Ferguson: thankful for the Founding Fathers’ legal legacy
The American race riots – Ilana Mercer gets real
Grand-jury deliberations were conducted behind closed doors. The decision was announced at night. It was too dark. Jurors were given too much information to absorb. The St. Louis County prosecuting attorney was not sufficiently involved in the proceedings. The latter, Bob McCulloch, was too “cold” in sharing the hard facts of the case with the public. His remarks were excessively long or redundant all. The police were too passive in their response to the pillage that followed the unpopular decision.
These are a few of the complaints voiced by the “Racism Industrial Complex (RIC)” against a grand-jury decision in the shooting death of Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Missouri. A quorum of ordinary Americans has determined that Officer Darren Wilson was not “the initial aggressor,” that the officer “acted in self-defense”; that he “was authorized to use deadly force,” in a situation in which he found himself being punched—and then bull-rushed by a demonic-looking mountain of flesh, Michael Brown.
Brown’s interactions with Officer Wilson would have been fueled by a consciousness of guilt which likely amplified the young man’s aggression. For prior to being shot, a surveillance video had surfaced of Brown roughing up and robbing a shopkeeper. The “Big Kid” was no gentle giant; he was a brute. At the time of their fateful encounter, Officer Wilson suspected Brown of robbing a convenience store.
“The Racism Industrial Complex (RIC),” explains the term’s originator Jack Kerwick, “include the majority of journalists and commentators in corporate media; most academics in the liberal arts and humanities departments of America’s colleges and universities; entertainers; and politicians. In concert, they labor fast and furiously to ensconce within the American consciousness the idea that blacks and other racial minorities are perpetual victims of ‘white racism.’”
Commensurate with the “RIC” narrative, Michael Brown’s blackness is mentioned always in mitigation; Wilson’s whiteness as an aggravating condition.
Right away, the governor of Missouri, Jay Nixon, promised “a vigorous prosecution.” Feeling the heat from the head honchoes of the “Racism Industrial Complex” (Attorney General Eric Holder and President Barack Obama), Nixon had sought to indict the white officer as a gesture to the Brown family. It is alleged, moreover, that Missouri’s governor and the DC “RIC” are behind the meek response to the November riots, underway across the country.
I hate to say it, but these riots are an object lesson as to what transpires in certain chaotic communities when the police practice peaceful resistance.
Let’s face it: had St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch, a Democrat, opted for an open, probable-cause hearing before a judge, as opposed to convening a grand jury, the “Racism Industrial Complex”—forced to face a decision not to its liking—would be decrying the despotism of this single judge. They’d be calling for a jury of the people’s representatives, as bequeathed by the Founding Fathers, in the 5th Amendment of the Bill of Rights. The grand jury institution, as legal analyst Paul Callan has explained, “was actually created by the Founders to provide a wall of citizen protection against overzealous prosecutors.”
Had the decision been revealed in the AM, the RIC herd would have argued for a night-time reveal.
Had Mr. McCulloch meddled with the jury, he’d still be accused of rigging the outcome against Brown.
Had McCulloch hand-picked the evidence for the grand jury, instead of providing the 12 jurors with access to all of it—a “document dump,” brayed Big Media—he’d have been accused of concealing information.
Had the cops moved to curtail the crowds from “venting” over “legitimate issues,” caused by “the legacy of racial discrimination”—they’d have been convicted of police brutality.
As to the affective dimension, McCulloch’s alleged frigid demeanor: a silent majority whose “culture” is being crowded out still finds such WASPY mannerisms comforting and familiar; a sign of professionalism, dignity, decorum and rationality. Profoundly alien and disturbing was the wretched excesses of Michael Brown’s mother (Lesley McSpadden) and her new husband (Louis Head)—both of whom have had brushes with the law—howling “Burn This Bitch Down.”
Regrettably, at the time of the shooting, this libertarian column had expressed the opinion that Brown was the victim of murder-by-cop http://www.ilanamercer.com/phprunner/public_article_list_view.php?editid1=783. I was wrong. Far from the militarized mob, a remarkable process has unfolded in Ferguson. Praise for it belongs to Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch and a grand jury selected by a judge, in May of 2014, long before the shooting occurred.
