For the past six years in an otherwise untarnished career, (in 2001 GW Bush chose not to pursue criminal counts associated with more gates than I ever swung on as kid…out of a sense of Christian charity I believe) Hillary Clinton (and husband Bill) have committed several acts that are illegal, at several levels. The evidence has grown enough that a newly-elected county attorney in Davidson, North Carolina could get an indictment from a grand jury, and could largely take a circumstantial case to the jury that would pass scrutiny based solely on the evidence at hand.
Still, all the talk is whether these ‘crimes” will effect Hillary’s political chances in 2016 and nothing about jail cells in minimum security facilities.
Meanwhile, a cub, a newly elected state’s attorney named Pontia Mosby strides to a set of microphones, and blithely hands six innocent men over to a mob that demand that they be crucified anyway, in the name of (best I can tell) a “higher justice.” However, Ms Mosby’s problem is that there has been found all sorts of things wrong in the charges she has brought, almost all evidentiary in nature, making the likelihood of getting those charges past the gaze of a trial judge growing dimmer by the day, and that the six men may be exonerated or gte off with little more than citations, so now she must find a way to extricate herself from the calamity to Baltimore that is sure to follow…not in the name of any higher justice mind you, but to save her sorry ass from a political beat down she originally strode to those microphones to enhance. Vanity, all is Vanity (Ecc 1:2).
In light of these cases, and the clear understanding that not only the media, but the vast majority of the public and the talking heads out there are concerned only about the politics, and the thrill of political combat, and not one whit about the Law and the Rules of Evidence, on which all “true justice” rests, you can see why Tom Brady’s punishment imposed by the NFL is such a big, big deal. For you see, Inflategate has drawn in millions of Americans who never knew Hillary Clinton even wanted to be president, or ever heard of Benghazi, and never saw one minute of fiery footage of Baltimore burning or know who Freddie Gray was. The lowest of low-information-voters have now joined the throngs of better-read political wonks who also don’t know the consequences of facts, and the pathway to find them.
A four game suspension sounds so modest, while a $1.9 million fine sounds a lot harsher. Especially for a speeding ticket….doing 65 in a 55 mph zone….on a day when the cop’s radar gun was broken, so he guesstimated it by noticing Brady was going a little faster than the rest of traffic.
No, really. That’s about all they got.
These things don’t matter if you hate the Patriots, as millions of Americans do. In fact, I don’t like them, and Coach Belichick even less. But Tom Brady, I’ve never given a second thought. But that’s the test, isn’t it, when you can overciome your prejudices to arrive at the truth.
If this Inflategate case were brought in New York City a jury would convict Brady in less than five minutes, but because of who he is, no more. That’s how sports fans are. And a Boston jury would acquit him in half that time, also only because of who Tom Brady is. Facts don’t matter. But the real question is, would a New York judge let such a case go to the jury? And I say no. No self-respecting judge (unlike a politically ambitious elected state’s attorney) would ever let a thin circumstantial case built entirely on hearsay (hint…not even admissible in court) even get to the jury. Even New York judges, liberal New York judges, have too much respect for the law than to besmirch their own personal reputations just to see a mob-based sense of justice brought to a conclusion. (At least in non-abortion, homosexual, and feminist cases.)
Tom Brady doesn’t care about the money. No, really. His reputation is much more valuable, especially since he has told the public he’s innocent. He cannot surrender that belief, even as everybody knows he likely speeds from time to time, just as Gaylord Perry put Vaseline on his baseballs from time to time. But all Gaylord ever earned was being tossed from the game. And he was caught red-handed…which, we’re told the oh-so-very-clever NFL could have done, but chose not to. Contributory negligence does lend itself to a conviction, let alone a stiff punishment.
Fans will learn a very valuable lesson if Tom Brady forces the league to prove this case in a venue where the Rules of Evidence trump “executive authority”. And I think he will.
If the sports base begins to look for evidence and truth in charges such as Inflategate, maybe they will look for it in national politics as well.