Subj: Slap & Kiss
Date: Tuesday, February 11, 1997 7:41 PM
CC: Judge, Connie, Pat, Trille
Hey JasperJust read the e-mail from Judge. Good
stuff. Ive included you, Judge, in this letter, but I wont be bombarding you
with a lot of stuff youre not at all interested in.
The CTV threads must be down; tried all morning to get in.
Think they might be closing out volume 5 and setting up for volume 6? I wouldnt mind
seeing some blank pages and the opportunity to start again. Looks like weve all
managed to hurt each others feelings.
Judge, weve had a hard time. I also started reading
long before I started posting. In a perfect world, everything you say in your note would
work, probably even in a group that meets personally. Cyberspace makes it difficult to
initiate any curative actions within the group. Pat Whetham (Crowe) comes the closest to
being able to referee. And its a constant thing for her to keep trying to ask people
to look at how their posts might be hurtful to others.
When you read the threads, its obvious that some are
using the "kiss and slap" method. Its a tried and true management
technique, especially useful with young employees. You slap them, but then you always come
back and kiss them. If you post something adverse to certain opinions, they immediately
slap you, maybe by insulting you, maybe by making fun on you. Then, to make it look okay,
they come back and offer you solace, trying to turn you to their point of view. If it
doesnt work, they slap you again, then kiss you.
There are some who have taken all they can, and they just
come back slapping. Actually, they are at least more honest. They are not trying to
manipulate those of opposing opinions. I also agree with Pat and Jasper, there are several
on the CTV threads that are racist and mean-spirited.
Welcome Judge. Hope youll come on the threads and see
what you think when you actually start trying to have an open interaction with some of the
Subj: Re: Slap & Kiss
Date: 97-02-11 17:23:18 EST
To: Hhhana, Trooper
CC: Connie, Pat, Trille
Hey Paula Thanks. I kinda figured what you said was
the case. Some people remain idealistic. Guess that is just my nature. Now... where is
that Kiss... :-) You folks are great and I hope after O.J. we can still exchange
information, ideas, jokes, and etc. PeaceJudge
Subj: Re: Our Rights
Date: Monday, February 11, 1997
Hi guys ...I think the Justice Dept. office of Civil
Rights should be contacted, because OJs civil rights were certainly violated, not
the least by having an extremely biased judge, helping the LAPD and LADA VIOLATE HIS
CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS. For those who disagree, I think you should think HOW YOU WOULD LIKE
IT IF IT HAPPENED TO YOU; AN ILLEGAL SEARCH WARRANT ISSUED BY BIASED COURT SYSTEM, POLICE
TREAT YOU AS A SUSPECT BEFORE THE BODIES ARE EVEN COLD. EVEN BEFORE LAPD WENT TO
ROCKINGHAM, THERE IS PROOF AT LAPD HEADQUARTERS, OJ WAS CONSIDERED A SUSPECT. I think it
is horrible that OJ was a suspect before the LAPD HAD EVEN FOUND ANY BLOODSTAINS OR
FOOTPRINTS OR ANY EVIDENCE.
THINK ABOUT THIS. THIS IS A TRAVESTY OF JUSTICE. AND NOW,
THIS VERDICT WHICH VIOLATES EVEN CALIFORNIA LAW (ADMITTEDLY NOT MUCH). ARE WE GOING TO
ACCEPT THIS OR ARE WE GOING TO FIGHT? ARE WE GOING TO LET THEM TRAMPLE ON OUR, YES OUR,
RIGHTS, BECAUSE THIS IS NOT JUST ABOUT O.J.!! Trille
Subj: Re: Our Rights
Date: Monday, February 11,
To: Hhhana, Lion, Trille
Trille, hang on a minute. The judge stayed the punitive
damage award for 10 days. According to California law, he cannot let it stand. Lets
wait and see if he has guts enough to do the right thing. Not likely but you never know. I
know he wouldnt have the guts to overturn the verdict and call for a new trial but
he just may knock the amount down to make it comply with the law in California. Sure hope
so. Pat (Crowe)
Sub: Our Rights
Date: Wednesday, February 12, 1997 3:25 AM
CC: Hhhana, Pat, Petlady, Dable, Judge
Trille Im afraid that most people know damn
well this isnt just about OJ. Its about people who can see themselves as
victims of the lynch-mob mentality that was unleashed against OJ and those who cant.
Most people cant see themselves as victims like OJ because they dont see OJ as
one. They see themselves as advocates and activists for justice. They see OJ as a
murderer. They see the system as corruptbut not in the way we do.
