Archive for February 20th, 2012

20
Feb
12

time to rise up

I was talking today with a reporter with one of the three newspapers that have been interfering with Jordan Brown’s Constitutional right to a speedy trial, and I want to repeat here what I told this reporter.

Today is the third anniversary of the crime and Jordan’s wrongful detention, and justice for Jordan is just as distant and beyond his (and our) reach as it was three long years ago… except that the idea of justice is today more tortured and abused, and we are more cynical and resigned to business-as-usual.

I think it is high time for all of us who have been following and involved in Jordan’s case to do some soul-searching and take action. This wrongful imprisonment of a child, the theft of his childhood, is the responsibility of more than just a few dishonest cops and prosecutors and politicians and second-rate lawyers. In varying degrees we have all allowed it to happen. Why have we not risen up en masse and demanded that the evidence, most of which exonerates Jordan, be examined? Why have we not demanded that this outrage against reason and honest justice immediately cease? We are all culpable.

The lawsuit being pursued by the three newspapers is threatening the freedoms of all Americans, not just the rights of a single child. The lawsuit might be good for the newspaper business, but it does not serve a higher good as long as the Constitutional rights of this child are being violated. These papers have no right to invoke First Amendment protections while they contribute to a denial of Jordan’s Sixth Amendment rights. If any of us start cherry-picking the Bill of Rights, if any of us start claiming that our Constitutional rights should preempt the Constitutional rights of others, then the whole ideal of freedom in America is doomed.

Who knows? Maybe the whole situation is already too far gone. A lot of people today are saying the Constitution is already null and void. But maybe we can still save it and get our freedoms back.

We are organizing a letter-writing campaign to the US Attorney General, the President, and to Pennsylvania Congressional members to ask for intervention in this case. The state of Pennsylvania has a statute called “Rule 600” that says a person should be tried for a crime within one year of being charged. The statutes regarding juveniles are even more strict: they maintain that a child must be tried within ten days of being charged. Jordan has already waited three years for a trial, and there is no certain end in sight.

Jordan is not doing well these days. He is fighting off depression and losing weight. He is losing ground with every day of prolonged imprisonment. Time is working against him. And remember: Jordan is innocent!

The real killer remains free in Lawrence County PA. He is a violent man, an alcoholic, and a threat to public safety.

Please visit http://www.facebook.com/events/212824898815204/ to learn how you can participate in this campaign to end this abuse of an innocent child and this threat to the freedoms of all.

Please act now. There is no more time to spare.

۞

Groove of the Day 

Listen to Bob Dylan performing “Chimes of Freedom”