Friday, May 12, 2006

11 Angry Men...and One Coward [link]

The Washington Post reports that the vote to execute Zacarias Moussaoui was 11 to 1...and that the holdout did so anonymously.

The foreman said deliberations reached a critical point on the third day, when the process nearly broke down. Frustrations built because of the repeated 11 to 1 votes on one charge without any dissenting arguments during discussions. All the ballots were anonymous, and the other jurors were relying on the discussions to identify the holdout.

So, the holdout pretended to go along with everyone else during the discussions, but voted against the death penalty just the same. Who knows why the person hid...probably because they knew that, if identified, they would become the focus of the attentions of the others.

So, this was not a "12 Angry Men" scenario, rather, it was 11 Angry Men...and One Coward. A coward who did not have the dignity to speak up for their beliefs. A coward who made no effort to justify those beliefs or win others over by force of argument. No, this coward just kept voting against the death penalty and driving his or her fellow jurors to distraction.


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