Circus for O.J.Why is the O.J. trial, a public lynching...

the Forum

January 27, 1995

Circus for O.J.

Why is the O.J. trial, a public lynching, being made a spectacular in the justice system of America?

Haven't there been other crimes where husbands have been accused of abuse and murder of their spouses?

During the Christmas holiday, there was a crime in Columbia where a Caucasian husband was alleged to have killed his Caucasian wife, shot her male friend and fled to Florida with their two sons. Why hasn't this case been paraded by the media?

Is this O.J. trial labeled the greatest murder trial in America because O.J. is black and affluent and the victims are white, one being his ex-wife?

There have been rich Caucasians who have committed such crimes before O.J.'s case, and they did not get all the hoopla that O.J. has gotten.

I am not saying O.J. is guilty or not guilty, but why is a circus being held at an African-American's murder trial?

When has there been a trial that was bigger than the Olympics? What judge's parents would want to be present in their son's courtroom? Why does Jackie Mason, the Hollywood comedian, have to join the press corps to express his acerbic perspective?

Profit-making is evident such as the selling of T-shirts, buttons and memorabilia.

Sometimes I wonder if this is a real trial or if they making a movie.

O.J.'s trial is not a true reflection of how the justice system is supposed to work in a democracy, but an example of outright, blatant, glaring racism.

Lola J. Massey


Zero sum game

Gov. Parris Glendening proposes to cut auto insurance rates for city residents.

While cuts might be achievable through tort reform and possibly other cost-reducing measures, I don't think that is what Mr. Glendening has in mind, if his campaign policy pronouncements are any clue to his future actions.

Mr. Glendening has reduced this issue to a zero sum proposition. If someone gets reduced rates, as would be the case in Baltimore City, someone else's rates would go up, as in the case of most of the jurisdictions in Maryland.

If he wants to get a handle on the exodus of middle-class families from the city, he might look to some doable changes which don't simply shift costs from one state resident to another.

No measure would do more than letting families choose the most appropriate education programs for their children, while granting them the same resources now dedicated to public school students.

The governor could answer the question of whether this is true by simply asking those who have moved from the city whether the freedom to choose a school other than the closest public school would have kept them in the city.

Mr. Glendening's campaign posture, which got him elected, is ++ not very encouraging in this regard.

But let us hope that he may see this new course as a way of benefiting not only city residents, but those in the entire state.

Herm Schmidt


Deviant logic

I don't usually expect much logic in religious arguments, but Dale Wonderly's Jan. 24 Other Voices article, "To help heal the nation, turn to prayer," was a masterpiece of deviant logic.

The article claims to embrace freedom of religion. Yet the writer would require us to acknowledge God in school prayer.

And since the writer agrees that there is no "generic supreme being applicable to all persuasions," who would the God we are required to worship be?

The article complains that "the religious privileges we have taken for granted are vanishing."

"We" in this case refers not to the entirety of American citizens, but the Christian majority which has enjoyed the privilege of forcing its beliefs down the throats of uninterested Jews, Buddhists, atheists and others through publicly funded sponsorship of religious displays.

I for one am glad that such privilege has been revoked.

Most tellingly, the kind of apocalyptic thinking that blames removing prayer from our schools for Vietnam and the Kennedy assassination is what labels the writer . . .

Would school prayer have killed more Viet Cong? Perhaps a self-righteous nation would have used the bomb on Vietnam, killing millions more, content in knowing that a just God would sort them out.

Remember that Hitler was convinced that God was on his side, too.

Let us not fall into that same trap.

JoAnne Schmitz


Arts buying

The Sun has extensively reported the facts and frustrations in the government's allocating funds to artists through the National Endowment for the Arts.

Taxpayers, artists and moralists have legitimate concerns about this function of our government.

The princes and prelates of the Renaissance seem to have avoided many of the problems currently agitating our country.

When a doge or pope or pirate commissioned an art work, that person took two crucial steps neglected by our federal government: 1) he indicated what he wanted -- a cathedral, statue of Venus, symphony or tombstone or a tapestry. 2) he received from the artist a sketch, or musical theme or model for approval or rejection.

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