Harry Reid Wants To Screw Over Zimmermman, Vows Justice Will Be Undone and Mob Rule Will Reign

On Sunday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) asked for the Justice Department to prosecute George Zimmerman, who was acquitted Saturday night in the killing of Trayvon Martin. “I think the Justice Department is going to take a look at this,” Reid told NBC’s Meet the Press. “This isn’t over with and I think that’s good. That’s our system, it’s gotten better, not worse.”

Reid did acknowledge the verdict, stating, “I am a trial lawyer and have [brought] over 100 cases to a jury. I don’t always agree with what the jury does but that’s the system and I support the system.”

Justice: Proposed Australian Law Would Make Muslim Women Lift Veil

Muslim women would have to remove veils and show their faces to police on request or risk a prison sentence under proposed new laws in Australia’s most populous state that have drawn criticism as culturally insensitive.

A vigorous debate that the proposal has triggered reflects the cultural clashes being ignited by the growing influx of Muslim immigrants and the unease that visible symbols of Islam are causing in predominantly white Christian Australia since 1973 when the government relaxed its immigration policy.

Under the law proposed by the government of New South Wales, which includes Sydney, a woman who defies police by refusing to remove her face veil could be sentenced to a year in prison and fined $5,900.

The bill — to be voted on by the state parliament in August — has been condemned by civil libertarians and many Muslims as an overreaction to a traffic offense case involving a Muslim woman driver in a “niqab,” or a veil that reveals only the eyes.

The government says the law would require motorists and criminal suspects to remove any head coverings so that police can identify them.

Critics say the bill smacks of anti-Muslim bias given how few women in Australia wear burqas. In a population of 23 million, only about 400,000 Australians are Muslim. Community advocates estimate that fewer than 2,000 women wear face veils, and it is likely that even a smaller percentage drives.

“It does seem to be very heavy handed, and there doesn’t seem to be a need,” said Australian Council for Civil Liberties spokesman David Bernie. “It shows some cultural insensitivity.”

Read more here.

YouTube Justice: Video helps hold Police Accountable/Maryland Story

Screen capture from YouTube video of motorcyclist Anthony Graber's arrest.

By THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Police in Maryland are in a tiff over an unflattering YouTube video, and prosecutors are working overtime to suppress it. Harford County prosecutors have filed felony charges against 25-year-old motorcyclist Anthony Graber, who taped a traffic stop in March and shared it on the popular website.

Mr. Graber was stopped by police after he made a high-speed trip down Interstate 95 with a video camera mounted on his helmet. Had the officers involved issued a simple speeding ticket and provided a stern roadside counseling session, the matter would have ended there. As seen by nearly a quarter-million viewers online, however, Maryland State Trooper Joseph David Uhler had other ideas. Clad in jeans, sneakers and a grey pullover, Trooper Uhler jumped out of his unmarked Chevy, gun drawn, yelling for Mr. Graber to “get off the motorcycle” – almost forgetting to identify himself as a peace officer. While drawing a deadly weapon over a minor traffic infraction may seem a bit extreme, Trooper Uhler kept it pointed at the ground with his finger off the trigger. The decision was made in the heat of the moment.

The truly outrageous conduct happened days later, after Trooper Uhler was “made aware” of the YouTube video and the negative comments from the public. State police responded with a dawn raid on Mr. Graber’s home, confiscating all computers, hard drives and video equipment from the residence. Mr. Graber was charged with three counts of felony wiretapping because he had failed to obtain permission to tape his own arrest.

Maryland’s wiretapping statute, intended to protect telephone conversations from eavesdroppers, requires consent from all parties to a private conversation. For the law to apply to a traffic stop, the officer working on a public highway would have to assert that he had an “expectation of privacy.” That would be a rather absurd position to hold in a state that uses speed cameras on its interstate highways to record and ticket passing motorists without their permission.

Mr. Graber is being represented by a legal team assembled by the Maryland branch of the American Civil Liberties Union. In an interview with The Washington Times, staff attorney David Rocah expressed concern over the implications of the case. “To use a statute designed to protect people’s privacy – including significantly their privacy from government intrusion – as a sword to suppress the truth about official behavior is really turning the statute on its head.”

