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Fear
By ammoniacal (Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 06:04:20 AM EST) (all tags)
Some days, it looks good. Links to educational stories and such. Today, however, I see this story. Above the fold is an assertion that Darren Wilson murdered Michael Brown. Below the fold, no one disputes the inaccurate statement. Wilson has yet to be indicted, much less found guilty of murder!


It's a ridiculous echo chamber over there and I won't give them one red cent.
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Han shot first by anonimouse (2.00 / 0) #1 Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 01:39:58 PM EST
It says shot not murdered (unless the story has been edited)

 ..although the rest of the above the fold commentary does lend weight towards the unlawfully filled with bullets aspect.

How many autopsies does it take to say he was shot several times?

Girls come and go but a mortgage is for 25 years -- JtL
Han was not indicted by the State of Missouri. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #2 Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 02:37:12 PM EST
Don't conflate the shot count with guilt. LE here are typically trained to fire until the threat is neutralized and that can take a lot of juice some days.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
Don't conflate legal judgments with guilt by lm (2.00 / 0) #3 Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 07:32:03 PM EST
Or lack thereof with innocence.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
I'm a Rule of Law Guy, so I do. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #4 Wed Aug 20, 2014 at 12:36:59 AM EST
To do otherwise is to invite chaos.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
So after the original OJ murder trial by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #5 Wed Aug 20, 2014 at 12:56:21 AM EST
Were you going around complaining "he's innocent, the Rule of Law says so" if people called him a murderer?
--
It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
[ Parent ]
I'm not Scottish, so no to 'innocent'. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #6 Wed Aug 20, 2014 at 05:00:55 AM EST
I did have to educate a few dullards over the concepts of "not guilty" and "beyond reasonable doubt" though.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
So you think the statement ... by lm (2.00 / 0) #7 Wed Aug 20, 2014 at 05:22:11 AM EST
.... "She got away with murder" is meaningless because it's only murder if someone is tried and convicted?

If so, that isn't being a 'rule of law' type, that's being a 'conflation of law and morality' type.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
I define murder (as do many others) by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #8 Thu Aug 21, 2014 at 04:06:47 AM EST
as the unlawful killing of another human being by a human being, so yes, I don't think you can judge an act as unlawful without a trial. "Getting away with murder" is a colloquial phrase and I don't give it much merit.

You can opine that it is, or is not, murder based upon elements of proof for the crime, but conviction is the end goal. Obviously, successful appeals may negate it.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
Do you feel the same about robbery? by lm (2.00 / 0) #9 Thu Aug 21, 2014 at 05:47:50 AM EST
If I've been mugged, No one has robbed me until someone has been convicted of such?

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
In a colloquial sense, sure. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #10 Thu Aug 21, 2014 at 08:40:08 PM EST
You can certainly say you've been mugged. "Mugging" may, or may not, be an offense in your jurisdiction.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
You answered the wrong question by lm (2.00 / 0) #11 Fri Aug 22, 2014 at 05:47:21 AM EST
It was about being robbed rather than being mugged.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
I tend to agree with ammo... by bobdole (4.00 / 1) #12 Fri Aug 22, 2014 at 11:58:30 AM EST
...so I'll answer for him, with a question:

If somebody says "the team was robbed of the victory", do you imply that the winning side should be punished?
As robbery is punishable pretty much everywhere.

However, I'm capable of distinguishing between colloquial phrases and criminal justice. I'm pretty sure you are too.
-- The revolution will not be televised.

[ Parent ]
That question can be as easily asked of ammo by lm (4.00 / 1) #13 Fri Aug 22, 2014 at 06:03:12 PM EST
If somebody says "the team murdered their opponents", do you imply that the winning side should be punished? As murder is punishable pretty much everywhere.

I don't think that has anything to do with what ammo and I are discussing which is literally being robbed or murdered.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
not really by bobdole (2.00 / 0) #17 Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 04:38:22 AM EST
as literally being killed and literally being murdered is not identical.
They are only identical in the subset of killing when it's unlawful (and often something about intent).

I can't really see any upside to blurring this distinction other than dumbing down the language. Having different words for overlapping concepts is a nice idea, if you ask me. Saves a bit of time when discussing abstract concepts.
-- The revolution will not be televised.

[ Parent ]
I would certainly agree with distinction by lm (2.00 / 0) #18 Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 07:05:26 AM EST
At least the first part, that being killed and being murdered are not always the same thing. But to say that the distinction between those two words is the same as the distinction between the words used literally and the words used figuratively is a gross error.