They see "liberal" judges and unprincipled
lawyers letting criminals (as opposed to defendants) go free when "everybody
knows" they should go to prison or die. They have their own idea of what criminals
are, what "they" look like, what "they" sound like and what kind of
evidence is sufficient to know for certain that "they" are guilty. You said it
yourself in your timely observation about the different categories of humanity who were
subject to official persecution for being different. Were all different in one way
or another. Injustice is, therefore, never about just one person or one group, because
where it is allowed to thrive, you can never know who will be next.
Nevertheless, most people in this country simply cant
see themselves as defendants in a criminal case because the cant see people like
themselves being arrested and tried for a crime they did not commit. By the same token,
they would not see themselves as criminals even if they planted evidence, misrepresented
evidence in court, lied under oath or broke a dozen other laws, as long as they did it to
get someone they "knew" was guilty.
Its all in how you see yourself and "them."
We, the majority, have nothing to fear. Its only the minorities, the bad minorities
who deserve what they get. Jasper
Subj: Re: Our Rights
Date: 97-02-12 13:41:42 EST
Hello Jasper I certainly agree with many of your
comments re: Our Rights. My view of the O.J. trial is: it was a murder trial vs. one man.
For many African-Americans the criminal trial was evidence that if one had enough money
and good attorneys maybe the judicial system will work. This was not wrong or right: it
just is the way it became... bigger than the issues in the case. We as African Americans
have been on the other side of the stick for so long it obviously felt good to many to see
the system get its butt whooped.
The criminal jury decided that O.J. was not guilty. His
presumption of innocence continues because only a finding of guilt strips one of this
presumption. This innocence of guilt allows us to participate in the process, i.e. vote,
run for office, etc. This is important to realize. The jury in the civil trial found that
he was responsible. Responsible is not the same as guilty. The standards are different.
Many have conceptual problems with two trials on the same
issue. American jurisprudence in general supports the proposition that issues should be
decided only once. Of course appeals are allowed in as much as there is always a need to
be sure the trial judge or trier of fact made its decisions based on the facts and applied
the correct laws. Also appeals are intended to allow a monitoring of the trial to make
sure the due process rights of the individual litigant(s) was not violated. It is clear
that to allow multiple adjudications on the same issues undercuts the faith in the
process. None would argue with the need for finality in resolution of conflicts.
There is a principle in law called Res Judicata. It
prevents the same issue from being addressed more than once. No allowance is made for a
second bite on the issue. This bar to second bites only applies when the issues are
identical and the parties are the same. In a criminal case the state and the accused are
the only parties. The stakes are liberty or the possible deprivation of liberties. In
contrast, in civil cases the parties are individuals versus other individuals. (Federal
questions of violation of civil rights is a different issue and would require another page
or two to discuss.) As a general rule in civil actions the purpose is to enjoin wrongful
action, declare what is the law, and/or compensate for wrongful actions.
Sometimes punishment is allowed in civil actions to deter
what society labels malicious harmful actions. In addition to the differing parties and
objectives, civil and criminal trials have one other major difference. The burden of proof
is different. In criminal trials the proof must be beyond reasonable doubt. Whereas in a
civil proceeding the burden is usually by a preponderance unless it is re: children, then
the burden is by clear and convincing evidence. I find no fault with the civil jurors
finding it more probable than not that O.J. is responsible. The burden was not difficult
to meet, considering the evidence and the help the 13th juror provided. More about that
The criminal jury was right in its finding of not guilty.
Even one of the white jurors stated that she would have voted not guilty with the evidence
that was submitted in the civil case. There is absolutely no question that race did not
directly come into play in the criminal trial. I do not believe that the jurors let O.J.
walk because he was African-American. Nor do I believe as many have suggested that
Cochran, as eloquent as he was, convinced the criminal jury to ignore the facts and send
America a message (jury nullification). Many of the criminal jurors stated flat out that
they did not make a decision based on race. Not just the African-American jurors indicated
this, but so did one of the two white jurors, Anise something-or-other. As I stated above,
race was not a direct issue but as you have argued, it did play in the issues.
