Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
So I've been struggling with writing this blog entry today because of the complete and utter RAGE I'm feeling this morning.
I'll catch those of you up who may not heard or been following this story. Cleveland Browns WR Dante Stallworth was convicted of DUI manslaugther yesterday after he plead guilty in a Florida court. At his sentencing hearing held yesterday the judge handed Stallworth a 30-day jail sentence set to begin immediately. Not for nothing, Stallworth also must serve 1,000 hours of community service, 2 years of house arrest & 8 years probation. But the question in all of this is...HOW CAN THIS BE?!
With the NFL having its share of legal woes among active players over the past couple of years a few scenarios come to mind when discussing the clear lop-sided judicial system we have in this country. (Ironically this is the very same judicial system I wish to serve in sometime soon.)
The most obvious situation being the recent release of Michael Vick from the near two year jail sentence he served after being convicted of dog fighting and animal cruelty. (Now let me preface this by saying that my argument in no means seeks to marginalize Vick's crime and the punishment handed to him for the acts he committed.) However, I am going to discuss the blatant double standard we're watching unfold before us. The news of one man going to jail for two years for the murder and cruelty towards animals over another man going to jail for murdering a human being while driving under the influence could not be more different. One has to question exactly what kind of message our justice system is sending not just to other Americans but to the rest of the world. Because the one I'm getting is that it's not ok to kill animals and while killing humans isn't either you won't get in nearly as much trouble for doing so. Here for great story on the comparisons.
I'm not going to rehash the Michael Vick charges and conviction facts. We all know what he did and how stupid he was for doing it. However, I'd like to point out some interesting tidbits about Dante Stallworth's incident. At the time of the accident Stallworth's blood alcohol level was .126 with Floria's legal limit .08. That's about a million times over the legal limit for those who want to sit there and do the math. Stallworth struck a pedestrian waiting to catch a bus on his way home from work who was not in the crosswalk at the time he was hit. (I like how every report and article I've read has thrown that in there as if it makes it any less Stallworth's fault and any more the victims.)
Both of these men are guilty of the crimes against them and should be punished to the fullest extent of the law, however Michael Vick having served almost two years in prison is out of a job and nearly broke and still faces a suspension from the NFL. And only time will tell what Stallworth will do once his 30 secs...err 30 days of jail time are complete. Fullest extend was not extended to Stallworth in this situation...which begs the question. What is a human life worth in America? And what does is a dogs? Definitely something to think about and in my case fume over until I get some semblance of an answer or explanation for it all.
Oh...and I'd like to honorably mention that, Plaxico Burress is currently facing a possible 3 1/2-15 year jail sentence for shooting himself in a Manhattan club while carrying an unlicensed gun in New York City. I also believe it's important to add that while the gun wasn't registered in New York it's actually registered in Florida and should be noted that Burress is both a legal resident of both Florida and New York. Burress' case has been postponed twice now because his attorneys and NY's state's attorney have failed to reach a plea agreement. Burress' incident occurred in November 2008 while Stallworth's occurred in March 2009.
This terrible story will inevitably be beaten up, killed, revived, beaten up and killed again by me on this blog because "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere" ~MLK, Jr. and THIS is clear and utter injustice in my eyes.
Thoughts, comments, questions or concerns are all welcome. Stay up folks!