I have thus far avoided putting up an entry on the Casey Anthony trial, even though, notwithstanding John Edwards' indictment and Rep. Wiener's Excellent Internet Adventures, it's the most prominent criminal case out there. I've stayed away because this site is (and we hope it remains) different from and better than People Magazine. But even more than that, the Casey Anthony trial is simultaneously disgusting and oddly routine.
It's disgusting for the obvious reasons; there's only so much you can, or would want to, say about a mother who suffocates her two year-old daughter and tosses her corpse into the woods.
It's routine because the outline of the defense, although in one way a surprise (having been sprung the first day of trial) is, at this point, standard issue: A cacophany of lies; free-floating and grotesque accusations against others; lots of "bad memory;" going to the hilt playing the victim (of childhood sexual abuse (what else)); and claims of panic -- said panic having lasted a month or so while the defendant declined to call the cops to report her daughter missing, then extending considerably longer while she made up an involved story about how she left the child with a non-existent baby sitter.
Although lying is off-the-shelf inventory for criminal defense, I must say the defense here has taken it to a different level. Ms. Anthony, her counsel tells us, lied about her toddler's "accidental" death because she was molested as a child by her father. (I believe the brother has been thrown in for good measure). The logical relationship of such abuse to the parade of lies years later has not been entirely explained.
Yikes. It makes you nostalgic for the Twinkie Defense.
For those interested, part of the story is here.