Justice till they get it right….

The third murder trial of Cal Harris has ended in mistrial.  The saga of this case, now spanning nearly 14 years, has burnt through millions of taxpayer and private dollars, hundreds of jurors spending tens of thousands of hours in difficult deliberations in three counties and shines a bright light on what happens when a justice system goes haywire.

Michelle Harris was last seen either on the evening of September 11, 2001 or the morning of September 12, depending on who you believe.  While many people saw Michelle on the 11th., only one has come forward that claims to have seen her on the 12th., Kevin Tubbs, local farmer and Harris neighbor.  Tubbs came forward after hearing that Cal had been found guilty, realizing that the time frame for Michelle’s disappearance, according to the prosecution, was at odds with Tubbs own observations.  Not only did Tubbs testify to seeing Michelle on the early morning of the 12th, he also stated she was with a “young, clean-cut man”, standing together at the end of the Harris driveway, the very spot in which Michelle’s van was later found abandoned.  Tubbs testimony caused Judge Martin Smith to vacate Harris’s guilty verdict in the trial.

The following facts are not in dispute.

Michelle Harris has seemingly disappeared.  The Harris’s were in the midst of a contentious divorce at the time of her disappearance.  Cal Harris is charged with her murder.  No murder weapon has been identified.  No body has been found.  Both Michelle and Cal had extramarital affairs.  It’s complicated.

The following statements, while not facts, are widely held as true.

Cal Harris was generally disliked in his hometown of Owego and Tioga County.  The Harris family is rich while most Tiogians are poor.  Original prosecutor and now Tioga county judge Gerald Keene saw the Harris case as his moment in the sun and took the proceedings personally.  It became the Harris money against the will of Gerald Keene.  Giant egos, political aspirations and machismo combined to forge a fight to the finish.

Michelle Harris could be on a beach in Madagascar.  She could have walked away, fled or been carried away, we just don’t know.  She could be dead at the hands of someone, anyone else, again we just don’t know.  And all of that is not enough to assume
Cal Harris is a murderer.  This is what Judge Martin Smith wrote in vacating the murder verdict of Harris in 2007.  “The evidence at the trial of this case was entirely circumstantial. The proof of guilt, although legally sufficient, and establishing guilt to the jury’s satisfaction beyond a reasonable doubt, was far from overwhelming.”

“Overwhelming” should be the standard when you’re contemplating sending a man to prison for the rest of his life.  If ever there was “reasonable doubt” in a case with no body, no weapon and complicated lives, this is it.

The ”system” ought to stand down on haunting Cal Harris and his family.  A forth trial would be justice delivered by blunt force trauma.


Utopia, Meet Reality

What happens when the truth collides with political correctness, (PC)?

The following statements are the truth, each referenced to its fact source.

  1. Blacks in America commit overwhelmingly more crime than do their white counterparts.  By “overwhelming”, I mean at approximately six times the rate of incarceration for crimes committed as compared to the representative proportion of the white population.  Ref.  US Bureau of Justice Statistics.
  2. Blacks in America commit more than 50% of all homicides yet represent less than 13% of the population.  Ref. US Bureau of Justice Statistics.
  3. Of nearly 1 million violent crimes committed in the US every year, approximately 85% of those are committed by blacks.  Ref. New Century Foundation.
  4. Of the nearly 8,000 black homicides committed in 2007, approximately 93% of those killers were also black.  Ref. US Bureau of Justice Statistics.

This is what the critics say and I will demonstrate why they too are incorrect.

The PC crowd says that because blacks are unfairly singled out by police, they occupy more jail cells than do whites.  To swallow that argument, you need to assume wide spread racial animus amongst the police, which is unfairly provocative and completely unproven and furthermore, this argument forces one to conclude that hundreds of thousands of whites, having presumed to have committed hundreds of thousands of un-solved crimes, are free in the streets of America.  This is patently preposterous.

