Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Seeking to Eliminate Elliot Rodger's Due Process

By Douglas V. Gibbs

The general discussion following the killing spree of Elliot Rodger in Isla Vista near UC Santa Barbara is the same discussion we hear after each and every mass killing committed.  How could he have been stopped.  How could this have been prevented.  Did law enforcement properly do their job?  A number of the talking heads are saying that these shootings we have been seeing over the last few years are a sign that our mental health system is out of whack.

Was Elliot Rodger guilty while he was still innocent because of his behavior?

Hindsight is 20/20.  Were there signs that the unstable mind of Elliot Rodger was capable of mass murder? Sure.  But do you then arrest him for being loony before he commits a crime?  Should he have been taken into custody because he produced a crazy manifesto where he "said" he wanted to commit violence?

In a system that champions liberty, due process is an important component.  Due process is the basis upon which the Justice System of the United States is founded. Due Process is introduced in Article III of the United States Constitution, and reaffirmed in amendments IV through VIII. In the modern legal system, the essential elements of due process of law are notice, an opportunity to be heard, the right to defend in an orderly proceed, and an impartial judge. It is founded upon the basic principle that every man shall have his day in court, and the benefit of the general law which proceeds only upon notice and which hears and considers before judgement is rendered. In short, due process means fundamental fairness and substantial justice, and the basic understanding that all persons are innocent until proven guilty - no matter what the screaming mob may think or say.

If someone like Elliot Rodger is apprehended before committing an atrocity, because he or she exhibits behavior consistent with the government's definition of a potential mass killer, is such an action in line with our concept of due process?

As tragic as the deaths of those killed by mass murderers like Elliot Rodger is, and no matter how much any of us wish that he should and could have been stopped before it happened, at what point of taking into custody a person before they actually commit a crime do we decide that perhaps we have let go of too many freedoms in the name of security?

Taking a pre-crime position, apprehending individuals because they exhibit behaviors consistent with government definitions before they ever actually commit a crime, also opens up a Pandora's Box filled with a massive number of slippery slopes that outnumber the stars in the sky.  Giving law enforcement, or government, that kind of power opens up the opportunity for various definitions of all kinds to be established that would intrude on our freedoms in ways far beyond thoughtcrimes, and pre-crime.

An alarming outburst by liberal leftist Bob Beckel on Fox News that another host's criticisms of Obama were "treasonous," and Michelle Obama's words to a high school graduating class for the young people to monitor their parents for racist remarks, reveals to us how close we are to enabling the government, using their definitions, to take into custody people not only for their behaviors that are thought to possibly lead to violence, but behaviors and verbalities that dare to stand in opposition to the ruling elite's agenda.  Businesses are being successfully sued for daring to stand behind their religious beliefs regarding homosexuality, and Maine has fined an "anti-gay" group for not releasing their donor list to government using campaign finance laws as their weapon of choice . . . not long after the IRS went after conservative groups for daring to disagree with the liberal left establishment in government - in turn frightening off GOP donors. . . an action that may have had a significant impact on the 2012 Election.  If we begin arresting psychotic potential killers before they commit a crime, how long before being a conservative is defined as potentially dangerous, and those that dare to show any dissent are arrested for behavior not accepted by the government's long list of definitions?

I understand that we hurt every time some lunatic like Elliot Rodger goes on a mass killing spree, but if we are willing to toss aside our system of justice and due process "for the common good," and "peace and safety" when it comes to the determination of if someone with "mental problems" like Elliot Rodger should be detained before they have the opportunity to murder, it won't be long before dissent against the government is characterized as sedition, or is considered a mental illness. . . and then it won't be long before the establishment's Orwellian thought police begins arresting people for wrong thoughts, unacceptable behaviors, or because a neighbor turned them in because he overheard them say something he thought to be racist, or not approving of President Barack Obama.

-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary

Michelle Obama: Monitor Your Parents for Thoughtcrime - Daily Caller

The Five's Bob Beckel Accuses Guilfoyle of "Treasonous" Remark About Obama - YouTube

Does Mental Illness Explain Elliot Rodger's Murder Spree - Reason

Maine fines national anti-gay marriage group - Yahoo News

Obama's Labor Secretary Tweets Advice to Grads: Don't be an individual, Join the Collective - Young Conservatives

Did the White House Threaten a Reporter's Career Over Benghazi? - Personal Liberty

Greta Van Susteren's Career Threatened by Obama Administration - The US Patriot

Screamin' Howard Dean Says Republicans are Not American, Should Leave The Country - Independent Journal Review

1 comment:

JASmius said...

"Minority Report" without the clairvoyants.