The Jury is the greatest achievement of the Anglo-Saxon legal system. No matter how much pressure from kings and lords, or in our ease politicians and the media, "twelve good men and true" can do the right thing, so to speak. And that is exactly what they did in the case of Rodney King, although it could not have been easy for them to stand up to the hatred of the entire Establishment. How heartening that they did, for if the Los Angeles Four had been convicted of the charges against them, justice would have been suborned by hysteria. King was always described in the media as a "black motorist." Well, yes, but that is hardly a sufficient description.
King, an ex-con with a long police record, speeded at 100 mph for eight miles through a residential neighborhood while the police tried to pull him over. When the cops finally succeeded, the six-foot-three, 250-pound perpetrator resisted arrest, spat at the cops, danced maniacally, made obscene gestures at a policewoman, and refused to do as he was told.
The police thought King was on PCP. Instead, he was one of those reckless drunks that MADD always warn us against. Did the malt liquor bull have a gun? He wouldn't let himself be frisked, and he kept grabbing at his waist. Even if he didn't, might he have overpowered a cop, grabbed his pistol, and opened fire? It's happened, and the police were right to worry.
They ordered him to stand...