Once you offer this counter argument to the PC worshipper, they usually come back with the old faithful race card, claiming decades of mistreatment, discrimination, impoverishment and hopelessness have created circumstances so dire that crime is the only outcome.

This old shoe is the most easily cast-aside because it traps the worshipper in a snare of their own making.  For 50 plus years, the aftermath of The Great Society has been supposedly addressing these woes by throwing billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of social workers at the problem, all consisting of PC theory and social solutions.  50 years later and still no meaningful change, yet the PC savant sees no irony in this colossal failure?

Now if from this data you draw the conclusion that blacks are more prone to crime and violence than are whites, you would be possessive of common sense and statistically correct while being presumed a bigot simultaneously by those who worship at the PC alter, not because you are wrong, but because you are failing to ignore the facts and the truth.  You see, being PC is about the concept of clicking your heels three times and hoping to awaken to a new world, created in the utopian concept so hoped for in the PC’s mind.

But to keep these facts in proper perspective, let’s look at some other interesting statistics.

  1. According to activist Richard Lapchick, 78% of all National Basketball Association, (NBA) players are black.
  2. The National Football League, (NFL) census states that 68% of those players are black.
  3. Men commit more than 90% of all crimes than do women, according to the US Department of Justice.
  4. Men commit over 90% of all homicides as opposed to women, according to the US Department of Justice.

If the PC crowd was consistent in their logic, they would be questioning why whites are so under-represented in professional basketball and football.  And if men and women are each 50% of the population, how is it possible that nine times out of ten it’s the men committing the crimes?

But these facts are not dilemmas to the PC crowd because they only see their demons where they want them to be.  The PC worshipper begins with the premise that whites are evil and blacks are downtrodden.  Beyond that beginning supposition, critics needs to dig out from that basis point before any meaningful conversation can begin, and the point is, the PC crowd is not looking for insight, information or illumination, they are seeking validation, vindication and unwavering obedience to the illogical church they have built on the foundation, ironically, of atheism reconstituted as surely as any religion.

Blacks commit more crimes by far than do whites.  Blacks are better at professional basketball and football.  Women are very unlikely to commit crimes.

The world in which we live is not of a utopian nature.  Tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, floods and lava flows kill millions all over the world.  The playing field of life is not a controlled environment nor is it level.  It is not possible to have assured outcomes when dealing with human behaviors and an infinite number of variables.  Personal responsibility is the key to all of our futures.

This is the best I can offer to my PC friends and to the world of folks who see themselves more as victims than as the most fortunate people on the face of the Earth, spoken from one the greatest cheerleaders the United State of America has ever known, former President of the United States, Ronald Reagan.

“You and I have a rendezvous with destiny. We will preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we will sentence them to take the first step into a thousand years of darkness. If we fail, at least let our children and our children’s children say of us we justified our brief moment here. We did all that could be done.”


Good & Evil

As a founding member of a local not-for-profit government watchdog group, I have learned some very telling lessons about government and human nature and in neither case can I report to you anything remotely encouraging.

What began as an effort to shed light on governmental activity and to assure accountability, fairness and efficiency resulted in unexpectedly painting a bulls-eye onto the organizations own back.  While I expected to find some limited examples of corruption, I was stunned to discover wide-spread examples of it, along with the methods to mislead, lie and justify built into the systems themselves, in anticipation of exposure.  These weren’t examples of good systems built with good intentions gone bad; these were bad systems built with fails-safes and greedy intent gotten worse, proved unsustainable and finally exposed.

In hind-sight I should have known better than to expect overwhelming support when so many rely upon the continuation of the dysfunction, secrecy and malfeasance to sustain themselves either through their employment, political affiliations or in many cases both.  This is one of the by-products of the continued lowering of the bar when it comes to matters of integrity, honor and honesty; an endless supply of excuses, justifications and lies necessary to lend credence to the behavior becomes the mantra of those so engaged.  Eventually, the lies repeated become the truth when all involved are profiting; that is

until it all comes apart when the reality of the schemes unsustainability slaps everyone along side the head.  When pointing these realities out, the organization became the object of scorn, so to distract from the truth and away from examination of the cancerous systems themselves.

