Guilty until Proven Innocent

It was never about states’ rights was it, Mr. President. It was about subverting ‘due process:’

The fifth amendment says to the federal government that ‘no one shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law.’ The fourteenth amendment, ratified in 1868, uses the same eleven words, called the Due Process Clause, to describe a legal obligation of all states. (1)

12:30 PM, June 24

The Kleig lights in the East Wing had barely warmed up and you, Mr. President, were pleading —’ admonishing’ is more precise — with the American public on cable TV not to be violent, to protest peacefully.

Correction, Mr. President, ‘ we’ are not going to be violent. ‘We’ are victims of violence. You’ve got it backwards. Kavanaugh-the big liar -backwards:

‘Things’ won’t ‘cool down’ at the local voting booth when we go to vote in ‘Friends of Roe.’

‘Things’ are violent now:

Tonight in my state of residence, Michigan, at midnight a law can go into effect reversing three generations of family-oriented medical practice: an abortion will be banned, regardless of cost or risk to a woman’s life, livelihood, and mental health.

Once again white men will preside over deciding a woman’s future, predominantly an impoverished, young, black girl’s future. She’s probably working three jobs to pay for an abortion. She will be fired. She will be confined to humiliation and peril. She will become a criminal.

‘Things’ are violent now:

Tomorrow in my state of residence, Michigan, a vote proposing 10 years prison time for performing an abortion, can be passed. Other laws designed to punish those who “assist” a Michigan resident in obtaining medical care can be passed.

‘Things’ are violent now:

Tomorrow in my state of residence, Michigan, a vote proposing to make it a crime to distribute oral contraception, the “morning after pill,” can be passed. Rapists, perpetrators of family violence, and their like can be emboldened, distrustful of rights, vindictive.

‘Things’ are violent now.

Mr. President, human rights are not the purview of state political whims, but the words and interpretation of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. “We hold these truths…” are the beginning words of the Declaration of Independence, not “this was an egregious decision…” or “abortion is not mentioned in the Constitution,” or “take your need for family medical care to the ballot box.”

We are not guilty until presumed innocent. We are not defeated, marginalized, stigmatized until represented by a political ally. We are not an afterthought, a charity cause, a guilt salve.

You’ve got it backwards, Mr. President.

June 25

1-Google search, “due process rights”




Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Rodney Clough

Rodney Clough

Refuses to nap. Septuagenarian. Cliche’ raker. Writes weekly.