The sword in question is particularly heavy in this case, as Mr. Graber faces up to 16 years in jail. Prosecutors went out of their way to include a charge based on an obscure 2006 law imposing sanctions on anyone who commits a crime with the intent to film it. The wiretap counts include a charge for the possession and use of a “surreptitious” wiretap device – although it is unclear how a large camera mounted on top of a helmet could be considered hidden.

While Mr. Graber is fortunate to have pro-bono legal assistance, it is troubling that police and prosecutors have the ability to lob such serious charges against citizens for exposing questionable official conduct to public scrutiny. The legislature should strip prosecutors of this authority by clarifying that the public has the right to use video to hold public servants accountable for their official conduct.

What law does Supreme Court pick love?

By: Cal Thomas
Examiner Columnist

We are told by no less than President Obama and supporters of his nominee to the Supreme Court, Elena, Kagan, that she “loves the law.”

I love my cat, but what does loving the law mean for the court, for the law and for the public?

What is the law? Is it a game played by insiders who went to Harvard (or Yale) law schools and the intellectual equivalent of theological debates over how many angels can dance on the head of a pin? Or is it something else, and if something else, what?

The classical view of law is that it is meant to restrain lawbreakers. But in order to define a lawbreaker, one must have a standard for law so that people know it when they break it.

The modern (“progressive” as Kagan has been called) view of law is that it is to serve the political ends of those in power. This is why we hear so much talk about Kagan being in touch with “average,” or “regular” people, as opposed to above and below average and “irregular” people I suppose.

The classic view of law is something quite different. Expressed by the English jurist William Blackstone — who, if he is studied at all at Harvard and Yale, is most likely treated as a relic with nothing to say to us moderns — is that the law began in the mind of a higher authority.

Blackstone expressed it this way: “No enactment of man can be considered law unless it conforms to the law of God.”

Blackstone’s philosophy was not insular, but served a larger purpose. As he expressed it, a law rooted in the ultimate Lawgiver, means, “The law, which restrains a man from doing mischief to his fellow citizens, though it diminishes the natural, increases the civil liberty of mankind.”

In other words, if the law is a kind of judicial floating crap game, no one can say at any given moment where the “game” is being played or what the outcome might be. But law that is fixed and conforms people to a recognized standard promotes the general welfare — as opposed to political interests — and even increases civil liberties.

That’s the kind of law I want and the kind of law the public should desire if it fully understood what is at stake in these debates about the Supreme Court. But Kagan appears not to embrace this type of law.

Neither is it how the progressive Obama views the law. The president believes the law should serve his political goals.

In the pursuit of those goals, the president has selected someone from a legal cocoon. Sen. Patrick Leahy, the Vermont Democrat who chairs the Judiciary Committee, has praised Kagan’s qualifications and “real-life experience” outside the courtroom. Vice President Biden calls her “Main Street.”

In fact, her experience, as noted by the Politico Web site, “draws from a world whose signposts are distant from most Americans: Manhattan’s Upper West Side, Princeton University, Harvard Law School and the upper reaches of the Democratic legal establishment.”

One of the several talking points about Kagan is that she is a “moderate liberal.” In fact, Ron Klain, Biden’s chief of staff, has called Kagan a “legal progressive.” That seems about right because in college she lamented the decline of the socialist movement.

If she is asked about that at her confirmation hearings, expect her to say she has “matured” since her days as a student. The question should be: “But have you converted from your embrace of socialism and on what basis? A love for capitalism and the Constitution?”

Democrats have the votes in the Senate to confirm her, but Republicans ought to use the process to further expose where this progressive president wants to take us: away from true law, William Blackstone and our nation’s founders or toward the remaking of America in his image?

Should this be an issue in the November election? Indeed, it should.

Examiner Columnist Cal Thomas is nationally syndicated by Tribune Media.

Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columns/What-law-does-Supreme-Court-pick-love_-93588404.html#ixzz0nlQIP2na