Like the Wizard of Oz, “Don’t look behind the curtain.”  Nothing to see here but malfeasance, dishonesty and greed, all nicely packaged as public services.  And when you have the temerity to expose such things, you get threatened.  Threatened with boycotting, ostracized in certain areas of the professional community and excluded from certain circles of influence, based on positions and opinions.  Some of the threats have actually been carried out, resulting in tortious interference with business commerce and contracts.

The rot in the system runs to the core because the rot was a component of the systems very creation.

226 years ago, in Federalist 51, James Madison, writing as Publius says,  “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.  If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.  In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.  A dependence on the people is, no doubt, the primary control on the government; but experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions.”

Today, some of us embrace the task of exercising “auxiliary precaution” and we won’t stop seeking the truth, even while fear chases courage into silent hiding.

Fear is fomented and catalyzed by political correctness, (PC.)  As the PC movement gains temerity by tormenting everyday people with threats of ostracisation and marginalization, they have set their sights on the outright attack to be waged against Christianity in general and Christians specifically.  Prior to this new-found boldness fostered by success in Indiana in cowing the political class into re-writing the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, or RFRA, the PC gang, while clearly holding Christians in contempt, stopped just short of frontal attacks on the core values of the institutions and concentrated instead on the individuals.

That strategy has clearly changed just recently and I for one am glad for it.  Let’s get this battle started right now.  My gloves are off and my mission is clear;  I’m here to bloody the nose of the PC crowd and push it back into the closet in which it hid for so many years.

The new goal of the PC crowd is clear, it is brilliant, and if successfully will succeed in bringing down society as we knew it.  In short, a PC victory here will mean, “game over.”  This is a battle between atheism and the religious world.  This is the battle of our lifetime.

Once the concept of God is negotiated away or prohibited from consideration, swept into quaint obscurity or otherwise relegated to the concept of fable or relic to the past, then all is lost in the name of the secular decree of man as god.  With that loss goes all hope for concepts of honor, valor, dignity, humility and humanity, all internal gages provided to us by a living God.  Making this mistake ignores the compass God gives us all in favor of the politically correct GPS that navigates by way of convenience, convention and ease.

Our entire reason for existence as a nation was the pursuit of religious freedom.  Not freedom from religion, not an exiled colony devoted to atheism, but a place where religious practice was tolerated without edits dictating affiliation to a religion of the State. The signers of our formative documents were overwhelmingly religious men, mostly Protestants, four were actually preachers.  The creation of the documents themselves were then and now widely considered, “instruments of Providence..” this according to Benson John Lossing’s work, “Biographical Sketches of the Signers of the Declaration of American Independence”, (1848), generally considered the seminal work on the subject.  Even a more-or-less casual awareness of these documents leaves the thoughtful in awe of the inspirational magnitude of the beauty and polished symmetry of the words.

The fifty-six signers of our Declaration of Independence were truly awe-inspiring men of character and honor almost impossible to imagine by today’s standards of acceptable mediocrity.  Knowing full well that in signing this decree they were in effect signing their own death warrants, this is how they ended their treatise.  “And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

In today’s, “Oprafied”, homogenized, metro-sexualized America, the concept of a pledge of this gravity, made to one another using such daunting words, makes little sense so bastardized is our modern language, but in 1776 they were counting heavily on God and on each other, no matter what the costs or obstacles, up to and including fiscal ruination and death, but what did they save for the very last word?  Honor.

No greater honor have we than in defending this great country and the inheritance these brave men died giving us.  Only a God fearing people can be entrusted with that which God provided.  It is ours to lose or ours to treasure, but impossible to keep without a renewed commitment that would make god and our founders nod fondly in approval.