McCulloch’s remarks were impressive. They revealed the exhaustive scope of the search for truth undertaken by a grand jury that was left to its own devices. Since the text of the statement has not been disseminated, I’ve summarized some of it for interested Americans. Particularly brilliant is the manner in which McCulloch co-opted the DC “RIC” in support of the rule of law, in Ferguson, Missouri:
St. Louis county police conducted an extensive investigation at the crime scene together with agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, at the direction of Attorney General Eric Holder. Together they sought out witnesses and gathered additional information over a period of three months, beginning on the day of the shooting death of Michael Brown. Fully aware of the growing concerns in parts of the community that the investigation and review of the death would not be full and fair, St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch decided to hand over to a grand jury all physical evidence related to the case, all individuals claiming to have witnessed any aspect of the events and any and all related matters. The grand jury comprised of 12 members of the community.
Federal investigators worked closely with local law enforcement, with the St. Louis county police and persecutor and Attorney General Holder and his department vowing to follow where the evidence led. These federal investigators shared information with St. Louis county investigator and vice versa. In addition, the Department of Justice conducted its own investigation and performed its own autopsy. Yet another autopsy was carried out by the Brown family and all information was shared and collated. All testimony before the grand jury was immediate forwarded to the DOJ. Eyewitness accounts were compared with the physical evidence. Many witnesses contradicted their own statements and the physical evidence.
As an example of witness testimony that contradicted the physical evidence McCulloch offered numerous statements that claimed to have seen Officer Wilson stand above Michael Brown and fire many rounds into his back. Others claimed that Officer Wilson shot Mr. Brown in the back as he was running away. Once the autopsy was released showing that the deceased did not sustain injuries to his back, statements to that effect were retracted. Others admitted they had, in fact, not witnessed the shooting.
All statements were recorded and presented to the grand jury before the autopsy results were released. There was no “document dump,” as some media claimed. Two of Bob McCulloch’s assistants presented the information to the jury in an organized, systematic manner. All jurors heard every word of testimony and examined every item of evidence presented. McCulloch described a proactive and engaged group working since August 9th to do their due diligence. In the course of 25 days, the jury dissected over 70 hours of testimony and listened to 60 witnesses. They heard from three medical examiners and many other DNA and forensic experts. They examined hundreds of photographs and looked at various pieces of physical evidence. They were instructed in the law and presented with five possible indictments. Their burden was to determine, based on all the evidence, if probable cause existed to determine that a crime was committed and Daren Wilson committed that crime. There is no question that Officer Wilson caused the death of Michael Brown by shooting him. However the law authorizes an officer of the law, and all people, to use deadly force to defend themselves in certain situations. The grand jury considered whether Officer Wilson was the initial aggressor, or whether he was authorized to use deadly force in the situation and acted in self-defense.
They were the only people who examined every piece of evidence and heard every witness. They debated among themselves. After an exhaustive review of the evidence the grand jury deliberated further over two days to arrive at their final decision. And it is that no probable cause exists to file any charges against Officer Darren Wilson. They returned a “No True” bill on each of the five indictments. All the evidence, witness statements included, was made public.
Not even the unethical, ongoing, subversive interventions from the attorney general of black America and the president of black America, on the side of the Brown family, swayed a grand jury guided by the search for truth. For fact-finding is the essence of the law—the law is not an abstract idea of imaged social justice that exists in the arid minds of the perpetually aggrieved.
Unfortunately, “the Racism Industrial Complex” (RIC), also sees law as a weapon, to be co-opted to its ends.
We should give thanks for a prosecuting attorney and grand jury who grasped the evidently archaic idea of ordered liberty. This is a good outcome for American justice.
ILANA MERCER is a paleolibertarian writer based in the United States. She pens WND’s longest-standing column, “Return to Reason” and is a Fellow at the Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies. She is a Quarterly Review Contributing Editor. Ilana’s latest book is Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America from Post-Apartheid South Africa. Her website is www.IlanaMercer.com. She blogs at www.barelyablog.com