Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Tribune Finally Owns Up

As if we didn't know already. The Salt Lake Tribune has alternately sat on stories or not investigated them from the beginning. They're not the only ones. From about fall of last year, if you hadn't caught on to what was being said between the lines, you weren't reading. Now they just say it:
The Salt Lake Tribune - "We continue to have reservations about the raid on the FLDS Yearning for Zion Ranch in Texas in April 2008 that gave rise to this and other prosecutions. The appeal of the Jessop conviction may bring rulings by higher courts in Texas on whether the evidence from that raid, which was based on a bogus phone tip about a young woman in distress, was tainted by the false foundation for the state's searches and the breadth of the resulting seizures.

Procedural questions aside, however, we believe that justice was served by this prosecution, the conviction and the sentence."
And we, those of us who were outraged by this business, do not. You cannot in this country, separate the procedural from justice, and even relegating it to the bin of "procedural" shows a sort of snooty bias that causes me to grind my teeth a bit.

The bill of Rights is largely concerned with procedure. Our 4th Amendment is in fact nothing, if it is not about procedure.
"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."
By failing to do anything but step back, and NOT editorialize on the issue, and then in the final analysis issue a weak "We continue to have reservations," The Salt Lake Tribune openly declares that when it comes to personal freedom, they opt to subordinate it to what they evaluate as creepy:
"The whole notion of pressing young women into polygamous sexual unions with much older men is abhorrent, and any state which respects the rights of the young, the vulnerable and the brainwashed should prosecute it."
Thanks at least, for telling us that. The fact that no member of the community came forward to testify against Raymond, his "wife" included, who is an adult now, is of no importance to the Tribune. Their claim of abuse only holds legal, but not real water. Had their been real abuse, one of the women of YFZ would have broken ranks, but no one did. Not even to this day. Isn't Janet, Raymond's wife, able to say if she feels abused now? If in fact it is a date on a calender that makes a girl a helpless victim of sexual violence, doesn't the passing of another date on the calender make her capable of saying she wasn't?

Furthermore, if polygamy was the issue, as the Tribune clearly seems to think it is, along with the age of the polygamists involved, why was it that Texas didn't charge the FLDS with bigamy? Certainly there was probable cause to enter the Ranch and claim bigamy. All that evidence could have been collected and we'd be sitting right here, right now, with the same verdict.

And I'd have been reluctantly supportive of that verdict, because I too believe Raymond broke the law.

But we would have had a test case eventually going before the US Supreme Court on the issue of polygamy, and every State, Utah, Arizona and Texas is too cowardly to set that confrontation up. Instead they concocted a premise of abusive teaching and atmosphere and went into YFZ in a procedural way forbidden by our Constitution. That should be more important to the editorial board of the Tribune, but it's not.

You would think that a Free Press would have some allegiance to the idea of rights.
"In our view, there is no question that this is a crime of sexual violence which cannot be justified or explained away by reliance on the constitutional rights of religious freedom."
I guess the 1st Amendment only pertains to them.

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Xorphshire said...

"In our view, there is no question that this is a crime of sexual violence which cannot be justified or explained away by reliance on the constitutional rights of religious freedom."

I don't know who wrote that, and won't bother finding out, but that's the very type of mindset that's making me realize more and more that time's up for this type of judicial perversion.

"Violence"!? That's completely a product their imagination. That, along with many other aspects of the trial can never be proven. It was truly a "Guilty by Collective Imagination" trial.

The Pharisee said...

They are pandering to political rhetoric, as actual occurrence, it is equivocation on a mass scale.

They only reason Janet wasn't up there pleading for leniency is that she would have been crossed by the State on polygamy to build a case against Raymond down the road. Don't be surprise if they now drop that charge.

Of course if they convict him of Bigamy this cloud may eventually have a big silver lining.

kbp said...

"...convict [Raymond] of Bigamy this cloud may eventually have a big silver lining."

I do not recall the age of the wife involved in the bigamy charge Raymond is yet to face. Big factor in past cases.

The Pharisee said...

The Trib is admitting here that it was in the tank for conviction, and took the position that the 4th Amendment was merely procedural.

Well DUH. Justice is procedural, and that procedural problem was important enough to stick the PROCEDURE, in the CONSTITUTION.