Amateur Lawyers Writing Scathing Briefs In Their Scathing Briefs

If you’re a conservative who’s spent the past decade or two assailing theStar Tribune’srigorous editorial pro-DFL, pro-”progressive”, pro-leftist bias, there’s some good news.  

Sorta. But we’ll get back to that later.   

Jay Larson of Saint Bonifacius t is apparently upset about the Zimmerman verdict, and has apparently seen enough episodes of Law and Order that he feels himself quite the Monday Morning county attorney, in an op-ed that the Strib opted to run in preference to goodness knows how many intelligent pieces they could have run:


In response to the July 15 editorial “Due process plays out in Zimmerman case”: Really?

It is a given that the state of Florida was dragged into the Zimmerman case kicking and screaming because of public pressure from the black community.

Now, I’m sure to Mr. Larson that means something different than it does to people who actually care about justice.

For most of us, the fact that the State of Florida – which is never shy about prosecuting people they believe to have committed crimes, and carrying out sentences with frothy abandon (from a large, full prison system to a legendarily-busy electric chair) didn’t opt to press charges was pretty clear evidence that there was no there there; that the homicide, tragic as it is, was justified on its face under the laws on the books in the sovereign state of Florida. 

To Jay Larson – who apparently believes Sam Waterson was a real lawyer – it means the “justice” system does, and should, respond to whomever cheers or jeers the loudest.   

Due process? What due process? I was appalled at the lack of zeal with which the prosecution tried this case. It allowed the key witness, a young uneducated black girl, to testify without being properly prepared — a girl for whom English was her third language and who was quite evidently intimidated.

“English was her third language?”

Does that sound racist to anyone but me?

And to paraphrase Donald Rumsfeld, you go to trial with the witnesses you have, not the witnesses you want.  While Mr. Larson would apparently have preferred the prosectors hire Halle Berry to play the role of Ms. Jeantel, it would seem to be an irreducible fact that the “uneducated” Ms. Jeantel was the best the prosecution could find on one years’ notice. 

Next, the prosecution brought the lead detective, who was supposedly there to bolster the prosecution’s case. He testified that he was certain that George Zimmerman was telling the truth. Why did he say that as a prosecution witness?

Offhand, I’d say “that he felt committing perjury would be a bad career move?”

I’ll give Mr. Larson of Saint Freaking Bonnie this much; he apparently watches a broad range of TV.  In addition to the diet of Law and Order that apparently qualifies him to back-seat-drive the prosecutors’ office, he also apparently watches enough CSI or NCIS to fancy himself quite the investigator:  

There were so many inconsistencies in George Zimmerman’s story of the events that night it was absurd to think that he was telling the truth. For instance, Zimmerman said that Trayvon Martin punched him 25 times and slammed his head against the sidewalk an additional 25 times.

If someone has been hit in the face 25 times, that person is going to exhibit a lot of bruising and swelling around the lips and eyes. Zimmerman had none. If his head had been slammed against the sidewalk 25 times, where is the concussion, where is the blood, where is the swelling?

Well, he doesn’t look quite curb-ready in these crime-time photos:

I’m neither a doctor nor Jay Larson, but this looks painful.

And I suspect when you’re getting your head slammed against a cement sidewalk ones count might not be utterly accurage.  Adrenaline makes detailed actions like “keeping running totals of how many times you’ve been punched and slammed to the pavement” difficult; also.  And I know this not just because the slamming illogic and assumption of Mr. Larson’s piece is making it difficult to think – it is, but it’s not from adrenaline, trust me – but because it’s one of those things they teach you in carry permit training, if nowhere else.   

How could Zimmerman have been constantly screaming if his mouth was covered by Trayvon’s hand and blood was running down his throat from his broken nose?

Question.  Perhaps because his mouth wasn’t constantly covered, perhaps?

 Where was the blood that should have been on Martin’s hands?

If he was slamming the head on the ground rather than punching it – as, by the way, the prosecution said he did?  There’d be no blood. 

How exactly did Zimmerman pull out his gun from his interior holster if he was laying on it? (Additionally, it would have been covered by Martin’s legs if Zimmerman was truly on the bottom as he claimed.)

Good point.  Clearly Zimmerman had his gun drawn as he walked onto the scene, pointing it where he was looking like a wanna-be cop, and waited until he’d been pummeled into near-submission before shooting. 

Alternately; the holster was accessible enough – which isn’t that hard to believe if Mr. Martin had normal legs, or was sitting facing Martin rather than away from himn, pinning the gun to Zimmerman’s stomach with his butt.

As to this next bit (in which I’ll add emphasis)…:

There was no due process in that courtroom. The only process exhibited there was the Jim Crow process of the old South. Granted, this wasn’t the lynching of a black man after a quicky trial. Rather it was the unlynching of a white man who murdered a black child.

I’m wondering if Mr. Larson is even a capable enough writer to know that he’s tacitly admitting that the malicious prosecution and mob-rule attack on Zimmerman was a “lynching”. 

Oh, yeah – the “good news” I talked about at the top?  Here it is:

For years, I’ve believed that the Strib editorial board would cherry-pick the letters and op-eds they’d print.  Now, that’s their right – but I’ve believed (not without justification) that they did it to slant the perception of their reading public by printing letters and op-eds from well-spoken, thoughtful (if usually wrong) liberals, along with a distortedly-pejorative sample of conservatives that sounded like cranks, crackpots and stereotypes.

And the “good” news would seem to be that the Strib, by printing the likes of Mr. Larson, is now giving the left at least a little of the same short, dismal shrift. 

It’s fairer, I suppose.  But is it really progress?

Comments welcome at Shot In The Dark.