Thursday, July 7, 2011

Rock of Ages


I am growing increasingly disappointed and saddened by friends in faith who would have been perfectly happy if Casey Anthony had been found guilty in less than a day, and therefore subject to the death penalty, but who are outraged over a finding of not guilty in that same amount of time. It has all taken on the tenor of a lynch mob, and the anger doesn't seem to be directed solely at her. The jury is being vilified, and Nancy Grace (how's that for a last name full of irony?) is leading the charge.

Ms. Grace is an attorney. She should know better than anybody else that a verdict of not guilty doesn't mean that the jurors believed she was innocent -- it never means that. Years ago my husband served on a jury for a trial dealing with the theft of a window air conditioning unit. I should explain here that he has always struck me as a "hang 'em high" kind of guy, so you could have knocked me over with a feather when he told me after it was all said and done that they found the guy not guilty -- but that everyone in that courtroom knew he was. The state had not proved its case. They had clearly shown Point A and Point C, but had neglected to provide a Point B. (And do not think for a minute that I'm putting the death of a child and the theft of property on the same level.)

Hate it all you want to, but when the State decides to charge a person with a crime -- particularly one in which death at the hands of the State is an option -- then they had better have a Point B.

It doesn't matter whether I think/believe Casey Anthony did any or all of the things for which she stood accused. If she had been found guilty, and sentenced to death I can well imagine that there would have been a cheer go up amongst the bloggers who were frothing at the mouth for her to come to justice. They might very well have called it God's justice, as though He requires us to give him the go-ahead for such.

You either believe God is a God of justice, even when you don't understand how or when it's going to work, or you believe that the mob should decide, and you're hoping construction starts on some new coliseums very soon.

In all of this, I have found myself wondering, what would Jesus do? How would He have me respond?

Seems to me that when He was confronted by an episode of mob justice He squatted down, picked up a stick, and began to write in the sand.

Go ahead. Pick up the rock.

I dare you to sling it. 

5 comments:

  1. Sweet friend, I understand from where you write this, I do. But as someone who has been intimately involved in a similar case, I understand the outrage as well.
    I served as a jury foreman for an animal abuse case and saw the whacked out way that people on the jury process information.
    Tim, my hubby, believes we need professional jurors. When he first suggested it, I thot he was crazy. Now I'm beginning to see some logic to it.

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  2. Thank you, Darren.

    Karen, I understand the outrage. It's what friends in the faith are doing with it, couched in righteous indignation, that is bruising my heart. As for Tim's suggestion, I've given that a lot of thought over the years, too. I'd have to disagree, mainly because I believe it opens the system up to corruption at levels we can't even begin to imagine. I also can't forget that those who sentenced Christ to die were professional jurors, and the angry mob affirmed their decision.

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  3. so very well stated! AMEN!

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  4. This is so true. Thanks for eloquently putting down in words what many of us felt.

    I also wonder that if the death penalty had not been on the table, the prosecution might just have been in a better position to prove this crime with the jurors knowing the penalty would have been life rather than death? Then as I read reports, it all came down to evidence and well, the prosecution could not prove guilt. The prosecution lost this case rather than the defense attorneys claiming Anthony's acquittal as their victory. There are no "winners" here and AMEN on your comments re. Nancy Grace - the woman should be ashamed of herself.

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