Tuesday, June 14, 2005

People Magazine JohnnyBlog Style

Late on Monday afternoon, CNN.com had a poll on whether or not you would change your religion to date Tom Cruise. How sad is that? At least when I last checked, the vote was something like 95% No to 5% Yes. However, since the poll was unscientific, perhaps more than 5% of Americans would compromise on this topic for TC in reality.

I have not followed the Michael Jackson case much at all, but it seems rather dubious that the case was not strong against him for all of the ten counts. The celebrity even got off on the most limited counts leveled against him. It feels like Jackson benefited from how big his name was and how good a lawyer he could afford.

People are much more likely to get all “12 Angry Man” and shit if the guy is famous. Seriously, I do not know if the holes in this case constituted true “reasonable doubt”. However, people nowadays expect a case to be like some cheesy TV court drama where there are two eyewitnesses to a crime being committed and a suspect confessing on a stand due to a blistering barrage of questions from a hotshot prosecutor. Reasonable doubt does not mean that it is possible that the person is innocent, but that there is significant and real doubt that he is guilty. Jurors’ desire to obtain some high form of judicial virtue has perhaps swung things a little bit too far towards letting off anyone rich enough to afford a good attorney.

In the end, perhaps it is much harder to win a case where it is possible that a crime never happened (child molestation) versus one where it is clear that something did happen (a murder). Then again, people usually are so enraged about molestation that when a non-celebrity is accused of it, the jury is itching to send the guy away for a long time.

News and Opinion From Around the Web:

ESPN: Tyson, the Tortured Soul

Reuters: Cat Piss in Fax Machine Causes House Fire in Japan

BBC: French Serial Imposter Posses as 15 Year Old Student

AP: More than 1 Million Americans HIV+, Blacks Now Majority of New Cases

ESPN: Crowe on Cinderella Man

AP: Identical Twin Brothers Could Lead Poland

Volokh: Religious Reasons for Lawmaking

Steyn: The 21st Century Will Be an Anglosphere Century

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