Saturday, October 29, 2005

Blackmail: Government Style

Nice timing.
LAFAYETTE / Suspect's mom agrees to testify / Charges that she was an accessory to murder are dropped: "Moments after Superior Court Judge David Flinn read the single felony count charging Fielding with that crime, prosecutor Harold Jewett told her that the charge would be dropped if she would testify before a grand jury.

'She agreed, and we moved to drop the charges,' Jewett said after the hearing.

Fielding's attorney, Barry 'Blackie' Burak, would not comment, citing a temporary gag order Flinn issued Thursday. Jewett also declined to discuss the agreement further.

Court documents released Friday show that prosecutors began calling witnesses before a grand jury on Tuesday.

'The way it happened was highly unusual. At its essence, it is an immunity agreement,' said Jim Hammer, a former San Francisco prosecutor who is now a television legal analyst. 'Usually these things happen behind closed doors. This one happened right out in front of us. I think (her arrest) was an expedited way to get an immunity agreement out of this person.'"
I'll bet there's a gag oder. If I had been the kid's mother I would have turned him in, but I wouldn't testify against him and this looks like a positively blatant maneuver to force her onto the stand. If spouses can't be forced to testify, parents should not be forced to testify against their children. You say you want children to confide in their parents. If your child feels that nothing they tell you will be protected, this generation will start editing conversations and eliminate a trusted source of information.

If you don't have a good relationship with your parents, legislating behavior will not improve it. Parents are already feeling the need to interfere in kids personal lives even more than their parents did and each generation will rebel in its own way.

Maybe we should stop regulating the parental process. Parents are forced to vaccinate and their children can be taken from them if they don't want their child to undergo certain medical procedures. Whatever happened to making decisions for your family?

Only if society approves.

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