Again, from Roger Shuler of legalschnauzer I found a very interesting observation to share with you.
By the way, this is not the first time I've found something comical in this serious business of following a corrupt justice department. For example, in researching the Paul Minor case in Mississippi, I was stunned to see the jury instructions regarding bribery from U.S. District Judge Henry Wingate, another Republican appointee. Here's how Wingate's instructions read, in part:"You may find specific criminal intent even though you may find that the rulings were legal and correct, that the official conduct would have been done anyway, that the official conduct sought to be influenced was lawful and required by law, and that the official conduct was desirable or beneficial to the public welfare."You don't need a Harvard law degree to understand the absurdity in these instructions. Essentially, Wingate told the jurors: "You may find the defendants engaged in criminal activity even if you determine that their actions were legal--in fact, even if you find their actions were required by law." Gee, no wonder the defendants were found guilty.That's like saying, "You may find Herman Blokes guilty of theft even though the $100 he picked up off the desk belonged to him, and therefore, it was legal for him to pick up the $100 and walk away with it."I understand that jurors tend to be obedient creatures and probably are a little bit in awe of a judge and the trappings of legal authority. But you would think someone on the Minor jury would have said, "You know, this part about being able to find someone guilty even though their actions were legal . . . somehow that doesn't sound right to me."But so far, Henry Wingate has gotten away with it. . . . Ah, justice in the Age of Rove. Isn't it grand?
I, the Gulf Coast Sur-Realist, will now comment to the legalschnauzer how Henry Wingate has gotten away with it as I was sitting in the courtroom for the full 2 1/2 days that Wingate read aloud the jury instructions. Please note the convoluted spiral of obfuscated garbage. Imagine listening to this for 2 1/2 days! Let me assure you that everyone in the courtroom, especially the jury, tuned out after the first five minutes BECAUSE THEY HAD THE REASONABLE EXPECTATION OF HAVING A COPY OF THE JURY INSTRUCTIONS TO TAKE WITH THEM TO THE JURY ROOM! With a written copy, they could have questions about absurdities like this. And guess what else. His royal highness, the judge, LEFT THE COURTHOUSE FOR A SPEAKING ENGAGEMENT WHILE THE JURY WAS DELIBERATING, THUS HE WAS NOT AVAILABLE TO ANSWER THEIR QUESTIONS THOUGH HE WAS SUPPOSED TO BE THERE! He is either too blatantly ignorant of the law to keep his seat on the bench or too corrupt to keep his seat. YOU be the judge!!!!!