given right to self-preservation seriously, you will be sent to prison for the rest of your life. The rule of law will see to that. Best to accept that there is no rule of law in large parts of America and stay out.

Rule of law depends on so many things, but primarily it depends on an honest and unified culture, based on commonly held religious convictions, about what is just and unjust. That common thread runs from the men and women on the jury all the way up to through the legal institutions to the cop on the beat. That whole chain has been blown to pieces in this nation. We do not have a common culture; we have a deeply fractured culture at war with itself. Rule of law died some time ago, about the time they began dismantling the tributes to the 10 commandments in all of our public institutions and changing the demographics into something unrecognizable in a mere 30 years. What you are referring to is the stench from the dead idea of the rule of law. That is still around.

If you plan to protect yourself, to have property, peace, and happiness, you're going to need a posse, a tribe, a family, or a cultural association to join and defend--and defend you. You must have your posse with you at all times and in all ventures. You need an organization that exists in an extra-legal capacity as the legal fiction becomes clearer to everyone. We had those things once in this country; every tribe had their own entities that settled things that could not be formally settled. Those entities were effective and they were feared. As Robert Shaw said in The Sting "Ya Falla?"

It has nothing to do with what's right, it has to do with where is a better place to invest your money and property, with the posse or with the rule of law. Rule of law will go to the strongest posse.

n.n said...

Twilight faith. Progressive Church. Pro-Choice, selective, opportunistic, politically congruent ("=") religion. Liberal ideology. Faith in mortal gods and goddesses to deal social (i.e. relativistic) justice. Some, select, Black Lives Matter. Let us bray.