Battlepanda: The next steps towards Justice for Cory Maye


Always trying to figure things out with the minimum of bullshit and the maximum of belligerence.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The next steps towards Justice for Cory Maye

As I predicted, the response from the Left Blogisphere for the case of Cory Maye has been fantastic once the story starting breaking in more blogs here. Now most of the big boys are on board. This is not to say, of course, that the libertarians and conservatives have not continued to do a great job. But the meme that liberals just don't care about Cory because we don't like the fact that he used a gun to defend himself or something is soundly slain. Hate to pull a kindergarten teacher trick on you, but we all did good. No winners and losers. Lets concentrate on the next step towards getting Cory Maye some of that Freedom business.

But so far, there is absolutely no mention of the case in any actual newspaper or other non-blog outlet indexed by Google, and as far as I can tell no statement on the case by any actual politician or any organization more powerful than the Innocence Project. If the save-Cory campaign remains confined to cyberspace, then we can confidently predict that its impact on Planet Earth will be negligible.

So now we get to see whether the combined power of the Blogosphere is sufficient to generate coverage from someone in the mainstream media, or a speech by an actual politician (Wesley Clark? Hilary Clinton? Bill Clinton? Mark Warner? Barak Obama? John McCain?) that would in turn generate mainstream-media coverage. It seems like a challenge worth taking. Personally, though, I wouldn't wager a nickel on the outcome, either way.

Mark Kleiman is, as always right. We need to find some ways to port this puppy off the blogs. All I know is, this case is so absurd unjust that if we can only raise the profile on it enough, Cory Maye will walk free. Ideas...

1) Writing to Haley Barbour, Governor of Mississippi
On it's own, this might not do much. But combine with other media attention or threat of media attention, it might just convincing Barbour to use his powers to grant clemancy. Although, in Cory Maye's case, life imprisonment would hardly be justice. This is an especially good thing to do if you are conservative -- you will be able to let Barbour know that his own people are not happy about this.

Also, writing to letters to the editor page. Although, as I said above, those letters probably won't generate that much attention on their own even if they get printed. Once the ball starts rolling though, they will be a fantastic way to gain momentum.

2) Call in at your local Talk Radio station
I think this approach probably give the average Joe without connections the best chance of being heard by a large number of people very quickly. I haven't done any calling-in, but Gene left messages on all the Air America blogs. And I know some of my commenters have been calling all the big right-wing guys.

3) Pitch to the MSM
Of course, this is shooting the moon. But we do have people in the blogisphere who are connected with journalists. Or are journalists. I'll bet if 60 Minutes does a good segment on this, then Cory Maye would not have to die.

4) Where is the NAACP, ACLU...the NRA?
Those advocacy organizations should be a natural for taking up Maye's case. Contrary to the insinuations of some of our friends on the right, the Cory Maye case is just about chock full of liberal causes -- we've been banging on the race and civil rights drum for years. I know the ACLU do not take on criminal justice cases, but they filed an amicus on Tookie's behalf. Why not Maye too? And this is just a no-brainer for the NRA -- man condemned to death defending his home with a gun -- shouldn't this be their bread-and-butter?

5) Individual Politicians
Obvously, it will give the Maye case a great fillip if some politician will take up his cause. I automatically thought "Edwards". This case fits with his "standing up for the little guy" message. I mean, what can be a starker demonstration that there are two Americas as far as our criminal justice system is concerned?

6) Legal Defense Fund
Cory Maye did not just suffer from the cops and the jury. He had the misfortune to employ some darn sorry lawyers. Sometimes the direct approach is the best approach. If we can all pitch in and hire him some competent lawyers, we're giving Maye a fighting chance. Are there any defense lawyers out there reading this? It seems like a good candidate for pro bono work.