Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty Tuesday of all counts against him in the death of George Floyd. It’s possible that the jurors believed that the evidence showed he is truly guilty of a pair of murder charges and one count of manslaughter. But what if they convicted him simply to avoid riots?
Unless the jurors agree to talk about their deliberations and share their inner thoughts, we’ll never know if they surrendered to the mob and convicted a man whose guilt they had doubts about. So we’re left to always wonder.
Fox News’ Greg Gutfeld was exactly right when he said Tuesday that if the verdict “didn’t go a certain way . . . there was going to be destruction.” California Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters whipped up as much rage as she possibly could, telling itching-to-riot “protesters” just prior to jury deliberations to “stay on the street” and “get more confrontational” if Chauvin was acquitted.
But the matches had been previously lighted, the gasoline ready to be poured. With or without her rant, the riot stage was set. Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, as well as the state Attorney General Keith Ellison, repeatedly declared him guilty of murder, says Power Line’s Scott Johnson, “in an atmosphere of mob justice.” Walz even called another news conference “to do it again” Monday “as the Chauvin jury retired to deliberate.”
What chance did this jury ever have of reaching a just decision?
Judge Peter Cahill, who presided over the Chauvin trial, was clearly concerned that the jury’s fear of violence and looting could have been a factor in the outcome. While he denied the defense’s motion when it asked for a mistrial based on Waters’ incendiary statements, he did say she “may have given you something on appeal that may result in this whole trial being overturned.”
The political left has been complaining about justice in this country for some time. In most cases, injustice in the minds of progressives, Democrats, and various agitators is any outcome they don’t like. Their notion of justice has no relationship at all with true justice.
The “justice” they seek is handed out on the streets, outside the law and inserted by threat into courtrooms. It is not only contra to American jurisprudence – which isn’t perfect but is the most righteous the world has ever seen – it is unfair, unmerciful, and primitive.
Tuesday’s verdict might well have been justice for Floyd. We want to believe the jury got it right and the system worked. But we can never be certain because the quite real threat of riots make it impossible to be sure. Unless the Chauvin jurors open up, there will always be that nagging sense that the mob won this one, and will capitalize on its success to eventually destroy true justice in America.
— Written by the I&I Editorial Board