Hey now! That was some fracas yesterday! With me caught right in the middle.
Fireworks while waiting to visit my old buddy His Honor Greg Shatz. Rapt attention being paid to the Robert Grant murder trial. He had punched a Douglas Co. Sheriff on Monday. I expected more craziness and wasn’t at all disappointed. As I listened to testimony from those in charge of gathering forensic evidence, Grant exploded out of his seat and landed a couple of haymakers to the head of Doug Johnson, his own attorney. A scrum of sheriffs subduing him, jurors emptied, a real circus.
It was what came next though that bolstered my belief in the justice system. OWH reporter Todd Cooper was in the room and witnessed what went down. Prosecutors tried to call Cooper to the stand to testify. He refused. Citing First Amendment rights. Insisting that an attorney be made available before he considered any other words. Stood toe to toe, refusing to be brow beaten, badgered, or buggered. Stating with conviction that members of the press are protected. That they are to never become part of the story, only report it. The beligerent authority figure finally cowed, but pissed to be sure. Right makes Might. And me with the best seat in the house. When the room finally had cleared to just Cooper, Judge Shatz, and myself I let him know how much I appreciated him. Reflected on my own battles to exercise free speech- via this column- with those that tried to collar, harness, or quiet me for whatever in the hell reasons. We saw how that one played out too. One more time, Right makes Might.
Faith in the system doubly renewed when my own business came to matter. I’d held out slim hope that things would work out in my favor. Stuck to my Convictions though, willing to ride them all the way down and walk out with head held high. Letter of law on my side, gender not. I was a pioneer in the field of stay at home dads. My business a frightening, untested, unchartered milleu. But the scales are blindfolded, thank the gods. Huge stress taken from my shoulders. Justice sandwich served. Me right in the middle.