Our states keep innocent people in prison

It is refreshing and inspiring that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) has recently made use of his singular power to grant absolute pardons to three wrongfully convicted men.

Bobbie Morman Jr., of Norfolk, spent 22 years in prison though an innocent man. Joey Carter, also of Norfolk, spent 25 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. Emerson Stevens, of Lancaster County, served 32 years for a murder committed by someone else. That someone has never been caught because police framed the wrong man.

Pardons and exonerations are bittersweet. On the one hand, the years of hard work by innocence lawyers ultimately pay off, and some measure of justice is found as the wrongfully convicted finally make their dramatic walk out of the prison gates. On the other hand, it is infuriating that our criminal justice system is so broken that bogus convictions happen at all. Innocent lives are destroyed. The guilty roam free. And the police and prosecutors are almost never made to answer for their bad behavior. If the authorities played by the rules, virtually all wrongful convictions could be avoided.

Reforms of this criminal use of the law are overdue. It takes a truly distorted class of abusive prosecution to try to defend mistakes like these. Frankly, “mistakes” is likely a misuse of the word. My life’s experience tells me these folks ended up in jail because lazy, often bigoted, officials made up their minds and then tailored their so-called evidence to suit their prejudice.

Enough! End these practices, now! It’s time that freedom, law-abiding, all those high school civics words pay attention to the truth.

For what it’s worth…

Released a few months earlier, I didn’t hear this till early spring 1967. Driving to my maternal grandparents’ home in Milan, NY…a bit outside Red Hook in Duchess County. There was a family favorite coffee stop west of the Connecticut state line…and this was on the juke box.

Someone else had played it. I heard it and went to the juke box to see who this was, the name of the song. And played it another 3 or 4 times before we left and continued on to Milan.

Bought the 45 when I got back to Connecticut.

Couple guys we all eventually heard of, one from Texas, one from Canada, wrote a bunch of songs together, singing and playing in the band. Stephen Stills, Neil Young. Stills wrote and sang the lead on this one.

Ready to go – almost

Manufacturers are stacking up unfinished goods on factory floors and parking incomplete vehicles in airport parking lots while waiting for missing parts, made scarce by supply-chain problems…

Companies determined to keep factories open are trying to work around shortages by producing what they can, at the same time rising customer demand has cleaned out store shelves, dealer showrooms and distribution centers. As a result, manufacturers are amassing big inventories of unsold or incomplete products such as truck wheels and farm tractors. Companies that are used to filling orders quickly now have bulging backlogs of orders, waiting for scarce parts or green lights from customers willing to take deliveries.

AFAIK, my wife’s soon-to-be Maverick Pickup ain’t out there in that field of Fords. They just didn’t get it made, yet.

We hope.