You Call This Justice???

A few things caught my eye this week that had me shaking my head.  Justice.  A simple word we all understand, right?  And yet … our court systems these days seem to struggle with the meaning of the word.  But then, this is the Reign of Trump, where up is down, green is red, lies are truth, and ‘alternative facts’ rule the day.


Shane-Piche-1

Shane Piche

Shane Piche was a school bus driver in Watertown, New York, entrusted with hundreds of young lives every day.  Then one day last summer, Shane took one of the students who rode his bus home, plied her with alcohol and raped her.  Piche pleaded guilty to third-degree rape (what, there are degrees of rape???) and last Thursday came before Judge James McClusky of Jefferson County Supreme Court.

Shane PicheJudge McClusky lightly slapped Shane Piche’s wrist and basically told him not to do that again.  Shane will not spend a day … not a single day … paying for his heinous actions, not a single day in prison.  The judge ruled that since it was his first offense, aw shucks, let’s just let the boy go.  McClusky sentenced Shane to 10 years’ probation and he must register as a level 1 sex offender.  Level 1 is the least restrictive, meaning that Shane can move anywhere he wants and his address will not be made public.

Judge-McClusky

Judge McClusky

I’m not the only one who is angry, for the judge’s office has been bombarded with phone calls and a petition calling for his removal from the bench has garnered, as of this writing, 69,795 signatures, including my own.  On reaching 75,000 signatures, the petition will be presented to New York’s commission of judicial conduct, a panel with the power to discipline judges in the state.

Judge McClusky was elected to a 14-year term in 2011 that will not end until 2025.


Then there was Michael Wysolovski who met a 15-year-old girl in an online forum for people with anorexia.  She lived in North Carolina, he lived in Duluth, Georgia, and she told him she was unhappy at home and wished to come live with him.  In May 2016, after turning 16, she walked out and met him by the side of an interstate highway.

Michael Wysolovski

Michael Wysolovski

I will spare you the details of the abuses he heaped on this young girl, except to say he raped her, kept her in a dog cage, withheld food as punishment, and a variety of other cruelties for more than a year. When she tried to leave, he stopped her, even going so far as to install a floor-to-ceiling gate that prevented her leaving her room.  In 2017, the victim was able, once again through the anorexia forum, to contact a young woman, tell her of her plight, and send a picture of the view from her window.  On this information, police were able to locate her and Wysolovski’s home was raided and he was arrested in June 2017.

Wysolovski pleaded guilty last Thursday to first-degree cruelty to children caused by “excessive physical pain during sexual intercourse” and interstate interference with custody.  Gwinnett County Superior Court Judge Timothy Hamil did give Wysolovski a ten-year sentence, however after being given credit for 8 months served in the county jail, the remaining portion of the sentence was reduced to probation.  Like Shane Piche, he will serve not a single day in prison.


And last, we have the case of Doe v Mckesson in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  DeRay Mckesson is a high-profile, Baltimore-based Black Lives Matter organizer.  On July 9, 2016, Mckesson had organized a peaceful rally to protest the killing of Alton Sterling by police 4 days prior.  The protest was peaceful until somebody threw a small rock at police, slightly injuring an officer who is identified only as John Doe.  Mckesson and some 100 other protestors were arrested that day, but the officer sued Mckesson, claiming “loss of teeth, a jaw injury, a brain injury, a head injury, lost wages, ‘and other compensable losses.’”

DeRay Mckesson

DeRay Mckesson

In his 17-page complaint, John Doe alleged that “Mckesson did nothing to prevent the violence or to calm the crowd” and that he “incited the violence.”  His claim that Mckesson incited violence was based on a single-sentence statement that Mckesson had made to the New York Times:

“The police want protestors to be too afraid to protest.”

Not exactly ‘fighting words’, are they?  That was the core of John Doe’s argument.  In September 2017, a federal district judge rightfully threw out the case, stating that those words “do not advocate—or make any reference to—violence of any kind.”  Case closed, score one for justice.  But … not so fast …

John Doe filed an appeal, naturally.  The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals sat on the case from late 2017 until last week, when, out of the blue and without allowing oral argument, the panel reinstated the lawsuit.  The court said that “Mckesson breached his duty of reasonable care in the course of organizing and leading the Baton Rouge demonstration.”

