Everybody should be in prison!

TUESDAY, MARCH 11, 2014

On CNN, Hostin expounds: CNN is undergoing major revisions. Many new programs are being tried.

Last night, the channel began testing a new weekly show, “Making the Case.” It featured two high-profile CNN legal analysts, Mark Geragos and Sunny Hostin.

Late in the show, Hostin made a remarkable statement. Her statement helps us understand one of the forces shaping our national discourse.

The exchange began with Geragos explaining why he became a defense attorney. At the age of 12, he saw an 18-year-old sent to prison on a very minor charge:
GERAGOS (3/10/14): The case that got me to decide to become a criminal defense lawyer was when I was 12. My father was a prosecutor at that point.

HOSTIN: I like that.

GERAGOS: He got the, he got the—he saw the light and became a defense lawyer the following year. But I went to court with him when I was 12. And I actually watched him prosecute an 18-year-old kid, who was only six years older than I was, and send him to state prison for being in a room where marijuana was smoked. That had the most unbelievable effect on me.

HOSTIN: Why?
Uh-oh! Already, we were worried by the tone of Hostin’s reaction. Here’s what happened next:
GERAGOS (continuing directly): I mean, I said to my father, “How in the world can you put an 18-year-old kid right out of the box into state prison for being in a room where marijuana was smoked?” I just could not—

HOSTIN: I completely understand that.

GERAGOS: That has completely changed the career trajectory of me.
Warning! When Hostin said she understood, she didn’t mean what you think she meant. As the exchange continued, she displayed a remarkable reasoning process:
HOSTIN (continuing directly): Well, I completely understand that. If someone is in a room where they're packaging cocaine, or someone's in a room where they are trading guns and illegally trading guns, and they do nothing about it and are, in fact, really participating in it, I don't see a problem with that.

GERAGOS: This is exactly why prosecutors need like “Prosecutors Anonymous” or something. Because the idea that somehow you're going to go from being in a room where marijuana is smoked to international drug trafficking or gun trafficking—

HOSTIN: It's the same thing.

GERAGOS: I mean, it's not the same thing.

HOSTIN: It's the same thing. It's a crime.

GERAGOS: Ridiculous.

HOSTIN: I think your father was right. We'll be right back.
Wow, we thoughtfully said.

On air, Hostin is a very pleasant, very attractive person. She also thinks that everybody should be in prison.

Smoking marijuana, international gun smuggling? It’s all the same!

Cable has been full of such former prosecutors at least since the OJ days. During the abduction of Elizabeth Smart, the worst of them all, Nancy Grace, got Richard Ricci thrown into prison, where he died.

As it turned out, Ricci had nothing to do with the crime, but Grace just knew he had done it. She screamed and yelled, and he got jailed on some minor outstanding warrant.

A medical condition took over from there. Eventually, on Larry King Live, Geragos savaged Grace about what she had done, and she pretty much lied.

We were especially struck by Hostin’s performance because of the role she played in the George Zimmerman trial. From early in the case, she played a leading role in the invention of false information which helped whip up feeling against Zimmerman.

Set aside what you think about Zimmerman. Think about Hostin now.

We’re so old that we can recall when it was considered a very bad thing to invent false facts about people accused of major crimes. Remember when everyone agreed that they shouldn’t have made up those bogus claims against Tom Robinson? In that famous novel?

We do remember that!

Right from the start, a string of bogus facts were invented about the killing of Trayvon Martin. Last night, we got a look at the kind of thinking to which the liberal world surrendered in that tragic, unfortunate case.

Temperamentally, Hostin seems like a very nice person. For years, she prosecuted cases involving the sexual abuse of children.

Judging from what we’ve seen on cable, people’s perspectives may get warped if they spend too many years chasing too many horrible crimes. We thought that exchange should be posted.

Final question: Where do you think that 18-year-old is today?

(Geragos was born in 1957. The incident would have occurred in 1969.)

72 comments:

  1. Wow. Another female target for Bob on a show that few will watch.

    "Think about Hostin now."

    Would you mind if I didn't waste too much of my life doing that?

    Bob, far better "musings" might be the continued descent of the once very proud and very mighty CNN into the realm of infotainment and ginned-up televised shout-show conflict in a desperate attempt to attract eyeballs.

    But I'm sure you'd find a way to pin that on Rachel Maddow.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What, women should get a free pass on stuff?

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    2. Why shouldn't Bob target females?

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  2. Hostin is hostin on CNN after the heinous hooey she hoisted in the MArtin/Zimmerman matter?

    Your Howler doesn't get results.

