Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Moccasin swap

There is an old Indian saying that is adapted from another old saying, that many cultures have altered to fit their particular culture, but the sentiment is still the same. The saying is:
"Don't let me criticize another until I have walked a mile in his moccasins."

I do try to see both sides when I am in a discussion with someone. If I can put myself in their shoes, then I am better able to discuss the issues with them, without getting defensive or being offensive.

Tammy is (or was) very upset about the courts/judges treatment of Chris. They wouldn't hear of any bail reduction. They have him in the jail on lockdown. He wasn't allowed to make phone calls. He wasn't allowed reading materials. He wasn't (and may not be still) allowed writing materials. He is not in with the general population. While she was in court for his arraignment, a man accused of several crimes, including a child sexual crime, was given a $2500 bond that was reduced to $250, and he was released. Chris was given a $7500 bond, full cash.

I explained that, while we know that Chris is a good kid that was in a bad situation that got out of control, and he is guilty of bad judgment, the judge only knows what the papers in front of her/him state. Those papers stated that Chris was a 19 year old, with family ties in Florida, that was arrested in a stabbing incident. While, I am not thrilled with what transpired, I can see the reason. This does not mean that I agree.

The good thing about this (if there is one) is that Chris lives with us. He isn't going to lose an apt for not being able to pay the rent and be on the street. He doesn't have a car, so it isn't going to be repo'ed when he cant make the payments. Further, his employer wrote a letter for the judge stating that Chris was a great worker and would keep his job regardless of the outcome. He, also, doesn't need to be around a bunch of criminals to learn from them. So, for all that is terrible about this situation, there are still some silverish linings around this dark cloud.

We spoke to a friend that is a lawyer last night. He told us to tell Chris to discuss his case with no-one, not even us. Overheard or taped conversations have a way of finding themselves into the wrong hands. Chris agreed to keep his mouth shut.

We have the funds to do his bond if it is reduced, but are still scraping for the cost of a good lawyer. Any donations ?

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