It's my guess that many Americans are not in agreement with the decision by a parole board in Nevada to let O.J. Simpson out of prison after serving nine years for an armed robbery in Las Vegas. The case involved a hassle over possession of sports souvenirs and memorabilia that Simpson said belonged to him. It's also […]
It's my guess that many Americans are not in agreement with the decision by a parole board in Nevada to let O.J. Simpson out of prison after serving nine years for an armed robbery in Las Vegas. The case involved a hassle over possession of sports souvenirs and memorabilia that Simpson said belonged to him.
It's also my guess that details of the Vegas robbery don't really matter to most folks, whether they'll admit or not. What gets them is that O.J. beat the rap in the murder of his wife Nicole and her friend Ron Goldman 24 years ago.
If you're in your 30s or older, you probably can recall the long and highly dramatic trial of Simpson on murder charges. It was huge. Television ratings soared. Coffee-break conversations almost invariably touched upon the matter.
At the outset, it looked like an open-shut case against The Juice. But it got very complicated as the trial dragged on, and in the end, Simpson was acquitted — perhaps partly because of some crap about a shrunken glove that was too small for O.J.'s hand.
Anyway, O.J. walked. And they couldn't try him again even if they had wanted to.
After the trial, Simpson moved on and fell in with a bad crowd, which occasionally got him into trouble.
But let's focus on where we are now: Lots of Americans are upset with the parole of Simpson — mostly because they want him to pay for the murders. It's a human impulse. Murderers should pay for their crimes.
But a panel of jurors, selected by consensus of attorneys on both sides, ruled unanimously that Simpson was not guilty of the killings. So, that was that. What're you gonna do?
I should point out here that I, too, thought the jury was wrong. But they had seen and heard every bit of testimony through a months-long ordeal. I had not.
And, I didn't let the verdict in the murder case bother me as much as some people did.
But isn't it an injustice when a murderer gets away with it?
Well, it's probably a moral injustice, but it's not an injustice in any legal sense of the term. A truly terrible injustice would involve allowing public opinion to decide whether Simpson was guilty of the murders at issue — or whether his exemplary conduct in prison has earned him release.
The criminal justice system has its flaws, and it always has. But few, if any, seem to arise from granting O.J. Simpson parole after serving nine years as a model prisoner.
If the system became one of mob rule, as some people seem to favor, I'd move to Canada — even if Donald Trump had already been ousted from the White House.