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  3. This may seem like a random criticism of a female CNN host but there is a connection between the tendency of underclass or inner city youth to be incarcerated at a disproportionately higher rate than other kids and a serious impact on their later lives. It is harder to get into college or get hired at a good job after having been in prison, so the harsh attitude embodied by this host, to the extent that it is reflected by our court system and especially juries, is bad for the life prospects of such kids.

    Is it a good idea for these female hosts (who are attractive and thus both more entertaining and also more persuasive to viewers) to embody this kind of inability to distinguish between serious and petty infractions to the point that she seemingly doesn't care whether a life is being ruined by something that was arguably not the fault of this kid?

    My cousin was arrested because a friend she was giving a ride to happened to have marijuana in his backpack, without her being aware it was there. She was arrested for contributing to the delinquency of a minor because she was 21 and her friend was younger. Her middle class family was able to hire a good attorney and the charges were dismissed. Underclass teens are not usually able to have the same outcome.

    Women can get away with a get tough attitude without appearing brutal but the entertainment value comes from indulging vicariously in a vicious impulse that is perhaps motivated by something beyond the facts of the cases being presented. Sort of like enjoying seeing celebrities dunked in a reality game show or seeing people hurt in stunts on youtube. But these are real lives being affected and this kind of thing should be criticized, even on CNN (which is purportedly news) and when hosts are women.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How do you know your cousin was unaware of the marijuana in the boy's backpack?

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    2. I guess you'd have to know her to understand that.

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    3. What a bullshit charge. At least in Illinois, which would require knowingly "caus[ing], aid[ing], or encourag[ing]' the passenger to stow the weed. And proving that beyond a reasonable doubt.

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  4. Ah, the value of vicarious viciousness. It is what makes these hostess vixens more valuable to viewers, which is vexing to their unattractive male counterparts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, this is all a big joke, isn't it?

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    2. I could not disagree with you more.

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    3. Then stop treating this like it is a joke to you.

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    4. The joke was half of the commentary by 1:09

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  5. What kind of child abusing prosecutor/parent takes their kid to watch them try a teen for pot smoking?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Presumably the judge was in the courtroom when the child abuse took place. I wonder if the judge was arrested for child abuse.

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  6. Hostin shows more of the same reasoning that led her and those with similarly challenged intelligence to conclude Zimmerman was guilty of a crime.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes. People whose intelligence isn't challenged concluded it was perfectly appropriate for the armed Zimmerman to follow a teen walking to the home where he was staying and, in the heat of a confrontation that followed, shoot him dead.

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    2. Correct, intelligent people familiar with the facts do indeed conclude that.

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    3. I wish everyone followed all teenagers walking alone at night. If teens knew armed strangers were walking behind them they might be less likely to leave home in the first place.

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    4. And it's not like teenagers don't have all day to beat up the homeless and the elderly.

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  7. We’re so old that we can recall when it was considered a very bad thing to invent false facts about people accused of major crimes. Remember when everyone agreed that they shouldn’t have made up those bogus claims against Tom Robinson? In that famous novel?

    Remember when the vigilante in that novel watched and saved the neighborhood and eventually eliminated a thug, and the townsfolk made up a cover story and we all cheered?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The left today would say Boo Radley should have been put behind bars for life for trolling his neighborhood "looking for a fight" and not minding his own business

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    2. Yeah! We always forget the part where Boo calls the cops on Dill then shoots him dead.

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    3. You don't remember when Dill attacked Boo and started beating his head into the sidewalk?

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    4. It's all coming back. Dill was 6'2" and sent to stay with relatives because he was kicked out of school for the third time that year, but not before he tried to illegally sell a gun.

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    5. Before or after he took up with Princess Radziwill?

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    6. Was Princess Radziwill into drank? I thought she just did crack.

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    7. And politicians and authors.

      Delete
  8. "Remember when everyone agreed that they shouldn’t have made up those bogus claims against Tom Robinson? In that famous novel?"

    No. We are not as old as you. We don't remember.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kids still read To Kill a Mockingbird in school.

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    2. Current school reading lists have nothing to do with whether many of us "remember when we all agreed" with Somerby.
      And if he remembers why does he make up bogus claims now?

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  9. I see that the mere mention of Zimmerman's name has brought back the Zimmerman Defense Team.

    Welcome home. Bob has missed you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It must really irk you that people disagree with you.

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    2. But you're totally fine with it.

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    3. I don't blame Somerby for Zimmerman's acquittal, as you seem to do.

      Delete
    4. Where did anyone blame Somerby for Zimmerman's acquittal?

      FYI, in case you really are that dense, Somerby didn't give a damn about George Zimmerman. He only used him as another occasion to beat up his targeted MSNBC "bad guys/gal" some more, just like he uses every issue under the sun.