I know of no African-American who has not been treated
unfairly by the law enforcement community or at least knows of someone who has been
treated unfairly. The jails are full of these cases. Some are on death row. We
African-Americans cannot help but have a jaundiced view of law enforcement and the
American Justice Process, i.e. courts. So race did play in the decision [Editors
note: And what about the testimony of and about Mark Fuhrman? If you leave that out of the
evaluation, how can you have any real doubts about O.J.s guilt. You cant. As
you will see, Judge didnt]. African-American juries across America find
African-American defendants guilty all the time. However when you have the type of
suspicious evidence produced in the O.J. criminal trial there is no doubt in my mind any
honest, and reasonable American would have to concluded that the state failed to carry its
burden. Yes there was lots of evidence, but every vital piece of evidence, whether it was
the DNA, blood vials, bindles, glove, or whatever, had mystery and or suspicion
The prosecution in the criminal case was rushed. As a
result arguments were being heard as evidence was coming in. The state was always on the
defensive. I guess thats what they get when they rushed to judgment and the defense
says OK, bring it on, speedy trial. Brilliant move. Only money allows for that approach.
My main reason for coming on these boards was to argue for
the jurors in the criminal case. Not to necessarily agree or disagree with anyone. Shit
man, everyones got an opinion. I could care less whether someone, white or black,
agrees with me. My opinions are like others.... just opinions. What is important is the
jurors in the criminal trial not be made out to be villains. They gave up a large part of
their life without pay. They were dedicated and serious. In hindsight I am sure they wish
they had stayed in that four-cornered stuffy jury room, had coffee, ate donuts, asked for
evidence, and then rang that bell. Hindsight is 20/20.
Would the civil jury have "deliberated" as they
appeared to have done if they did not have the advantage of hindsight? We will never know.
I thought it telling when "white America" was convinced that the verdict was
guilty and not one newspaper, TV, or radio commentator have a problem with the quick
verdict and "lack of deliberation." It infuriates me when someone suggest that
the criminal jury was somehow incapable of or incompetent in doing its job. When it is
suggested that the Santa Monica jury would have come to a different result I get pissed.
To draw that conclusion is so speculative. Overtones of racism are abundant. Now I agree
that race would have a play in the issues. The white jurors would not be so inclined to
buy the tampering. If, however, they became aware of the reality of the criminal justice
system, ie. cops lie, prosecutors sometimes coach and accommodate lying witnesses, and
"scientists" slant their results to fit the result they want, who knows what the
results would have been.... speculation.. speculation...
My gut feelings regarding whether O.J. did it or not should
not be the issue. Armchair juries are just that, armchair jurors. We cannot substitute our
perspective for that of the jury. We, sitting in our homes, make our decisions based on
all that we have heard. Some accurate and some not. The civil trial should have been aired
so the world could see what the jurors saw. So the world could see the 13th juror at work.
(Another reason I am pissed about the civil trial).
The judge was so biased in his rulings it was sad. I refuse
to believe he did not know that he was violating laws of evidence in many of his rulings.
It offends me that the process was tainted by a judge who apparently saw his job as one to
correct a "wrong." So what if he is retiring. Now this episode in our history
continues. Which, of course, at least keeps before the world the issues of the fairness of
the justice system as perceived by minorities. It, however, is not good for the kids.
They, I think, are the real big losers.
In conclusion, my friends, I appreciate your counsel but I
have never been one to follow the path of anyone unless I choose to do so. Never will I
allow myself be used as a tool. Nor do I go about things the same way as maybe another. If
I communicate with the "other" group, it will be my choice. I will never be
embarrassed by my choices in life. Hopefully you will respect my decisions as to who I
communicate with. Hopefully if I choose to communicate with those that you find
distasteful you will not draw conclusions that I am some Uncle Tom or something. However
if you do, it is truly your prerogative. I aint mad at you [Editors note:
What kind of people would we be if we made judgments like that? How could he suggest that
we would? Hopefully, Judge will see what an insult such statements were to us, and that we
did not judge him on his choice of correspondents, but on what he chose to say and with
whom he chose to share it].
As I stated in my letter to the group, I am 42 and believe
me when I say my profession is full of folks that believe I have no place in it. My
concern was: if this group intended to communicate it would succeed only if those who
treat each other with total respect. I read enough of the notes to know that many of you
have cause to be upset. However two wrongs do not make for right.
Your choices are clear: Ignore those you perceive that do
not see you as equals; Point out the offense and try to cure the problem so attempted
communication can continue. Go to another discussion group, etc. I guess I could go and
read the other offensive notes but I frankly cannot see the purpose. There is no doubt
from what I read that much of your complaints are justified. My personal style of problem
resolution in the context of this situation happens to be different from your style. I
just like to stay out of the mud. Both King and Malcom X had different styles. Same
objectives. As you said we are all intelligent. We live by our own guidelines. Peace
P.S. This note will be sent to all regardless of which
group they may be in... I am kinda fed up with folks telling me who to and who not to be
wary of... I have lived on this earth for some time. I can fend for myself.