Some of use believe in the institution of government enough
to want to hold it to a certain level of standards. You would
think the socialists would care more about government than us
freedom-loving individualists. Anarchists love pointing to
these things as evidence justifying their view of government.
I am of the opinion that lying under oath is enough for
removing him. The following essay was written by a friend
of mine after his son was assaulted a week or so ago.
Message: "Should we expect the truth?"
Written by Greg Norton on Thu Sep 3 08:14:30 1998
This is personal, so it will be easy to become emotional and sympathetic, or
to impute purely emotional motives and thought processes to me, but it is a
case study in principles, one that deserves your intellect, not your
emotions. It is also true, so I don?t have to make up a hypothetical case.
It does not involve sex so all of you can keep your intellects on-line.
Last Saturday my elder son, Scott, a college sophomore, went camping with 5
male friends and 4 young women, all from the University of Idaho, staying
overnight in a county park by a lake 30 miles or so from Moscow. There were
other groups around the lake, one large one with 20 or 30 boys and men from
high school age to late 20?s, and about 15 high school girls, many evidently
sophomores and juniors. During the evening some of the girls wandered
through college group?s camp "trash talking" the college girls who responded
in kind. The high schoolers left with threats of "making" the other group
About 11:30 or so, the high school girls came back en mass, invading the
college kids? camp, knocking down the college girls and fighting with the
young men. The college men tried to separate the women and protect their
friends. Scott noticed a large body of men coming through the trees in the
dark toward the camp from a different direction. He went out with his hands
extended outward to make the peace, apologize if necessary, even offer to
leave. Before he got 5 words out somebody from out of the dark slammed a
fist into the left side of his face. He felt several other blows before
noticing the glint of a beer bottle, then he lost consciousness. One of
Scott?s friends looked to where he had last seen Scott and saw only a tight
mass of men kicking at something in their midst. Trevor, a slight man,
perhaps 5 foot eight and 150 lbs soaking wet in his ski clothes, fought his
way into the mob and pulled 6 foot, 210 pound Scott out and to the fire.
Their manhood vindicated, having taught those snotty college kids a lesson,
the brave red-necks of Idaho returned to their camp.
Trevor took Scott into town; an ambulance took Scott back to Moscow where
his gashed brow and shredded lip (it was cut clear through from the outside
down to the inside as far down as you can reach with your tongue) were
patched up. There was nothing the ER staff could do about the 3 missing
front teeth, the obviously broken upper jaw, nor the massive swelling on his
forehead except clean him. They could not give Scott pain medication because
opiates are dangerous for someone with a concussion.
Ultimate damage assessment: left upper jaw (maxilla) broken along a line
from the bottom of his nose horizontally back past his wisdom teeth, along
his pallet, and down between his front teeth (or where they used to be).
Three pieces total. Right upper jaw cracked along the same line, but not
displaced. Left cheek bone (zygoma) broken completely off and shoved down
and into his major front sinus. Left ocular orbit cracked inward in the area
where the zygoma was broken off. Three broken teeth and, of course, the
three missing ones in front. In short, a serious, brutal beating of one of
the two people on Earth whom I most love. Not the results of a fight- only
one side threw punches, only one side threw beer bottles (several), only one
side with injuries (well not entirely true, I?m guessing there were a couple
of broken hands and I know a couple of guys cut their knuckles on teeth.
Perhaps some sore toes, too- not all rednecks wear steel-toed boots.) It was
an attack, an assault, unprovoked, and brutal. The same thing happened last
year to a group of Washington State students at about the same time of year,
with many of the same people involved on the attacking side. Insufficient
evidence to convict anyone.
That?s the background, not so you will feel sympathy (though prayers are
welcome) but so that you will understand the raw power of the principles
involved, the principles some of you want to deny. For the point of this
essay starts here:
I have three choices, as a father, in dealing with those who grievously
harmed the son I held when he was less than a minute old:
1. I can thank the Lord that he will heal with few scars, not many
nightmares, and the best artificial teeth money can buy, forgetting those
who harmed him, secure in the knowledge that Scott will never be back at
that campground, in harms way. I?d even feel sorry for you when your son is
assaulted, even crippled, by the same group next year. Tsk tsk. And if
nothing is done, it will happen again.
