A nation of laws a good thing

The Covington News - - Opinion - Tharon Gid­dens is edi­tor of The Cov­ing­ton News. Reach him at (678) 750-5011 or at tgid­dens@cov­news. com.

Our sys­tem of gov­ern­ment and law is a messy, aw­ful/won­der­ful thing, si­mul­ta­ne­ously won­drous and puz­zling.

That was ev­i­dent on Tues­day when a jury in Florida found Casey An­thony not guilty in the death of her tod­dler, Caylee.

Caylee was re­ported miss­ing in June 2008 and her body was found a hal­fyear later, ac­cord­ing to Associated Press re­ports. The cause of death was never de­ter­mined, but many folks lo­cally and across the nation had fol­lowed the case and made up their minds over the mother’s guilt.

Ju­rors saw it dif­fer­ently, re­turn­ing guilty ver­dicts over lesser counts that An­thony had lied to law­men.

The ver­dict drew out­rage from our Face­book friends, who pro­ceeded on a lively con­ver­sa­tion line.

Here’s what Rose Wal­ters-Stage­meyer had to say: “SHOCKED,DIS­GUSTED AND JUST DOWN RIGHT SAD that poor Caylee did not get the jus­tice she so de­served!!!”

And here’s Michelle Strick­land Autry’s take: “sad­dened for the lit­tle girl b/c jus­tice wasn’t served for her and to­tally out­raged with the jury and the whole ju­di­cal sys­tem!!!!!”

Stephanie Rea­gin Mote ex­pressed sim­i­lar senti- ments: “My heart­felt (con­do­lences) to The Jus­tice Sys­tem. I was sorry to hear that part of you died to­day.”

And then there was Bran­don Mcdon­ald, who of­fered a voice of rea­son in an emo­tional con­ver­sa­tion line: “We can all use com­mon sense to know she is re­spon­si­ble for her child’s death some­how but it was clear early on that the state had very lit­tle weak ev­i­dence to con­vict her. Al­though we may not be happy of the out­come, let’s be glad we have a sys­tem that re­quires proof to send some­one to prison for life. She will live such a tor­mented life she will wish she was in jail.

“Oh, and let’s not blame the pros­e­cu­tors, they can only present what ev­i­dence they have.”

Emo­tions are un­der­stand­able in such cases, but Bran­don noted how the case re­flects what’s won­drous about the case, how our sys­tem, im­per­fect though it is, works.

Ju­rors did their job and gave their ver­dict.

We are a nation of laws. It is an im­per­fect sys­tem, yes, but again it is a magnificent man­i­fes­ta­tion of that found­ing prin­ci­pal of us all hav­ing an equal op­por­tu­nity un­der the law. The mob is over­ruled. The over­whelm­ing voice of pub­lic opin­ion will be heard, as is ev­i­dent on our Face­book con­ver­sa­tion line, but the law pre­vails. The sys­tem works. We should all be grate­ful.


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