The Fifth Circuit panel’s decision is clearly wrong under the law as it now stands. There can be no liability, civil or criminal, for speech that “incites” violence unless the defendant can be shown to have intentionally urged violence, knowing that listeners would likely respond immediately with violent behavior.

Ironic, isn’t it, that Mckesson is being held accountable for the actions of another over whom he could not reasonably be expected to have control, and yet just over a year later, in August 2017, white supremacists Jason Kessler and Richard Spencer organized the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, where Heather Heyer was murdered and many more seriously injured.  Nobody even suggested a lawsuit against Kessler and Spencer.

Jason Kessler (left) and Richard Spencer


Now, I want you to look at the pictures of these three men.  The first two were given a slap on the wrist, no prison time, for terrible crimes against young girls.  The third is being condemned for a minor incident caused by somebody else.  Now, look at the pictures of Jason Kessler and Richard Spencer.  Compare them to the picture of DeRay Mckesson.  I leave you to draw your own conclusions.

Note for Scott Lawlor:  All the men on this page are white with the exception of DeRay Mckesson, who is African-American.

44 thoughts on “You Call This Justice???

  1. I really can’t utter my feelings about this because there no words!! As a Mom of a daughter who was sexually assaulted my heart is in anguish for these girls!! I just am speechless at this injustice and the fact that this is happening now, in modern day America, not the stone ages!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m so sorry to hear about your daughter … words fail me. You’re right … this is an abomination and as I’ve said before, we are going backward in terms of civil rights in this country. I just finished writing a rant for my morning post along those lines. Sigh. There are many days that I do not recognize this nation.

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  2. Justice is but one of many things long been taken for granted as a given and now increasingly find it replaced by injustice. This is intolerable. “There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest.” – Elie Weisel. Thank-you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Quite so … we just always believed that the courts would ‘do the right thing’ and be non-partisan, not bigoted, etc. More and more we will be seeing this sort of thing, as Trump selects people from the far-right to sit on federal courts. Sigh. Good quote!

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  3. I guess all these white guys are atheists, since christians tell me we atheists have no morals and do whatever we want to whomever we want. The judges must also be atheists, allowing people to do what they want to whomever they please. The black dude, obviously not atheist, he has to stand trial for all the evils of the world. He took the time to follow the rules for a peaceful protest, and since someone got hurt he is the obvious wrongdoer. Someone has to pay for throwing that stone!
    (Above assumptions could be false facts! I could not find anything about what these people actually believed, but found lots about what christians believe, and my “facts” fit their beliefs. They are the most moral people in the world because their god tells them to be.)
    Don’t print this comment Jill. I would hate to break anyone’s bubble!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m leaving your comment here, for you said what was in your heart, or on your mind, and it is a valid opinion. If bubbles can so easily be burst, then they aren’t very sturdy to begin with, yes? 🙂

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      • True, but I am merely being sarcastic. Odds are that the two rapists, the guys from Charlottesville, and the two worthless judges are all christian, as well as the black dude. Atheists don’t act like the criminals, and atheist judges would make the rapists take responsibility for their crimes. Oh yeah, the white cop is surely a christian, how else did be suffer brain injury from a stone to the jaw?
        I’m sorry, Jill, but the events you came up with today are a sign of what is to come if Trump is not sent to jail, or at least impeached.The world has gone mad. Where are the sane people?

        Liked by 2 people

        • I know you were dripping with sarcasm, but you also made a point. The Christian community acts as if they are the only ones with consciences, when in fact many of them have none. Atheists have learned to treat every person fairly, honestly … but the “Christian community”, such as it is, cannot even see or understand it.

          Yes, I know this is only the beginning, and frankly, I have no hopes of Trump being impeached or otherwise removed from office, not even in next years’ elections. Clinton was impeached on far … FAR … lesser charges. That was then, though, and this is now.

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        • RG you are correct. It’s as if Christianity and some of the other religions have been the evil thing all along. A simple read of ancient and not so ancient history proves this beyond a shadow of a doubt.

