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What is justice?

By James Goodman

Guest Writer, Lansing

What is justice? If I ever met justice would I know what he looks like? Is justice something that can be objectively viewed? Is justice something that you can look up in Webster’s Dictionary and instantly become a qualified expert on the matter? Can justice be measured or quantified by an algorithmic formula? No, that can’t be right. Does anyone know how old justice is? Has justice been around long, or is he fairly new to the area? Is justice black, white, or…oh never mind. I forgot that justice doesn’t have a skin color. So if no one knows who or what justice is, then how will anyone know how to find him when he is needed most?

Wait! I’ve got it. I know what justice is.

Well I think I do. I mean I am in law school, so I have to know what justice is…right? Justice is when a man is allowed to judge a child without knowing one single thing about him, other than the color of his skin and the clothes that he is wearing. Justice is when a man can be filled with disgust for another human being before that person utters one word. Justice doesn’t believe in fair.  I mean how could he? Justice lets you bring a gun to a food fight. Justice assures you that on your way home at night from the store, you have nothing to be afraid of because the neighborhood watchman is faithfully patrolling. “Don’t worry” justice tells you. He has been watching this neighborhood for over two years. It is good to know that justice has my best interests at heart and that safety is his number one priority.

Justice is when a Mother and Father learn that their 17 year old son was shot and killed on his way home to watch an all-star basketball game with his younger brother. Keep your head up though, because justice is everywhere, and he saw who killed this young child. Wait…are you positive that Justice knows who killed this little boy? “Yes, I am positive”, justice says.

Justice sounds like they are on top of things. It’s good to know I can count on justice to be there for moments like this. So did justice have this man arrested that night for killing that child? No???? Well what did justice do then? Oh, justice questioned the killer for 15 minutes and then released him in that same night? Well I am sure justice arrested him the next day. No???? Well what did justice do? So you are telling me that justice waited 6 WEEKS before even charging this man of a crime? Well better late than never right. So what did justice do next?

Justice put this man on trial, during which justice was able to prove that this man lied numerous times about the events that happened on the night of the shooting. Justice made me a promise that this man would be held accountable for his actions and this boy’s death would be justified by the end of the trial.

Well, justice lied. JUSTICE saw a man who killed a 17 year old, unarmed boy go free. JUSTICE allowed a jury, not of the VICTIM’S peers, to go on doing something that this child will never be able to do again…living.

I have to say that I am quite disappointed in you justice, and I don’t know who you are anymore. Then again…maybe I never knew you to begin with.

James Goodman, III is a third term student at the Lansing campus