Anyone who has not been living under a rock for the past week probably knows that the governor of Texas, Rick Perry, was recently indicted for coercion and official oppression.
We’ve talked a little about Texas’s Grand Juries and how they work, as far as I understand it. You can see that here: http://www.spmaftermath.com/2013/05/grand-jury-rigged.html
Perry’s indictment presents a unique opportunity. He is a Republican, and a law’n order, throw-the-book-at-'em one at that. His politics are about where mine were a few years ago, and his supporters are the type of conservative right-wingers that reflexively support law enforcement. They are facing a conundrum; it’s likely that they will see these charges as politically motivated, which means that the system has failed.
The challenge will be to illustrate that this is not an example of the system being abused; Perry’s indictment is simply how the system works.
The excellent legal blog Popehat summed it up best:
my fortunate clients are the most outraged at how they are treated by the criminal justice system, and most prone to seeing conspiracies and vendettas, because they are new to it — they have not questioned the premise that the system's goal is justice. My clients who have lived difficult lives in hard neighborhoods don't see a conspiracy; they recognize incompetence and brutal indifference and injustice as features, not bugs. "Justice system" is a label, not a description. The furnace on a steam locomotive bound for San Francisco does not have a goal of reaching San Francisco; the furnace just burns what you throw into it to move the train along.”