Friday, January 29, 2010

The Law Comes to Kansas

(CNN) -- A Kansas jury deliberated just 40 minutes before convicting an anti-abortion activist of first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of an abortion provider.

The jury found Scott Roeder, 51, guilty of gunning down Dr. George Tiller, who operated a clinic in Wichita where late-term abortions were performed. Roeder, 51, faces life in prison when he is sentenced on March 9. (“Activist Roeder convicted of abortion provider's murder”).

The court had earlier denied Roeder the use of the defense that he believed “circumstances existed that justified deadly force.”

That judge said more than he intended when he ruled that Scott Roeder would not be allowed to argue that he used justified force in killing the arch-abortionist. As Roeder flatly stated when cross-examined about whether he’d “completed his mission?”: He’s been stopped.” Mr. Roeder said. (“Doctor’s Killer Puts Abortion on the Stand”).

But the judge wasn’t having it.

"There is no imminence of danger on a Sunday morning in the back of a church, let alone any unlawful conduct, given that what Tiller did at his clinic Monday through Friday is lawful in Kansas," the judge said.

To which I say, So much the worse for Kansas.

Even if what Tiller did at his clinic five days a week is lawful in Kansas, it’s still unlawful in Heaven. And I can conceive that even at Reformation Lutheran Church, where Tiller was a Christian in Good Standing, they still recite that part of The Lord’s Prayer that request, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.”

Maybe, were it unlawful to fatally drill the skulls of full-term infants in Kansas, the judge would have seen his way to ruling that, yes, there is an imminent danger—in fact, a foreseeable one--to infants, mothers, and statutory rape victims. No one doubted that, had Roeder changed his mind and stayed away that Sunday, the following Monday morning would have found Tiller being convoyed to work to start right back in committing infanticides by the score.

Once Roeder was denied his only defense, Ann Swengel, the Kansas prosecutor, had an easy job to show Roeder was guilty of first-degree murder. Kansas law requires only two elements for a conviction on that charge: the killing of a human being, and that it be done intentionally and with premeditation. “He carried out a planned assassination,” Swengel told the jury today, “and there can be no other verdict in this case.”

You decide to kill a human being, folks, and then carry out that plan, we call that 1st-degree murder in Kansas. So boom, boom, says the jury after a 40 minutes. We find the defendant guilty.

Remember, it wasn’t Tiller (“the killing of a human being, intentionally and with premeditation”) on trial, but Roeder. Kathleen Sebelius and a raft of crooked Democrats through the years had always made damned sure that, in life, Tiller never went on trial. Here and here.

And of course we all know the law’s the law, right? That’s why the judge had to decide that Tiller, his appointment book black with premeditated homicides, was not an imminent danger. How could he be? “What Tiller did at his clinic Monday through Friday is lawful in Kansas.”

Just that easy.

But here’s a thought. There’s the law. And then there’s the Law.

Which is why, on second thought, I figure all those Wichita Lutherans praying for the Lord’s will to be done on earth may have been getting through, after all.

I can even believe that one Sunday God decided He’d answer that prayer right there in their own church foyer.

1 comment:

Wendy Woodley said...

Because of Scott Roeder's action, there may be a few babies that were then BORN. They would have escaped the cruel fate of having their skulls punctured and brains suctioned out; or having one of their limbs severed, without benefit of anesthesia, so they would die by hemorrhage while still in utero.
Because of Scott Roeder's action, there may be a few little human beings who, instead of enduring a grisly death, now have a chance, a future, a life. Those of us who pray should pray for these little ones!