Colin Powell sprinkles gasoline on racial fires of resentment

For reasons known only to himself, Colin Powell chose to heighten racial tensions with an ignorant comment. Evan McMurray of Mediaite reports:

On CBS' Face the Nation, former Secretary of State Colin Powell called the George Zimmerman verdict into question, alleging "questionable judgment on the part of the judicial system," but doubting the case would serve as a generative example for judicial reforms.

"I think that it will be seen as a questionable judgment on the part of the judicial system down there, but I don't know if it will have staying power," Powell said. "These cases come along, and they blaze across the midnight sky and then after a period of time, they're forgotten."

The notion that a judicial system makes judgments is incoherent.  Only juries render verdicts after sitting through presentations of evidence. But Powell ignores that and instead indicts the "judicial system." Did Powell follow every hour of the trial, and spend as many hours as the jurors did examining evidence? I seriously doubt it, and that makes his opinion on the justice of the verdict questionable.

But Powell is not rendering judgment on the verdict, so much as on the judicial system itself. I can only conclude that this reflects a notion widespread among African Americans that the entire judicial system is illegitimate because disproportionate numbers of blacks are convicted and serve time behind bars. It is a claim that cannot withstand scrutiny, but Powell gives no sign of any supporting information.

By delegitimizing the judicial system, Powell harms the American social order.  When respect for law declines, brute force tends to become the principal alternative mode of dispute resolution.

How far he has fallen since his years of honorable service in the United States Army. I used to respect him.

For reasons known only to himself, Colin Powell chose to heighten racial tensions with an ignorant comment. Evan McMurray of Mediaite reports:

On CBS' Face the Nation, former Secretary of State Colin Powell called the George Zimmerman verdict into question, alleging "questionable judgment on the part of the judicial system," but doubting the case would serve as a generative example for judicial reforms.

"I think that it will be seen as a questionable judgment on the part of the judicial system down there, but I don't know if it will have staying power," Powell said. "These cases come along, and they blaze across the midnight sky and then after a period of time, they're forgotten."

The notion that a judicial system makes judgments is incoherent.  Only juries render verdicts after sitting through presentations of evidence. But Powell ignores that and instead indicts the "judicial system." Did Powell follow every hour of the trial, and spend as many hours as the jurors did examining evidence? I seriously doubt it, and that makes his opinion on the justice of the verdict questionable.

But Powell is not rendering judgment on the verdict, so much as on the judicial system itself. I can only conclude that this reflects a notion widespread among African Americans that the entire judicial system is illegitimate because disproportionate numbers of blacks are convicted and serve time behind bars. It is a claim that cannot withstand scrutiny, but Powell gives no sign of any supporting information.

By delegitimizing the judicial system, Powell harms the American social order.  When respect for law declines, brute force tends to become the principal alternative mode of dispute resolution.

How far he has fallen since his years of honorable service in the United States Army. I used to respect him.

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