          Religion was invented and divides man and perpetuates hatred, judging, killing and torture.

          It will get worse. To not treat people medically because of an obscene religious belief is a first step.

          Liked by 2 people

          • I think we can agree that there’s nothing wrong with religion as a a personal belief, an ideological tool to help ppl get thru life. It’s organized religion, ie the church which usurp all the power and wealth, herd their flock of mindless sheeple.
            Really it doesn’t matter if the power resides in the church, our gov’t, or any organization where humans gather together to consolidate power, b/c of human nature our need for control and power corrupts absolutely. All kind of atrocities committed by man in the name of… fill in the blank.
            There’s a song by RATM called Killing in the Name of, says it all….

            Liked by 1 person

          • Thanks, Mary, I have been trying to say that for years. You just summed it up in seconds. But few people will listen because they don’t want to listen, nor are they ready.
            It took me some years of trying to teach people to realize you cannot teach anyone anything. They have to come their learning to be themselves on their own, when they are ready to live it. We do our fellow humans a disservice when we try to teach them about life. No one taught me, and probably no one taught you. We just learn these things in the process of living our lives. Everyone should have the chance to learn on their own. That capability is inside each and every one of us.

            Liked by 2 people

            • True … you cannot force knowledge or ideas into a person’s head, but you can present those ideas and they will either pick them up, or leave them lying about. Yes, everyone should have the chance to learn on their own, but sadly so few take advantage of it. Far too many choose to be sheeples.

              Liked by 1 person

              • Yes, but one has to give them time to see, and think. This is why I believe in reincarnation, and spiritual evolution. one lifetime is not long enough. One hundred lifetimes are probably not long enough. Life is not a walk in the park. Yet we all progress, it is written into our DNA somehow. We evolve physically, and we evolve spiritually–but we do it on our own schedule. This is what I have seen.

                Liked by 1 person

                • So … do you think, then, that in our next lifetime we subconsciously bring with us the lessons learned in this lifetime? I’ve often wondered about that, and of course nobody knows for certain, but I’ve thought it would be handy not to have to start all over from scratch. However, I’m still debating … I’m pretty tired of humans at this point, and I’m thinking more seriously about returning as a wolf.

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                  • Yes, if we didn’t bring our learning back with us, what would be the point. Life is a process, but we all learn at our own speed. And sometimes, even though the learning is there, we don’t access it. Regress is a possibility, as is side-stepping. But, from my experience, once you learn something, you don’t lose it. Like if you come back as a wolf, forget your love of cats. You may have to eat them to survive…

                    Liked by 1 person

  4. His father or someone? Perhaps he’s in the right street gang? Must have some special relationship, there? What slays me, [bad choice of word] are the spikes in his ears. ..? What kind of statement is that?

    The judge seem to think? Or perhaps not? That it is okay for demons, to rape and pillage? That young girls and women; may go on through life knowing that these demons; are driving buses now? That these demons may use alcohol to satisfy base urges on unwilling participants? Yeah, guess that’s it? Cheers Jamie

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    • Who knows what the rationale? Yes, the spikes in his ears floored me, plus the fact that … if I’m going to appear in court, I would at least comb my hair, yes?

      It seems that these days justice is mainly for white males. At least here. I think Canada is likely better than this. Cheers!

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  5. The sad thing is, Jill, people “don’t want to get involved”. During this administration, crazy things are happening and many are becoming numb to wrong decisions in the courts. Also, POTUS has filled many courts with his choices. It will no doubt take years to right this situation. It’s too bad we can’t just scrub the effects off with some justice-type disinfectant. Now he’s saying the U.S. didn’t have “religious freedom” until he was elected. It just gets crazier. 😦 — Suzanne

    Liked by 2 people

    • You are right … people are becoming inured to these things, which is why I refuse to let them be kept silent, why I shout them from my little rooftop here. 😉 Hah! As a non-religious person, I can say that I’m tired of having religion forced upon me, such as the recent decision to allow healthcare workers to refuse treatment to transgender people. Grrrrrrrrrrrrr.

      Liked by 2 people

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