The Slow Grind

seale3.jpgThere’s an old saying that goes something like this: The wheels of justice grind slow, but they do grind. I’ve never been too sure about the validity of that statement, and have often felt that “the wheels of justice grind slow, when they grind at all,” was a more appropriate philosophy. But in the case of Charles Moore and Henry Dee, the wheels of justice did in fact grind slow—taking 43 years to do their job—but they did grind. And now, if justice truly has managed to balance itself out for Moore and Dee, 72 year-old James Ford Seale will spend the rest of his life in prison for the murder of these two young men.

In 1964, Moore and Dee, both 19 years-old (and black), were abducted and killed in Mississippi. Seale, an alleged member of the Ku Klux Klan was charged with the killings, but the charges were later dropped. It should comes as no surprise that the local law enforcement that dropped the charges against Seale were also involved in the Klan. And while there is no doubt that Seale acted with others, and some of them will never get any taste of justice in this mortal existence, at least one man will be made to pay for his crimes.

By and large I do believe in the concept of justice, though I seldom see an honest, balanced practice of it here in the United States. While it might seem ridiculous comparing the long-delayed conviction of James Ford Seale to say…I don’t know…someone like Lindsay Lohan, both serve as examples of how the justice system falls short.

For those of you who mange to go grocery shopping and avoid the insidious headlines that pass for “news” in this society, you might be surprised to hear that Lindsay Lohan has been in trouble with the law. The end result of Lohan’s brushes with the law was a one-day jail sentence. That’s right, one whole day! This was after two arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol and possession of cocaine.

In the world I come from (where black men are shot and killed by the police because their cell phones are mistaken for guns), a one-day jail sentence for two DUIs and holding ‘caine is bullshit. If me or my cousins or any of my friends were ever pulled over while driving drunk, and holding some cocaine—or more likely crack, ‘cause that’s what we Negroes prefer—we’d be in jail for the maximum amount of time the law allows. And then I would be forced to shank motherfuckers in the shower, and fuck other guys in the ass; because in prison, either you do the fucking, or you get fucked. So, there I would be, pumping iron on the yard, contemplating converting to Islam, and buggering other guys in the ass while pretending it was really Lindsay Lohan’s backdoor that I was banging, as she’s running around with cocaine in her pocket, driving drunk, and making shitty movies.

And that’s what justice is in this country. Justice is me taking comfort in the fact that black people can be murdered for no reason other than the fact they are black, and that if anyone goes to jail for the killing it will only take 43 years. Justice is knowing that even though what Michael Vick did is fucked up, the media and the criminal justice system will crucify him far more viciously than they would a white football star. Justice is pampered white chicks repeatedly breaking the law and endangering the lives of others by driving drunk, but only getting the criminal justice equivalent to a “shame on you.” Justice is black people rejoicing when O.J. Simpson was found innocent (even though we all knew his ass was guilty), simply because we were happy one of ours finally “got away with it.” Justice is an evil dictator that we helped put in power being publicly executed, while another evil dictator claims “executive privilege” when members of his staff are questioned about possible wrongdoing.

Oh shit! Did I just say all of that? Yes, I did!

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