Skip to comments.Senator Craig - Guilty by reason of insanity
Posted on 08/29/2007 10:21:01 AM PDT by Balt
11:53 AM 8/29/2007 - It's been a long time since there's been an entry here. So what? Your Priestly Pugilist has been busy, so what's it to ya? And since your PP is in a bad mood, I might as well put you in a bad mood, too, with an opinion you'll probably disagree with.
Way back in the 1/26/07 post, we gave a hint of our opinions about the presumption of innocence. The subjects then were a couple of priests who had been accused of abuse; and, while their diocese had conclusive evidence that they were innocent, allowed them to be railroaded out of the priesthood anyway, even after law enforcement refused to prosecute. I won't rehash the details: go read it for yourself. Again, in the 3/6/07 post, discussing the Duke Lacrosse team, we had a chance to rail on the subject again. This time, I will rehash:
Im old enough to remember a time when there was, among those involved in law enforcement, a horror for the idea of sending an innocent man to prison; so much so, that it was considered far worse than taking the chance of letting a guilty man go free. Now, our bloodthirsty population seems to take just the opposite attitude, insisting that someone pay for every crime (or even every suspected crime), regardless whether that person is actually guilty. Does anyone remember Clearance Thomas? - Its not the evidence, but the seriousness of the charge....
Now, Senator Larry Craig of Idaho has been accused of "sending signals" to an undercover police officer in a public rest room which, according to the constable, indicated a desire to engage in lewd behavior. The liberal press had jumped all over it (and thereby making all of us mind-numbed robots jump all over it, too), primarily because the senator is a conservative Republican who believes in "family values." Based on the presumption that conservatives are always stupider than liberals, applying Sean Hannity's blue collar, cut-and-slash brand of "shoot first and ask questions later" style of judging others on moral grounds, the press hopes to have us (conservatives) torpedo one of our own for them; and it'll probably work.
Here's the part where I hope to make you angry - assuming you're one of those blue collar conservatives who actually thinks that Sean Hannity has working brain cells. In what lewd behavior did Senator Craig engage? The "sending of signals?" How do you know the supposed "signals" the senator sent expressed a desire for lewd behavior? How do you know they were, in fact, signals of any kind? Because the policeman says so? How do you know the policeman is telling the truth? Because he's a policeman? Or could it be that you know yourself that toe-tapping while on the throne means you want to do something nasty? How would you know that? Hang around a lot of public rest rooms, do you? If I'm sitting on the throne with my iPod plugged in listening to Japanese pop music (which I have done, by the way), tapping my toe to the tune, should I be arrested? After all, I'm a priest, which means (according to the press) I'm ripe for some kind of nastiness 24/7. Lock me up.
Fox News Radio (which we get here in the capitol of blue collar conservatism), has already tried and convicted Craig, And why not? As dutifully expressed by a caller-in (you can't live around here without making at least one obligatory call to a talk show at least once a month), a mother of small children who doesn't know now if she can send her little boy into a rest room alone, Craig is just a sick pervert who needs to be locked up and the key thrown away immediately. Who can argue with that? After all, "the children!!! blah blah blah." Everything, of course, is about the children.
So, here's my question: Is it possible to desire to apply the presumption of innocence rigorously in a case like this without appearing sympathetic to lewd behavior? Were I to have the opportunity to ask Sean Hannity that question, he would most likely respond with a plethora of questions of his own, fired back at 80 rounds per minute, like "So, you think children going into rest rooms should be at risk???" The truth is, for him, the answer to my question should be "no;" and, in the verbal malae that would ensue, the salient point would be lost: to wit, in the case under consideration, no one has said that any lewd behavior has occurred. "That's not the point," Sean would scream, the concerned mother clinging to his arm. "These perverts have to be taken off the street!" Now, who can argue with that?
I don't know what Senator Craig's intent was in tapping his toe while giving birth to a fiber log. In fact, I don't even know he was tapping his toe, since the only witness to this is the vigilant constable. I do know that Senator Craig will most likely loose his job because someone said that he did something which indicated that he probably wanted to do something which he never got to do but would have done if he had been able to get away with it which he couldn't only because someone else knew what he wanted to do and caught him in the act of wanting to do it.
