Sunday, February 13, 2005
Lynne Stewart Conviction: A Travesty of Justice
The federal court conviction of Lynne Stewart happens at a time when a torture advocate who says that the Geneva Accords are "irrelevant"assumes the position of US Attorney General. It happens at a time when a man with questionable credentials from a suspect publication is permitted to enter a presidential press conference to ask "softball" questions. It happens at a time when a homophobic president permits an alleged homosexual matchmaker to have in his posession information that can expose an undercover operative. It happens at a time when Martha Stewart is behind bars but Ken Lay( who was referred to as "Kenny Boy", believed to be the modus operendi behind a scheme to swindle millions from the 401k plans of his own employees) walks free. It happens at a time when the U.S. president gives hundreds of thousands of dollars to right wing pundits to promote his policies. Lynne Stewart's crime seems to be doing her job, seeking information to help her client. In spite of the onerous act her client is accused of doing (bombing one of the World Trade Center buildings) he still deserves a fair trial. Why give a 65 year old woman a 35 year prison sentence for doing what she is supposed to do as a lawyer? ....if not for vengeance? Ms. Stewart makes her livliehood in this country and she has a rather large family in this country. Why would she jeopardize all this? Apparently Lynne Stewart (a lawyer who has had success in the past defending unpopular clients) "attempted" to communicate with someone in Egypt who was accused of another onerous crime on behalf of her client. This kangaroo court conviction is "guilt by association". According to this logic if you asked Charles Manson the time of day before he went on his murderous rampage you are an accesory and you are just as guilty as Charles Manson. The federal courts under Bush are becoming agents of the right which punish lawyers who defend political undesireables of the right and intimidate other lawyers who might consider defending such individuals. This is even more evidence of how "big brother" has intruded into our daily lives. The constitution is disregarded. This is an administration that continues to commit crimes while punishing others who are innocent.