The answer is simple: Maybe. It depends. Like everything else I write about. It depends on evidence, and a careful analysis of any problems with that evidence.
The bottom line is that rarely, if ever, is truth absolute.
Take the latest feud over something that seems so basic: Did more people attend Trump’s Inauguration than Obama’s?
This topic has been on my mind for months now, for obvious reasons.
Apparently Matt Lauer brought it to the forefront with his lame “interviews” of Trump and Clinton. I wouldn’t know. I can’t bear to watch this stuff any more.
I say “interview” in quotes because nobody who does what I do for a living is able to take what these clowns pretend to do seriously. They don’t “interview” anyone. They simply invite them to spew sound bites: in Clinton’s case, canned rehearsed pre-packaged focus group approved sound bites; in Trump’s case, more off-the-cuff riffs that he obviously literally makes up as he goes along.
As usual, I have no idea. But I can guess.
Here are some of the rather sketchy “facts” that have emerged so far:
Ryan Lochte was out with some of his other superstar swim team members for a night on the town after completing his grueling week in the water, winning medals and flashing his winning smile all over TV’s around the world. Not to mention the years and years of hard core constant exhausting training he went through to get there in the first place. Now he was finished… for now. Can anyone find it horrible or surprising that he might be out blowing off some steam with his teammates?
False Rape Accusations
Why on earth would a woman possibly lie about being raped? That was a valid question that was raised in comments to my last post. I could wax poetic about the sacred presumption of innocence, proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and the right to have a unanimous jury decide guilt or innocence. But I won’t. It would fall on deaf ears.
The fact is that rape accusations are such that they are basically presumed to be accurate by the vast majority of the public in virtually every case. That’s partly because people can’t understand why women would make this stuff up only to then be put through the wringer of a criminal prosecution and all that that entails.
Posted in Art of Law
Even criminal defense attorneys, like me, need to be reminded occasionally about the presumption of innocence.
I read a piece recently in Seattle’s “Stranger” about Matt Hickey (no joke, that’s his name), a well known techie who was being accused of sexually assaulting several women. I confess. After reading it I was pretty convinced that he must be guilty of rape. I’m not on his jury and not his lawyer, so I am free to think (and say) whatever I want.
But, then, I began to reflect on similar cases I have worked on as a criminal defense lawyer.
OK, this time it’s personal. It hasn’t been, lately; I’ve been watching the recent carnage in a sort of state of shock. It seems surreal, as if it can’t really be happening. Not part of my world. Too horrible. And sad. And depressing.
Promenade des AnglaisSo, sometimes it’s just easier to distance yourself and hope it goes away; only it won’t. I knew that last Thursday night when I turned on my TV.
I want to begin by thanking Donald Trump’s campaign manager. Just when I was wondering what new legal issues were floating around that were relevant to criminal law, there it was. Assault! Campaign Aides Gone Wild! Or not…
Which is what this is going to be about:
What, exactly, happened in that video that is all over TV news shows this week, showing some sort of physical altercation between Trump’s campaign manager and a reporter?
You know that feeling you get when something seems very familiar to you but you know it isn’t?
I got that recently when I was listening to one of the Presidential candidates wax poetic about every little detail concerning their poll numbers, on and on ad nauseam. I’m not even sure who it was (other than it wasn’t Kasich – for obvious reasons). Listening to them, I got this knot in my gut that this was somehow an intimately personal experience I had once had. But I couldn’t see how. I am a lawyer, not a politician.
There was that one time I ran for election myself. But it couldn’t be that… I am pretty sure Gallup wasn’t running any major polls to monitor the Island County Superior Court Judge job at the time. No, it was hard enough just reminding people to remember to vote in the primary when there was basically no press coverage.
Then it hit me.
Politicians and Criminal Defense lawyers are very much alike.