When a Right Isn’t Right and Really Wrong.
Atlanta, a beautiful city and my adopted hometown, is at a tipping point. Only community leadership can save it.
Sometimes a legal right is just wrong, especially when death is involved.
The simplest example is the universal cross-walk, which indicates that a pedestrian has the right of way and a vehicle must yield to anyone walking there. But only a fool would walk out without looking both ways, acknowledging he might not be seen, and to exercise good judgment and due caution.
Being in a crosswalk won’t count for much, even if you had that right, if you’re dead.
And the right to abortion. Yes, it is a legal right, but it isn’t really right. I know it will never go away. I do believe moral clarity should exceed a legal right, but that is not how our society does things. We are a nation of laws. You won’t see pro-lifers setting fire to a fast food joint or tearing down a statue.
And last the instant case, Atlanta’s new ugliness. The law may say that the officers acted correctly, that Mr. Brooks resisted arrest and assaulted the officers, stole a taser and fired it, and those actions justified the notorious and fatal last five seconds…
But none of that makes it right. Brooks is dead after a DUI stop, and although his culpability was great, he shouldn’t be dead.
The subsequent ugliness and lawlessness will not end. If the officers are not maxed out on the charges and found guilty the whole city could burn. People have the right to assemble and protest but that doesn’t make the crazy product of it right. At all.
Because there’s a charge of felony murder, don’t expect a swift trial. It will get kicked down the road… after the 2020 election at a minimum.
Mayor Lance-Bottoms’s possible VP nod is now a fond memory, I suspect, but she still has a huge responsibility. Even in the light of a new hates crime bill there is an undercurrent of chaos and harrassment.
Madame Mayor… get in front of this.