An alert and highly intelligent reader sends a reminder that today marks the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King's Letter from the Birmingham Jail.
King's brilliant letter contained one of the most profound quotations in American history:
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
Martin Luther King, Jr., - Letter from Birmingham jail
April 16, 1963
How far have we really come in Alabama over the past 45 years? We have U.S. attorneys like Alice Martin in Birmingham and Leura Canary in Montgomery, who seem to have no conception of truth or the rule of law. We have Republican-packed appellate courts, shaped largely by two men--Karl Rove and Bill Canary--who seem to tweak their nose at the law without a thought. And justices on our Supreme Court cheat the state out of a $3.6 billion judgment because they've taken money from the oil industry. We have a former governor who was unquestionably wrongly imprisoned and almost certainly wrongly convicted, in a trial conducted by a judge with myriad conflicts of interest. A Missouri attorney has stated in an affidavit that he has evidence of criminal activity by this judge, and yet Alabama's brain-dead press has never, to my knowledge, written a word about it.
Finally, for what it's worth, in the Republican stronghold of Shelby County--which you think might be a somewhat enlightened place considering that its the fastest growing, wealthiest county in Alabama--a couple is under threat of having their house snatched for no lawful reason. Why are they facing this threat? It's because of the blog you are reading.
Which raises the question: What is being written here that GOP authorities so badly do not want you to read? I write the darn thing, and I haven't got a clue.
Attorney Bill Swatek has a 30-year record of sleaze that is public record. I'm not writing a thing that isn't well known in the Birmingham legal community. And I've talked to probably a dozen or more local lawyers who acknowledge that judges like Mike Joiner and Dan Reeves routinely cheat parties. Do these lawyers have the guts to try to do something about it? Evidently not.
But what happens when one of those cheated parties has the audacity to share his story with the public? Well, let's take his house from him. We must not let the "great unwashed" know about our heaping piles of smelly laundry.
Justice in America might be under a greater threat than at any time since King wrote the famous words cited above. What are Americans going to do about it?