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Grand juries are rubber stamps
December 3rd, 2014 by Ken Hagler

Protests in US over choke­hold death case. Grand jury declines to indict white police­man who killed black man in July by wrap­ping his arm around vic­tim’s neck. [Al Jazeera Eng­lish (AJE)]

This com­plete­ly unsur­pris­ing event fol­lows close­ly on the equal­ly unsur­pris­ing lack of indict­ment of the cop in Fer­gu­son. From the reac­tion to both events, it’s pret­ty obvi­ous that most peo­ple have no idea what a grand jury does. To put it sim­ply, a grand jury does exact­ly what the pros­e­cu­tor tells it to do. This has led to a fair­ly well known say­ing that a grand jury would indict a ham sand­wich. The Sim­ple Jus­tice blog address­es the Fer­gu­son case in a post titled The Fer­gu­son Lie.

The cops and their apol­o­gists (what L. Neil Smith called “cop suck­ers”) are cer­tain­ly hap­py, but they should­n’t be. As John F. Kennedy said, “Those who make peace­ful rev­o­lu­tion impos­si­ble will make vio­lent rev­o­lu­tion inevitable.” The gov­ern­ment has just giv­en the rest of us two very clear illus­tra­tions of the impos­si­bil­i­ty of peace­ful rev­o­lu­tion.


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