Diversity vs. Freedom (contd.): Lonnie Rae Sentenced To Seven Days In Jail

We`ve been reporting on the
Lonnie Rae case for some time. He`s the Idaho man who
was charged with a “hate crime” for calling a man who
assaulted his wife

a very bad word.
(See the press release from his
lawyer, Edgar Steele 
Say The "N" Word And Go To
Jail
.)

The Idaho Press-Tribune
reported at the time (October 2000):

Rae`s
wife, Kim, was covering the game as a freelance reporter
and photographer for the Adams County Record. After the
game, she tried to take pictures of the referees because
she thought it would add to her story.

When
she continued to snap pictures after the referees had
asked her to stop, one of the officials, Ken Manley of
Boise, was reported to have grabbed the camera and
pulled it, causing the strap to burn Kim Rae`s neck.

The
two were separated and the referees entered the locker
room. Witnesses said Lonnie Rae began yelling at Manley,
who is black, and repeatedly called him the “N-word.”
Rae declined to comment Monday.

Although Rae never actually
touched Kenneth Manley, there was talk of giving him up
to five years in jail under Idaho`s anti-hate-crime
statutes, the issue being the racism implicit in the
slur (See my earlier article

Diversity vs. Freedom in Idaho: Race Relations Industry
Enters Spanish Inquisition Phase
).

The latest development: a judge
has actually sentenced him to seven days in jail. Rae`s
lawyer, Edgar Steele, persuaded the judge to defer the
actual execution of the sentence while it is being
appealed to the Idaho Supreme Court.

Briefly, Rae was found

not guilty
of

Malicious Harassment
 by the Idaho jury. But the
judge seems to have felt that he should be found guilty
of something, so that he added the idea of
“assault” as lesser included offence in the summing up
period, after the trial was over – somewhat like

A.P. Herbert`s
fictional English Judge who

said
:

It is a principle of English law
that a person who appears in a police court has done
something undesirable.

Liberty is not very well
understood by judges. And they have the power to make
their ideas law. The same fictional English Judge I
quoted above, faced with the assertion by a defendant
that “this was a free country and a man can do what he
likes if he does nobody any harm,” replied:

It
cannot be too clearly understood that this is not
a free country, and it will be an evil day for the legal
profession when it is. The citizens of London must
realize that there is almost nothing that they are
allowed to do. Prima facie all actions are
illegal, if not by Act of Parliament, by Order in
Council; and if not by Order in Council, by Departmental
or Police Regulations, or By-Laws. They may not eat
where they like, drink where they like, walk where they
like, drive where they like, sit where they like, or
sleep where they like.

Or say what they like, of course.

England was never as free a
country as America (and it`s getting

worse
), but America is supposed to be run on
different lines.

Isn`t it?

Previous coverage of the Lonnie
Rae case:

12/27/01 – Diversity vs. Freedom in Idaho (contd.): Rae
Acquitted on Felony, Convicted on “Misdemeanor”

Diversity vs. Freedom (contd.): What First Amendment? –
By Sam Francis

Diversity vs. Freedom in Idaho: Race Relations Industry
Enters Spanish Inquisition Phase

Diversity vs. Freedom in Idaho: Paul Craig Roberts
Answers An Over-Scrupulous Very Conservative …

Freedom vs. Diversity In Idaho: What Equal Protection?

February 07, 2002