It seems to me what you are saying is that the literal sense of the word 'murder' has only one possible meaning and that meaning is defined by the scope of law and whether or not a court has made a legal judgment. Does that sound right to you?

I deny that. I think the word has multiple literal senses ranging from the strictly legal to the ethical. And I do not think that using the word without relation to the legal system dumbs down the language or threatens the rule of law.

Which of these examples would you deny are murder:

Someone killed his wife in cold blood but was sufficiently competent in cleaning up afterwards to leave no evidence and was never tried and convicted,.

Something like the story of Cain and Able is true where one brother killed the other out of envy at a time before the rise of government and laws.

A state declares that it is  legal to kill people of a certain ethnicity and someone decides to go killing.

I would say that all of those are murder.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
I agree to disagree by bobdole (2.00 / 0) #19 Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 08:24:03 AM EST
I completely understand the logic behind your reasoning, but I'm also so inclined that I leave the concept of murder to be defined by the "judicial system" (which I now apply loosely given that you and me are subject to two different systems with only partial overlaps in definitions).

I would not deny that any of your examples could be murder (the last potentially even genocide given the appropriate details), and the fact that you are never tried and convicted doesn't change the act that it is illegal - however all of these examples are suspected murders until tried by an appropriate court. That is the cornerstone of modern society, why else should we keep these expensive institutions if we can determine guilt and culpability without them?

If I run a red light when nobody is watching, should it then be legal?

However, I'll leave it here as I think our "disagreement" is bordering on the purely academic/semantic, I believe we are pretty much aligned on the immorality of the act - but choose to align the concepts slightly different.

To bring it back to the original seed of the argument, I'm not convinced the original Missouri incident was a murder - not because I'm convinced that police officers never do anything wrong, but from the few details I've heard I haven't heard enough to convince me either way on the question of lawful killing (or not) and justifiable use of force.
-- The revolution will not be televised.

[ Parent ]
That's fair enough by lm (2.00 / 0) #20 Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 11:50:28 PM EST
But Ammo's point, and the one that I was disagreeing with, is that the Missouri incident is not murder entirely because no one has been convicted.

If I read your response correctly, you wouldn't hold conviction up as the sole truth maker for the question of whether or not it was murder. After all, you seem to think that running red lights is illegal whether or not one is caught. But if I read Ammo right, we can't say that someone is a speeder unless that someone is convicted of speeding.

I am in the same boat as you in that I have not seen enough evidence one way or the other to affirm whether any crime was committee over the shooting of an unarmed civilian in Ferguson. But that doesn't mean that other people aren't in a better position to know the facts on the ground.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
facts on the ground by bobdole (2.00 / 0) #21 Sun Aug 24, 2014 at 05:21:03 AM EST
certainly not, and like you I hope there are some more facts. However I do think its unfortunate to paint someone as a murderer (i.e. having done something illegal) through the world media before a potential trial. It doesn't really help for a fair and just trial if everybody has agreed that it was unlawful before hearing the facts.

To me the middle way is usually the word "suspected xxx" where xxx can be murderer/speeder/whatever. At least it gives an air of suspense with regards to the question of guilt (and culpability).

Like most drivers I've run several red light in my life and broken the speed limit on several occasions. For the wast majority of them, I've not been caught - in fact I've never had a ticket for running a red light, even though I've been caught once (by a giant stroke of luck). So by my own words, I'm not a "habitual red-light-runner" (in lack of a better label), but I might be a suspected one.

(This is also ignoring the fact that most traffic offences are not criminal offences in my "hood" - and as such is a different beast).
-- The revolution will not be televised.

[ Parent ]
Pretty sure those are synonyms by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #14 Fri Aug 22, 2014 at 08:34:42 PM EST
particularly considering "strong-arm robbery" as a common term.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
Not according to the law by lm (4.00 / 1) #15 Fri Aug 22, 2014 at 10:03:28 PM EST
For example, the Ohio revised code defines robbery: http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/2911.02

But it has no mention of mug, muggery, mugging or mugged.

Consequently, they can't be synonyms for one who is trying to claim that the narrow the legal sense of the term has priority.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
to attack and rob (someone) in a public place. by ammoniacal (2.00 / 0) #16 Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 12:13:00 AM EST
Yeah, it's a synonym.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

[ Parent ]
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