Justice, is supposed to be blind. It seems like it has been a awhile since we have seen the scales tip as they should. Life’s virtuous dance is a comedy of errors, frequently performed with you walking home one night; and a young derelict asks you for a smoke – you don’t, so you apologize you don’t have anything to give him. But as you continue to be on your way, you feel a sharp pain in your back and then another in your arm as you turn around to watch this vagrant repeatedly stab you. As he runs away you plead for the woman across the street to call the police.
Shortly thereafter disposed in your hospital bed, you overhear they picked up your assailant jay-walking, with the knife, your blood on it, in his hoodie-pocket – the woman who helped call the police for you also identified him and he is arrested for stabbing you.
While you continue your physical therapy you see on TV that the knife isn’t admissible because it was found without probable cause, because they only stopped him for jaywalking – and the woman is discredited because she wears eyeglasses and wasn’t wearing them at the time because she needs them only for reading – furthermore, it’s revealed that there is a pornographic theater somewhere in her neighborhood, so clearly her character is in question…
The guy who stabbed you…his attorney will say that he was fondled by his 4th grade basketball coach and you were mocking him for not being able to afford his own cigarettes that he needs for his medical condition. So now as you look forward to months of rehab and the real possibility that you will not be able to hold more than a box of Kleenex for more than 2min and going up the stairs will require grandma’s motorized chair-lift, because the one lung that functions properly gets you as far as the laz-y-boy to the TV – all charges end up being dismissed and you wonder where is your equity? This allegory is not far fetched – we’ve watch it all unfold in a myriad of ways across this country in real time. Like a cop who busts a motorist for having over 200lbs of drugs in his trunk, being inadmissible because the officer pulled him over for not having a front license plate, and the state does not require it…
It’s all so fortuitous, justice being defined only by “rule of evidence”, and several institutions are failing to get it right. The NFL resembles a kangaroo court of it’s own – at times almost a facsimile of the actual ideology in real life. Hizzoner has said that justice for the Browns and the Falcons will be swift and severe. The Browns for texting staff and coaches during football games. The Falcons for pumping in crowd noise. Crowd noise that did not help a team that went 3-5 at home. Stupidity is punishment enough and has never been an acceptable excuse – for the Browns they deserve the death sentence as an organization with no control. As for what the severe penalty(s) will be…who knows…it could be draft picks, fines, suspensions, no more caviar in the owner’s box, and all beer must be served at room temperature, in red solo cups from Budweiser. We know the NFL esteems the safety of QB’s more than women and children – the going rate for a player who abuses women is 2 games or time off with pay – if it is simply child abuse, just time off with pay…so what will the punishment really be from a league tribunal, who claims a balance sheet defense, being unable to afford endzone cameras – Belichick is still lobbing profanity laced tirades at the Oligarchy of old rich white men.
Justice? One rule change to aid officials in getting the call right is turned down and another is made because everyone forgot the rules – turning something legal, illegal. The “illegal type thing” is the innovative play the Patriots used against the Ravens. The NFL has decreed swiftly to punish creativity and innovation – while rewarding the soap-opera of fools. All the creativity of Belichick did was line up multiple men along the line of scrimmage, but outside the tackle box. Any youth football coach will tell you to ignore a player who lines up along the line of scrimmage between the split end and the tackle – that player is a decoy. Simple right?
But instead Hizzoner ruled it was too much for a professional athlete to have to think about such complicated, unorthodox formations – as the forward pass was once thought of. Someone like John Harbaugh should know better, being a son of a coach, whining, calling it an “illegal type of thing” – it isn’t, but who knows what that even means – the rule is clear as it relates to how many can lineup on the line of scrimmage, how many must, who is eligible and all told to the referee who announces it, so it is far from deceptive. Innovation is a fundamental right, but then again, change is hard for troglodytes and….
Justice, seems to be best served cold – like revenge. Served up when a governing body is tasked and created to keep institutional control from spinning out of instituional anarchy. Existing to prevent rogue nation-states of education from creating an unfair advantage on the field of play – rogue’s like SMU, Kentucky and USC. But who watches the watchers? What do you do when internal affairs makes up the rules as they go – how does law and order get upheld and when does justice prevail? For the NCAA it doesn’t. It does what it wants. It fabricates, oversteps and turns away whenever it feels like and decides that its ceremonious power is absolute. You either become what you hate or fall victim to what it is you hate and the NCAA is now emerging from the muck as the bastard child, as rogue as any of the institutions they pretend to serve. They regulate peanut butter instead of searching for real corruption. They profit from every contest the “student-athlete” participates in, but when that same student barters free merchandise they received in a NCAA-sanctioned event for other services – they swing the hammer and tattoo justice. Decades of child-abuse and assault is swept under and given a blind eye, when they chose to reinstate arbitrary wins – completely missing the point of what “lack of institutional control” actually means. Miami gets nothing and USC’s Todd McNair gets a show cause penalty for no evidence of wrongdoing. Typical misguided NCAA Frontier-Justice.
The NFL, the NCAA, all frauds, as is every other entity that believes they merit justice fairly and with principle while we watch their hypocritical maneuvers and insane decisions, only to wonder when does the scale tip back towards due process. Watching the faith we had in Justice disappear is sad and confusing. Justice is a backbone of democracy, essential to the Republic – you lie, cheat, steal etc, you pay the price – now its all shrouded in a fog of mistrust and disbelief – being manipulated by corporations and governments – leaving imitation justice merited out on the small and large screens, prostituted by Hollywood – the whole thing is out of order.
I’ll leave you with this…enjoy the Madness and your weekend.