      And it was very nice clickbait for him, as the Zimmerman Defense Team rushed in to tell us how thuggish it is for a black teenager to walk home from a convenience store.

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    5. And for a black teenager to smash the head of a white man legally walking in the same area into a sidewalk

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    6. That's certainly Zimmerman's story. You recited it well.

      Delete
  10. My friend Jeff said he was "radicalized" during the Free Speech Movement at Berkeley. So, he became a public defender. Jeff managed to get some of his guilty clients acquitted, a result that didn't make him feel good. After a few years, he switched and became a prosecutor.

    During Jeff's days as a PD, a client asked why he was being prosecuted, even though his friends were doing the same thing he did. Jeff's answer: "Because you got caught."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Insert your own snark here:
      :
      :
      :
      I'm too tired.

      Delete
    2. We have an adversarial justice system in which both accused and accusers provide the best possible case. Defense is about providing such a case regardless of the guilt or innocence of the person accused because that is how justice is best served. I cannot imagine your friend didn't know that.

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  11. The Martin facts are unchanged. He was stalked by a suspicious character who twice refused to identify himself or state his purpose...at the second encounter, the suspicious character, by his own admission, grabbed for his waist where he had a gun concealed. The victim reacted to defend himself as provided by law, but the killer was able to get the gun out and kill him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unfortunately for you, we all know about the four minutes you omitted from your narrative

      Delete
    2. You mean the four minutes in which the armed gunman did not return to his vehicle to await the police he had summoned? You know the police, don't you anonymous 9:40? The guys who always let the assholes get away?

      Yeah we know all about them.

      Delete
    3. Unfortunately for me? I don't live in Florida.

      I'm not reciting a "narrative." I'm responding to misstated "facts" from Unknown. Martin should have used his four minutes to go home. But he wasn't under any legal obligation to do so, just as Zimmerman wan't under any legal obligation to return to his car.

      Delete
  12. Nice interview with Mr. Zimmerman. He details his activism on behalf of a black man who was actually the victim of racism, activism that would put any Trayvon Martin apologist to shame. A solid guy. Glad he got out of his ordeal that night alive. http://www.myfloridalaw.com/georgezimmerman/

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  13. It's good to have an active fantasy life. It just gets in your way when you try to reason about the real world.

    Martin wasn't stalked; not under Florida law, and not in the vernacular. It's too bad you think people walking on public property are "suspicious," but they're still allowed to walk on public property. No one is has to identify himself to a private party or state his purpose for being where he's allowed to be. Z says he reached for a cell phone, which isn't illegal, even if he was carrying a gun, which wasn't illegal either. As it was concealed, M couldn't have known what Z was reaching for. All of this applied to Martin as well: he was in public where he had a right to be, without identifying himself of stating a purpose. He was on his cell phone, but if he hadn't been, he would have been within his rights to reach for it.

    Martin may have been defending himself, which the law allows, even unto striking the first blow. But the same law applies to Z.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All correct. The Martin was standing his ground too meme would be worth considering were it not for those blasted four minutes.

      Delete
    2. Yes indeed. The four minutes in which the armed killer- neighborhood watcher/night stalker did not return to his vehicle. Because, you know, these assholes. They always get away.

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    3. And Martin did not return to his home.

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    4. SYG isn't a "meme." It's part of Florida law, and it covered both men equally at the point they confronted each other. No one can say for sure what happened immediately after that.

      No doubt Martin should have taken his four minutes to get home. But SYG requires that you be where you're legally allowed to be, and both men were.

      Delete
    5. "No doubt Martin should have taken his four minutes to get home."

      How the hell can you say, "no doubt"? You weren't there and you don't have a clue let alone no doubt. If only the boy got his ass home and off Zimmerman's street he wouldn't have gotten himself shot.

      Delete
    6. He didn't have to go home. He had four minutes to do anything he wanted and he chose to physically attack the wrong person he stereotyped as a creepy ass cracker rapist.

      Delete
    7. mm, You're right. I should have said no reasonable doubt. Martin was close to the house where he was staying. There's no evidence that Zimmerman stood between him and safety. That's not to say he had any legal duty to do so, and contrary to Ignoramus @11:40, there's no evidence that he chose to attack Zimmerman. He may well have been within his legal rights to strike and even to strike first. No one except possibly Zimmerman knows.

      My conclusion is based solely on outcome.

      Delete
    8. It is quite clear to me that Zimmerman had no reasonable fear of death or great bodily harm and is therefore guilty of murder.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous troll @11:10P,

      Which, of course, is why Z was convicted.

      Oh, wait.

      Delete
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