I enjoyed the discussion, too, although I have been thinking about how I can have these theoretical discussions about the ideals of our system, and see its advantages over other possible systems, but I am white and have that mental space to do so in the moment. I worry about my Black and Brown classmates for whom this is personal on a different level--how it might feel as though even calling anything about our system's foundation idealistic is problematic. That having a "logical" discussion about it could be violent in itself.
it just seems academically dishonest and cheap to consistently say "the entire system is broken therefore discussing things is a waste of time" everybody knows the system is completely broken, that is why we are in a class called Fair Trial where we discuss nothing but unfair trials. It is borderline insulting to Professor Nesson, a literal expert on the concept of trials, to consistently be saying the things he wants to discuss are pointless and that engaging in the material isn't useful
great class - also appreciate Gaia & Anthony. I'd say we need to better address the concerns raised by Kiah - especially because I have a feeling that many of us are just completely disillusioned by the aspirational nature of these concepts / we know that in reality none of this is actually true (especially at this moment in time). Subjectivity is true - but veiled notions of logic, objectivity, and neutrality - are not. So we need to address how trials can better comport to human subjectivity - and whether these settings are an adequate space at all when we consider the risk a defendant takes in choosing to go to trial in the criminal context (i.e. facing the wrath of an angry prosecutor, more charges, less resourced, etc. etc.)
Triton: I'm not sure anyone says it isn't useful. It'd the system we have, and we need to be able to understand it. But it can be harmful to engage without noting the ways in which members of our community (and all of us by extension) are impacted by the way our trials play out.
Hengfors, I am reposting it here: I enjoyed the discussion, too, although I have been thinking about how I can have these theoretical discussions about the ideals of our system, and see its advantages over other possible systems, but I am white and have that mental space to do so in the moment. I worry about my Black and Brown classmates for whom this is personal on a different level--how it might feel as though even calling anything about our system's foundation idealistic is problematic. That having a "logical" discussion about it could be violent in itself.
I'm honestly not even sure. Maybe at least the opportunity to (at some point) dig into alternatives activists have been promoting over the past decade or so? I also think threads and even posting on Canvas as an option is helpful because it allows us time to process before being asked to speak when some of what we discuss might hinder that in the moment for various reasons.
@Triton, I don't think anyone is saying that his discussion points are pointless and what not, nor is anyone saying that discussing the system is a waste of time. Charles Nesson is a fantastic professor and he offers invaluable insight that are great jumping points for the rich discussions we have. I think it is too myopic to think that confirming the harms of this broken system is academically dishonest and cheap - if we're going to have a rich discussion, we have to apply what we hear from Professor Nesson to the existence of this broken system, and that will necessitate actively discussing the pervasiveness of that system. We won't be able to truly benefit from the course if we don't actively discuss ways to proactively address why there is so much futility embedded in our conceptualization of fair trial
@milky way I am not making an evaluation of if it's helpful or not. Just you made an assertion of how Black and Brown student's ability to engage with the discussion, which may be too broad of a brush, so it raises a lot of questions of how we should engage with these conversations and if so, what we're actually trying to protect. and what you based that premis in.
I think it was more of a reflection than anything and it certainly demonstrates the value of having multiple modes of participation (Threads, Canvas, etc.). I am not someone who experiences what I described in the same way, so I can't speak for what might be helpful in a very concrete way. My hope was that it might also open up the door to brainstorming some of that as a collective
Agree that we all know "everything is unfair" and refusing to engage in any discussion by saying "the whole system is white supremacy so this isn't a conversation worth having" isn't actually trying to understand it. Also agree we want to note the ways in which members of our community are impacted by bias, racism, and injustice — even more reason to actually have these conversations and not shut them down at the outset