Murder, as defined under United States common criminal law is, “the killing of another human being with malice aforethought.” Under the Model Penal Code (MPC), first-degree homicide is defined as “the intentional murder of another human being that is willful and premeditated with malice aforethought.”
For a prosecutor to successfully convict a criminal under either of these, the prosecutor must prove to twelve Americans that the accused not only committed the act of murder, but that the accused intended to kill the victim.
Both sides of this equation for conviction are equally important. Proving intent, however, is far more difficult. Someone is clearly dead in this situation; evidence leads to the conclusion the accused committed it—but did they intend to do so? That is the question that must be answered conclusively because the accused are innocent until proven guilty.
However, that is the procedure and conduct which we only find in a court of law. The court of public opinion has no such requirements. Today’s society has created a court of public opinion in which people find themselves guilty until proven innocent. But there is never a trial. And the punishments are swift, harsh, and detrimental. If only we treated people convicted of murder or first-degree homicide the same. Yet, we see the media recently decrying the former Trump Administration’s executions and lionizing heinous criminals as heroes deserving of mercy.
Something is gravely wrong in parts of today’s society where someone who, for example, raped and killed his own child-aged daughter, is given more respect in the media, and a trial, than someone who said something some people disagree with. Or lacks total context. Or offended someone, someone who is totally and completely unrelated to the situation. What are we going to do to fix it?
With the recent spate lately of cancel culture coming for people such as Morgan Wallen. Or a liberal professor who, when responding to a question posed by a student, asked about what racial slur was used in the situation by merely mentioning what racial slur he thought was so to better understand, and many, many others we have seen over the years, when is the time going to come where we reassess how better to respond to such situations? The punishments laid down by the court of public opinion do not fit the crimes; some should not be even considered criminal.
Now seems like a good time, for instance, seeing as this new administration rode hard on unifying the country. Though, unity would require mercy, especially for mistakes.
But Democrats and the radical left do not want unity, they want submission to the secular religion of leftism, and the political and economic submission to progressivism. Which is a fancy way to spell communism, judging from the facts of their policies and calling a spade a spade. The entire M.O. of the radical left is to cause division under the guise of diversity. To call for unity and then to cause division is to operate in a state of cognitive dissonance.
We were raised as children that sticks and stones may break our bones, but words will never hurt us. Yet, the cancel culture’s main criminal prosecution tactics are to cancel people for words that they have said—most of the time lacking any context and sometimes well passed any statute of limitations. People change, what they said ten years ago may not be who they are today. Regardless, the cancel mobs never look for malicious or aggravated intent from the accused. The act alone is sufficient for the accused to be punished.
This is not to say there are no instances in which words do not matter and victims of them should not seek retribution—we do have defamation laws. But call me crazy, intent and context both matter and are vitally important to every situation. What happens to a society when people have to constantly think about Big Brother over their shoulder who is judge, jury, and executioner, and the accused is never afforded the opportunity or ability to put up a defense for their acquittal?
It seems as a society playing the victim is not only rewarded, but victims seek to be victimized—and seek punishment for something to which they are not a party. And, most of the time, victimized over the most trivial things when we bring in the context and facts of life. Some victims going so far to be victimized, too, that when facts come to light, were “victimized” by things not properly portrayed, to begin with (looking at you Alexandria Ocasio Smollet). Though the punishment has already been served on the accused and there are no reparations.
We, as a society, should not only no longer accept the way things are conducted, but also be actionable for the change and support the defense of others who deserve it. That which is elevated or given importance to is given power, so if we no longer allow its relevance, the power ceases to exist. That is, if we stop bowing to the SJW cancel mob, it loses its power.
Words or thoughts are only empty promises when there is no action that follows from them. What is worse are words or thoughts that are, repeatedly, followed by inconsistent actions. Like, empty calls for unity, diversity, or equality. At some point, it may no longer be cognitive dissonance or decline, it may just be lying—or perjury, in the legal context. Or, unfortunately, just being a normal beltway politician, like the current context in Washington and the White House.