Saturday, October 6, 2018

We’re getting a double-blow over just how split our society has become

Guilty, to the second degree
Perhaps it was all-too-appropriate that Friday in Chicago was a cloudy overcast day with a chill in the air and soggy sopping wet. In short, a miserable day that perfectly reflected the miserable events that reflect the social split that our society faces these days.

Friday was the day that a jury in Cook County came back with a guilty (of sorts) verdict against Jason Van Dyke – the Chicago police officer who faced criminal charges related to the shooting death four years ago of a teenager.

Will Kavanaugh receive the ultimate prize?
ALTHOUGH THERE ARE those who want to see the case of nothing more than a white man with legal authority using it to kill a young black man.

That is a case where the legal outcome is going to manage to offend just about everybody – and not just those people who live in Chicago. Some of us were all too eager to see a cop go down to defeat, while others will see anything that doesn’t coddle a cop as evidence of our society gone awry.

As if this isn’t enough to leave people p-o’ed, we’re going to get a similar response either Saturday or Sunday from Capitol Hill in Washington. At about the same time that a Cook County jury neared completion of its two days of deliberations Friday, the U.S. Senate took a procedural vote that narrowly (51 to 49) voted to advance the process for filling a vacancy on the Supreme Court of the United States.

The scene is now set for a final vote possibly Saturday (although I’ve heard reports of at least one senator being unable to attend that day because his daughter is scheduled to get married – and he’s not about to miss that big event!).

WHICH MEANS THE split at the federal level between people who think Brett Kavanaugh is unfit to serve on the nation’s high court and those who want to think he’s being attacked by (as they insist on viewing it) hysterical broads making stories up is going to get those same people all riled up.
Police conduct itself on trial in some minds

Things are looking more and more like the Senate WILL go ahead and confirm President Donald Trump’s appointment of Brett Kavanaugh to serve on the Supreme Court (which is a life-time political appointment).

There will be people who will feel that the legitimate concerns of women are being ignored because Republican officials are eager for a politically-partisan victory. Some of them may well be the same people who think there had to be a “guilty” verdict against Jason Van Dyke, or else a miscarriage of justice will have occurred.

PERSONALLY, I BRACED myself mentally some time ago for the concept that Van Dyke would NOT get whacked with “GUILTY!!!!” on every single criminal charge – which is an outcome some people think is the only appropriate one. Although the ruling of guilty of second-degree murder, combined with all those convictions of aggravated battery, could be seen as a way of appeasing all while satisfying none.

So while I know Van Dyke’s family has said they wouldn't be surprised if he’s found guilty of something because they feel like political people want that outcome to appease the public, I seriously expect people are going to be upset for a long, long time regardless of what happened Friday.

It may well be a double-whammy for some if the U.S. Senate gives Kavanaugh their support.

While I’m also sure there is a segment of society that will be totally pleased with such outcomes. We are, after all, living in the Age of Trump – in which a right-wing element wants to think they’re taking over again and erasing all the deluded, liberal attitudes they want to believe have corrupted us.

OF COURSE, WE could get the societal split, so to speak.
Does it all come down to Donald Trump?

What with Kavanaugh getting confirmation of his appointment, but Van Dyke getting some sort of verdict that turns him from a law enforcement officer to a convict, of sorts.

I’m sure the right-wing ideologues will have fantasies of their own, in which a right-leaning Supreme Court ultimately has an opportunity to rule on an appeal filed on Van Dyke’s behalf. Would an “Age of Trump” court be sympathetic?

And are the news happenings of this weekend leading into the Columbus Day holiday  (a holiday whose very existence offends some people) going to be the cause of countless protests – which were already up-and-running Friday even before a verdict was announced – that will take place for many years to come?


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