But the Conquered, or their Children, have no Court, no Arbitrator on Earth to appeal to. Then they may appeal, as Jephtha did, to Heaven, and repeat their Appeal, till they have recovered the native Right of their Ancestors, which was to have such a Legislative over them, as the Majority should approve, and freely acquiesce in.
-John Locke

Friday, July 8, 2011

And Now The Part Where We Display How Reactionary Our Society Really Is

If the Casey Anthony trial were not a large enough spectacle already, the industry of outrage's flames are reaching the clouds.  Ok, we get it - a lot of people are upset at the verdict.  However, being upset or disappointed isn't enough for some people, and so we see full-on outrage.

But now things have gone too far, I think.  Now we have Caylee's Laws popping up in a few states.  The idea is that it would be a separate felony for a parent or caregiver of a child to fail to report the child's death or disappearance within a certain amount of time after the discovery of said death or disappearance.  At first blush, it's easy to think that this is a good idea.  One might think that such a law will help ensure that a nefarious parent or caretaker won't be able to get away with...something?  The theory behind the law seems to be that Casey Anthony got away with murdering Caylee because she waited a few weeks before reporting Caylee as missing.  Presumably, if this type of law had been in effect in Florida, Casey could have been convicted of a felony and everyone in America would be happy and unicorns would appear and fart rainbows all over the place. Of course, Caylee would still be dead...

I get that new laws are drafted to meet new deficiencies as society evolves.  This type of legislation does not represent a legitimate attempt to address a new area of lawlessness.  Rather, it is indicative of how reactionary we are with regard to the law.  Children are not a new aspect of society, nor is the need to protect children or recognize that children are a vulnerable class.  Casey Anthony represents an anomaly not the norm.  How many similar cases have there been?  I don't expect that so-called Caylee's Laws will have any impact towards protecting children, and therefore the law is merely another tool to extract vengeance when a child is killed. I also find the premise that a parent/caretaker who kills a child would then have a legal obligation to report the death or face more criminal charges somewhat bizarre.

The kind of logic behind Caylee's Law would be better used if we outlawed prosecutors from bringing such garbage cases to the jury.  I don't mean to suggest that Casey is innocent; the prosecution simply had no chance of proving a murder case and should have realized that at the outset.  But that's just my knee-jerk reaction...

In other important news: (h/t: Lucianne)