Feeling for justice 236

Nothing but the rule of law protects liberty.

Rule of law? Equality before the law? Objective justice? Rules of evidence?


Certain American judges are not concerned about whether or not a crime has been committed, but only about the depth of feeling that prompted the accused to do what he did.

The deeper the feeling of the perpetrator, the more justified his act.

And who is to gauge the depth of feeling?

The judge. That’s what he’s there to judge: the depth of feeling. The perpetrator who can convince the judge that he felt really, really deeply about needing to assault, deceive, rob, kill his victim, will be exonerated.

But since there’s no such thing as a Feelings Thermometer, what will the judge go by in judging the depth, the intensity, the degree of hurt feelings and/or moral outrage that positively compelled the perpetrator to assault, deceive, rob, kill the victim?

He will go by his own feelings about the feelings of the perpetrator, that’s what.

And how accurately he assesses the feeling-depth will depend, of course, on his own opinions, his own emotions, his own sympathies, which in turn might depend on his race, his faith, his relationships, his childhood, his hormones, his mood, his state of digestion, or any one or cluster of a thousand other factors that govern the interior climate of a human being.

If the judge is a Latina woman, for instance, like Supreme Court Justice Sotomayor, she may feel that if your special feelings as a Latina woman have been hurt by an insult, that will be a more mitigating circumstance than if an Asian male’s feelings were hurt by an equivalent insult. She can feel for her, but not for him. Although both the Latina woman and the Asian male reacted in the same violent manner, she will be let off, he will not.

So justice needs to be redefined. Judgment will be decided by prejudice. Verdicts will vary according to the respective opinions of the judges in each case. Luck of the draw: acquittal if the judge feels for the accused, conviction if the judge doesn’t.

Here’s a perfect example of the new “justice” on display. Judge Mark Martin has a deep feeling of sympathy with Muslims. This is what happened one day in his court:

Last year, a group known as the Parading Atheists of Central Pennsylvania (PACP) …  participated in a Halloween parade sponsored by the city of Mechanicsburg. They dress[ed] up in costumes representing “zombie gods,” figures that have risen from the dead according to various religious believers. One of those figures was a “Zombie Pope.” Another was a “Zombie Mohammed,” who was almost immediately assaulted by a Muslim man attending the parade. What happened in court as a result of that incident was yet another assault — on the First Amendment.

So Arnold Ahlert writes at Front Page, and he continues:

There is no dispute about what actually happened. Ernest Perce, Pennsylvania state director of American Atheists, Inc., was assaulted by Talag Elbayomy, a Muslim immigrantwho admitted attacking the victim. The attack was corroborated by a videotape (depicting a disturbance, not the actual assault). Both men called police to report a crime, both kept walking, and when they ran into police Sgt. Brian Curtis and related the story, Curtis explained to Elbayomy that Perce had every right to express his constitutionally protected viewpoint. Elbayomy was subsequently arrested and charged with harassment.

The case ended up in the court of Magistrate Judge Mark Martin, a veteran of the war in Iraq. (Many reports on this case also claimed that Martin himself is a Muslim convert, but Martin himself has corrected the record, saying he’s been a Lutheran for 41 years). During testimony, Elbayomy said he believed insulting the Prophet was a crime, and that he didn’t know American law allows for such representations of Muhammad. He also testified that he felt compelled to fight for the Prophet because his 9-year-old son was present at the parade, and he needed to set the proper example. In other words, the essence of Mr. Elbayomy’s defense was one that has failed countless times in countless courts around the nation: ignorance of the law.

In Judge Martin’s courtroom, however, the law took a back seat to the judge’s personal feelings. First, the judge refused to allow the corroborating videotape to be entered into evidence. He then disregarded the testimony of Sgt. Curtis on behalf of Perce, because Curtis did not witness the confrontation. Martin then dismissed the case for a lack of evidence, referring to the incident as “one man’s word against another.” He concluded the proceedings with a lecture – directed at Perce for his lack of sensitivity. Here is a partial transcript of that lecture:

“Having spent over two-and-a-half years in a predominantly Muslim country, I think I know a little bit about the faith of Islam. In fact, I have a copy of the Koran here, and I would challenge you, sir, to show me where it says in the Koran that Mohammed arose and walked among the dead. … Mr. Thomas [Elbayomi’s defense lawyer] is correct. In many other Muslim speaking countries – excuse me, in many Arabic speaking countries – call it “Muslim” – something like this is definitely against the law there. In their society, in fact, it could be punishable by death, and it frequently is, in their society. Here in our society, we have a constitution that gives us many rights, specifically, First Amendment rights….But you have that right, but you’re way outside your bounds on First Amendment rights …”

RedState quotes more of Judge Martin’s passionate outburst:

Islam is not just a religion, it’s their culture, their culture. It’s their very essence their very being. …  What you have done is you have completely trashed their essence, their being. They find it very very very offensive. I’m a Muslim [as well as a Lutheran? – JB], I find it offensive.

Arnold Ahlert concludes:

Since this story has begun to mushroom, Judge Martin has taken to defending his actions, noting that he had advised the defendant not to disseminate the above audio, because he might consider a contempt of court charge (despite the fact that Martin’s statement was made in open court). He defended his decision, saying that he “didn’t doubt that an incident occurred,” but that there were “so many inconsistencies, that there was no way that I was going to find the defendant guilty.”

Perhaps there were inconsistencies. But that doesn’t excuse Martin from considering what amounts to a Sharia defense, lecturing Perce about the sensitive nature of Muslims, or explaining that what he did could get him executed in some Muslim nations.The Constitution is precisely what separates us from from such nations, and Judge Martin’s ignorance of, or indifference towards, that document is shocking. 

Shocking to many still. But how long will it be before Sharia law is accepted as a parallel system in the US;  Muslims are privileged above all others before the law; and – worst of all for American freedom – judges need only consult their own feelings to determine guilt and innocence?