2. I can encourage and assist the police, confident that they can get to the
truth, and that witnesses who know what happened yet are reluctant to talk
can be compelled, under oath, to reveal who did what to Scott. For, you can
be sure, there were only 4 or 5 hard-cases (maybe as few as two) who led the
assault and did the damage; hardened violent psychopaths on their way to
prison or early, violent deaths. The other 25 or so men were hangers-on, a
cheering section, shouting from the back rows, hoping to get in a weak punch
or kick, taking their main satisfaction from the manifest violence of the
ring-leaders. The hangers-on are mostly good men, experimenting with
violence and mob membership while drunk. If they knew the extent of Scott?s
injuries they would feel remorse, even guilt. Some of them probably feel
remorse already. Some of those remorseful ones saw the damaging blows, saw
who swung the beer bottle, remember who suggested and organized the raid.
These people can offer the testimony to bring the brutal ones to justice, to
end the violence and make the campground safe for your son. Or daughter.
Scott remembers little, none of it clearly. His companions had their hands
full with the girls, the diversionary tactic that prevented the college men
from protecting each other. They did not see the blows, only the sickening
3. I can take care of it myself. The police know who did it. I?ve seen their
pictures. And two of them have been "in the area" when at least 3 other
night-time campground assaults were committed, blows thrown from out of the
darkness, and the victims too dazed to be absolutely sure in court just who
it was who hit them. These two were stopped by the investigating deputy,
speeding away from the campground at 85mph in a 45 zone, their right hands
swollen and bleeding, perhaps broken. These two men followed the deputy back
to the campground. When the deputy asked one of the high school girls to
come over to talk, one of the two moved her way and told her "Don?t say a
f---ing word". You don?t have to be Sherlock Holmes to know how he hurt his
hand, to know that he broke my son?s face. A little Aristotelian logic is
sufficient. I can find these two, or wait for them at the campground;
they?ll be back. Their beer bottles and drunken fists would be no match for
Pre-civilization fathers had only options 1 and 3; option 2 did not exist.
Option 2 depends on the ability to gather evidence and obtain testimony,
truthful testimony, even from reluctant witnesses, witnesses who would
rather not have their parents and teachers and girlfriends know that they
cheered, that they threw ineffectual punches, that they stood by and watched
a brutal beating. Witnesses who would rather lie than tell the truth, if
lying has no consequences.
And you sophisticated barbarians want to take option 2 away from me. You
think it is OK for someone to lie under oath if he thinks the case is
nonsense, to squirm and deceive and give false impressions if some twisted
logic can assert that the actual words were not "legally" false. Perjury is
no big deal, you say, it doesn?t matter. We should have no expectation that
someone who swears to tell the truth will actually do so because, after all,
And the oath is to tell the truth: not just to avoid lying, but to tell the
truth. Be sure: even if Clinton did not lie, he also did not tell the truth,
hence he violated his oath, he perjured himself. It was a civil case, so
self incrimination was not an issue. He violated a sacred, essential oath by
not telling the truth, and you justify him, asserting that he is no worse
than anyone else. You want to make a mockery, a sham of option 2, reducing
it to option 1 and nothing more.
"Tell the court what happened that night"
"Uh we had a fire"
"Uh, we had some beer"
"Did you see who hit Scott with the beer bottle?"
"Uh, not clearly" Which is true: he was drunk and not seeing anything
clearly, but he knows who had a shaved head and wore the pink Grateful Dead
T-shirt and he saw the guy with the shaved head and pink shirt swing the
bottle, but technically this is not a lie because the view was a little
"Do you know who hit Scott with the bottle?"
"Uh, not for certain." Which is also true- after all, somebody could have
shaved his head and put on that shirt at the last minute. It could happen.
"Who do you think hit him with the bottle?"
"Uh, I?m not sure" Which is technically not false, because how can anyone be
SURE what he thinks? I mean, the thinker is thinking about what he thinks;
this is a fundamental metaphysical question about which philosophers have
"Thank you, Mr. Clinton. You may step down"
That is why perjury is such a heinous crime- worse than what was done to my
son. Perjury destroys civilization by destroying civilized means of
resolving disputes. Why bother with the police and courts if I cannot expect
men to tell the truth when they have sworn to do so? Why expect an
18-year-old to tell the truth under oath if we cannot expect it of the
And if I take option 3, you will be in the front lines condemning me.
You disgust me.