Jury selection in Roger Clemens’ perjury charges began today, and in the wake of yesterday’s Casey Anthony verdict, the New York Post’s Mike Vaccaro finds it “difficult to build an angry lather,” regarding The Rocket. “Justice is making someone answer for a dead 2-year-old girl,” muses the Daily News-baiting Vaccaro, “It’s not trying to catch a 48-year-old man in a fib.” Even if, for instance, the same 48 year-old man personally lobbied members of Congress and all but invited today’s exercise upon himself with misleading testimony he could’ve avoided.
Is it really in the interest of justice — justice as we know it, justice that is supposed to protect us from murderers and rapists and arsonists and scam artists — to discover, once and for all, if he lied to Congress? Is it really worth the hours, and the effort, and the dollars, to try to put Roger Clemens in jail for more than what would be a huge dose of shock value? Do his baseball transgressions — for which he’ll have to answer, and the results aren’t likely to be to his liking — really merit the scrutiny of a jury?
“What if arguably the greatest pitcher of the last half-century does jail time?” Bob Costas recently told the Washington Post. “That would reverberate for a while.”
Yes it would. Will that really make us feel better, if Clemens winds up doing time? Is there an actual victim? No. Justice serves nobody here, just an abstraction. And is that really the best way to occupy the system’s time?
Who is the good guy in all of this, McNamee? Maybe the other tabloid in town thinks so, since it’s used him in uber-cheesy online fitness videos at the same time it was telling his side of the Clemens saga, a duality that’s beyond dubious. But McNamee is no angel, and is at least one of many of co-conspirators who helped visit this steroid scourge upon baseball. Are we supposed to cheer because after so many years he decided to stop lying?
Though it would be the height of hysteria to equate Clemens’ crimes with those of a child murderer, if Vacarro truly believes justice is supposed to protect us from “scam artists”, it’s hard to see how this case doesn’t fit the bill.