I don't know about you, but I feel safer.
by Priestly Pugilist
I’m getting tired of the Craig toilet story. Can’t we just do a courtesy flush and move onto the Clintons hooking up with some chinese $$$?
I like how Craig’s water carriers like to mention only the toe tapping and not the hand under the partition into the stall where the cop was.
How many men on this forum, ever, even once in their lives have
a) stared so intently at a guy in a stall that he knew the color of your eyes, and
b) played footsie with the guy in the next stall by accident, and
c) placed your hand in a stall known to be occupied (by virtue of the earlier footsie incident), not once or twice but 3 times, and
d) pled guilty to a disorderly conduct charge for these same events.
In a court of law, sure, we can go with the presumption of innocence. But while we’re all here shooting the breeze around the virtual water cooler, does this not strain credibility to the max?
A good point, but part of my point was: How do we know there was a hand under the partition? Because the cop says so? That's not good enough for me.
I can perhaps understand someone tapping his foot a few times, idly thinking to himself, “I need more salads for lunch”. I can even understand how someone’s foot *might* bump into the next guy’s foot (if he were hovering over the toilet, not wanting to sit), but beyond that, his story just swirls round the bowl.
Isn't it credulity that gets strained?
On the toilet, it's neither credibility nor credulity that gets strained.
A good point, but part of my point was: How do we know there was a hand under the partition? Because the cop says so? That’s not good enough for me.
Stop quoting the facts. He pled guilty, but he said he was not guilty and not gay. You need to drink the Kool-Aid.
Did I say “strained?” I meant “stained.”
How about, because he pled guilty? That good enough for you?
Just watch this clip of Craig. The Gaydar goes off the meter here:
Look, the toe tapping and hand under the partition are still not enough to prove anything. I am not defending the man, I just think that he was stupid to admit to anything. It’s not a crime to be gay, and they actually have no proof of any illegal behavior.
Point #1. According to the policeman, there was considerably more going on than toe tapping.
Point #2. At this time there is no reason to disbelieve the policeman.
Point #3. Mr. Craig has a history of homosexual allegatiions being made against him.
Point #4. At the time of the airport incident an Idaho newspaper was running an onging campaign to out Mr. Craig as a homosexual. If I were him I would have been dang sure no one could misconstrue my behavior anywhere.
Point #5. Nothing that Mr. Craig did subsequent to his arrest makes any sense if he was innocent of the original charge—engaging in lewd conduct. Quite the contrary, everything he did is something a guilty person would do in the desperate hope the incident could be hushed up and go away.
That said, I think Mr. Craig is a sick man. His press conference yesterday demonstrated the depth of the denial he is in. As a human being I feel sorry for the man. I expecially feel sorry for his family. His out-of-control promiscuity has probably destroyed all that he loved. So sad.
You’re right on.
Many illegal activities are observed only by policemen. Sometimes these may be documentable (video or tape recording, for example) and sometimes they’re not. However, when a policeman/woman testifies it is considered factual so long as there is no reason to believe otherwise. In the end, juries must make judgements as to the varasity of all the evidence presented—both prosecution and defense. As a general rule a policeman’s testimony carries significant weight with the judge and/or a jury.
Understanding, as someone said earlier, we are around the virtual watercooler here, there is no reason yet given to mistrust the policeman.
There are several ways the policeman’s account could be impeached. 1. He or she has a history of lying under oath. That’s gonna be a rare bird, because a policeman who lies in his oral or written reports— or court room testimony—is likely to be fired as soon after the review board hearing as possible. 2. It could be proven that the police officer was looking to entrap Mr. Craig. There is no evidence so far that such is the case. I’m sure there are other scenarios, buy you get the drift.
usually it’s my knees that are strained. I believe the expression I used is appropriate under the circumstances. But I’m sure credulity can be strained as well.
Look, the toe tapping and hand under the partition are still not enough to prove anything.
Is the guilty plea enough to prove something?
Maybe things are different in the ladies room, Eva, but on no planet, ever, under any circumstances does a man put his hand underneath the partition into another occupied stall without a really good reason.
And the only good reason I can think of off the top of my head is if the 2 guys are deaf, and are continuing an earlier conversation using sign language.
I’d be interested in hearing what possible, innocent reasons you can come up with for the hand under the partition.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.