HammRadio Today: 9/4/2007 --
Solving the Murder Crisis? Arrest 71 year old for 41 year old crime
9/4/2007 8:04 PM
Byline: Mike Cunningham
It seems I might be a hypocrite. I still think this is Double Jeopardy. But in the end.. .I'm just a lousy hypocrite.
To combat, Philly's rising murder rate, Lynne Abraham has decided to arrest a 71 year old for murder. 41 years after he shot a cop, for which he served 20 years. The coroner claims the infection he succumbed to were directly related to injuries sustained 41 years ago. Perhaps it was. Officer Barclay was 64 years and was forced to live life in a wheel chair. 41 years in a wheel chair sounds like a worse punishment than the 20 years that William J. Barnes served. But are we that unforgiving in a society, to enact revenge 41 years later for a crime who's punishment was already served.
Have we lost that compassion??? Case in point, former Presidential candidate, Alabama governor and renowned segregationist (read: racist), George Wallace was shot in 1972 and left paralyzed. But upon the announcement that the shooter would be paroled, it was revealed that Wallace himself, forgave that gentleman.
Wallace's family forgave him as well:
I've forgiven Arthur Bremer and my family has, so I think God's law has been adhered to, and we're comfortable with that," Wallace told the newspaper. "But having said that, I don't believe that given the suffering my father endured all those years from the gunshots and the constant paralysis — I don't think Arthur Bremer's incarceration comes close to that type of suffering."
Okay... it seems that my opinion on these cases seem hypocritical, here's what I wrote two weeks ago:
They are going to let this guy free? I mean don't get me wrong, Wallace was a racist prick. But this guy should be in jail for life. Or at the very least, let Wallace' family cut his achilles tendon and force him to get around in a wheel chair for the rest of his life.
In the words of the great Gilda Radner, Nevermind.In the meantime, the crack staff here at HammRadio has received a letter from Barclay:
Dear fellas, I can't believe how fast things move on the outside. I saw an automobile once when I was a kid but now they're everywhere. The world went and got itself in a big damn hurry. The parole board got me into this halfway house called "The Brewer". And a job bagging groceries at the Foodway. It's hard work and I try to keep up but my hands hurt most of the time. I don't think the store manager likes me very much. Sometimes after work I go to the park and feed the birds. I keep thinking Jake might just show up and say hello. But he never does. I hope wherever he is he's okay and makin' new friends. I have trouble sleepin' at night. I have bad dreams like I'm falling. I wake up scared. Sometimes it takes me a while to remember where I am. Maybe I should get me a gun, an, an rob the Foodway so they'd send me home. I could shoot the manager while I was at it, sort of like a bonus. I guess I'm too old for that sort of nonsense anymore. I don't like it here. I'm tired of being afraid all the time. I've decided not to stay. I doubt they'll kick up any fuss. Not for an old crook like me
HammRadio: Are you Rehabilitated?
Red: Rehabilitated? Well, Now let me see. You know, I don't have any idea what that means.
HammRadio: Well, it means that you're ready to rejoin society...
Red: I know what *you* think it means, sonny. To me it's just a made up word. A politician's word, so young fellas like yourself can wear a suit and a tie, and have a job. What do you really want to know? Am I sorry for what I did?
HammRadio: Well, are you?
Red: There's not a day goes by I don't feel regret. Not because I'm in here, or because you think I should. I look back on the way I was then: a young, stupid kid who committed that terrible crime. I want to talk to him. I want to try and talk some sense to him, tell him the way things are. But I can't. That kid's long gone and this old man is all that's left. I got to live with that. Rehabilitated? It's just a bullshit word. So you go on and stamp your form, sonny, and stop wasting my time. Because to tell you the truth, I don't give a shit.
HammRadio: Any last thoughts???
Red: There is a harsh truth to face. No way I'm gonna make it on the outside. All I do anymore is think of ways to break my parole. Terrible thing, to live in fear. Brooks Hatlen knew it. Knew it all too well. All I want is to be back where things make sense. Where I won't have to be afraid all the time. Only one thing stops me. A promise I made to Andy.
Not entirely sure what the hell Red is trying to say here. But we hope the store manager doesn't give him shit when he asks to go to the restroom.
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My Daily Spot
I keep forgetting to put this new feature on the site as a blogroll somewhere. But I wanted to give you a peak into some of the links I check out daily/regulary. I call it "My Daily Spot".
My Daily Spot
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