Criminal law's rampant indulgence of slick practice, diversion, soft-core perjury, non-stop whining and concocted portrayal of the miscreant as victim did not come from nowhere. Today I got a glimpse of where it comes from, although I'm not sure whether what I'm looking at is the starting point or the ending point of a sick culture.
This is the story: A high school kid in an honors English class copied someone else's homework. He got caught. He and his mother had signed an "Academic Honesty Pledge" at the beginning of the school year that declares cheating is grounds for immediate removal from the advanced-level program. (Think for a moment about what it means that such a pledge was considered necessary to start with).
There are those who think that cheating is serious and might warrant something more punitive than getting transferred from the advanced class to the regular class. Indeed, a troglodyte might think that cheating could warrant expulsion, a long suspension, an automatic failing grade, or something along those lines.
But the young man's father, a "family lawyer," is suing the school district on the grounds that his son was not afforded -- you guessed it -- due process. The important point, to this paternal excuse for a moral mentor, is not that his kid is a cheater, which no one is disputing. The important point is, pop alleges, that not everyone gets transferred out for a first offense. His son is a victim. Indeed, now the whole family have become victims, because they have received phone messages expressing disapproval of the lawsuit.
Now what do you think is son is going to take away from this experience?
Yikes. If I had pulled a stunt like this in high school, not only would my parents not have sued the school district; I'd still be grounded.