Friday, June 20, 2003

Texas Justice

It is a stunning contrast between the speed in which action was taken against the Texas legislators who were essentially practicing civil disobedience and the time it has taken for the people in Tulia who were wrongly imprisoned to be let out.

It seems that so much of the republican's (though certainly not exclusively) goals in politics is to obtain and use the power that comes with political office. The "problems" that they work to solve tend to be more inconveniences for people who are perfectly well off, and have the time to complain about trivial matters. Often the "complaints" come from businesses that realize they can make more profits if they get rid of some government regulation. Of course in most instances, those regulations were put in place for a reason - most likely to protect the welfare of workers. But if these regulations become "too burdensome" (in other words effective, but costly), than they become the target of deregulation.

In the case of Tulia, an outrageous amount of injustice had been exposed, but the victims were not wealthy or powerful, so they had to wait for years to be released from jail.

The 16 people still imprisoned were among 46 Tulia residents arrested on felony drug charges four years ago after an absurd "deep undercover" investigation by a clownish officer named Tom Coleman. The men and women targeted by Mr. Coleman were characterized as major drug traffickers. But no drugs, guns or money were recovered when they were rounded up, publicly humiliated and paraded before the news media, which had been alerted in advance. Partway to Freedom

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