Wednesday, October 9, 2013
Amanda Knox Retrial
I've somewhat loosely followed the case of Amanda Knox, who was studying in Italy when she was accused of, tried for, and convicted of the slaying of her roommate. At some point, she was retried, acquitted, and released. She very smartly got the hell out of Citta Dodge, or however one might say "Dodge City" in Italian. I didn't closely examine the evidence and am far from an expert on the case, but I cannot help wondering just how many times the Italian government believes they are entitled to try a person for the same crime.
Ms. Knox doesn't seem to me to have the overall impression of a killer. Maybe that's just because she's pretty, although I like to think I'm capable of looking beyond that. In the interviews I've seen, Amanda Knox is fairly relatable. She's like the people who attend class with me (not necessarily the freshmen who were surrounding me until about ten minutes ago, but like my more mature classmates). I wasn't convinced at all by Jodi Arias, although I never thought she was all that pretty, and nothing about the way she looks, talks, or carries herself is in any way reminiscent of my classmates or relatives.
As sucky as our justice system seems to be, sometime we take the presumption of innocence for granted. It's a great idea and to me an essential one for a civilized society, but not all of our nation's counterparts agree with its premise, including much of Europe. Under our system, guilty people do walk out of courtrooms on occasion, but I wouldn't have our system be any other way. I wish justice weren't weighted disproportionately in favor of the wealthy or attractive, which is probably inevitable, but, for the most part, our system gets it right in a majority of cases.
If I were Amanda Knox, I would never leave the U. S. for the rest of my life. Extradition treaties aside, no other nation will attempt to safeguard her rights as much as will the nation of her birth. As someone who presumably enjoys world travel or she wouldn't have been studying abroad in the first place, this may be very difficult for her, but she would be wise to consider that her world-traveling days are over.
I never had time for studying abroad built into my educational plans. Many people have done it and have had fantastic life-changing experiences. Some of my cousins have studied in Europe and Australia. While I've spent my life staying out of significant trouble, it would be just my luck to be in the wrong place at the wrong time and end up in an international incident. I'm probably being a complete wimp, and I'm sure I will travel out of the U.S. again. I suppose being in the wrong place when a crime goes down could happen to me right where I am, but if it did, I'd prefer to take my chances while having all the rights afforded a person in the U.S.
I woke up at least one wing of the dorm with a hellacious nightmare last night. I didn't feel as guilty as I thought I would. I've lost enough sleep due to marijuana smoke, drunk and barfing neighbors, and all the issues that come with living among freshmen in a dorm. If they lose just a bit of sleep due to my screaming, it still won't come close to evening the score. Just the same, I'd prefer not to have more terrrible dreams anytime soon.