A look back at OCGJ’s first year
It’s hard to believe this our 53rd post in 2014…..and that’s not a typo. Since January 1st, 2014 fell on a Wednesday, there were 53 Wednesdays in 2014. In any case, we’d like to pause and look back on our first year…..where we started…..where we are today…..and where we’re headed.
For starters, our “business plan” is on track. Although we have not gained many visible followers, we sense some of the right people are reading our blog with regularity, not to mention our archive documenting nefarious activity by the political class continues to grow without being challenged. As I review our CONOPS and frequently asked questions, our focus has not wavered since our inaugural post on January 1st, 2014. But before we launch into 2015, it’s worth our time to do a shallow dive into the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights that not only guarantee our First Amendment rights but also open a clear window to the abuses of the political class regarding due process and the rule of law.
The 5th Amendment reads, “No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury…, nor be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law…..” As OCGJ and others have pointed out, the political class has hijacked the 5th Amendment to the point where the Grand Jury is a “prosecutors’ panel,” not a citizens’ panel as was intended by the Founders and those that came before them. With the prosecutor as gatekeeper for the evidence a Grand Jury sees and doesn’t see the Grand Jury has become a tool of the political class to arbitrarily choose who has to answer for a “capital or otherwise infamous crime” and who doesn’t. Ohio Citizens Grand Jury provides an outlet for the citizen class to push back on the Grand Jury process in a peaceful way with the objective of returning it to its intended purpose.
The 6th Amendment reads, “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed:” But considering the outrageous cost for a citizen to defend herself after indictment by the tarnished grand jury process, the accused are often forced to settle unless they have deep pockets of their own to battle the taxpayer-funded judicial process. Furthermore, our system of justice as we know it today has evolved into a jobs program for many attorneys who often have more regard for personal gain than due process and the rule of law.
Take for example former Mike DeWine law partner, Greg Lockhart. According to Mr. Lockhart’s resume with the law firm Taft Stettinius & Hollister, from September 2009 to the present Lockhart has been a member of Taft’s Litigation practice and also active in White Collar Criminal Defense. Lockhart’s resume also lists his duties from 2001 to 2009 as prosecuting public corruption and white collar fraud. Imagine the advantage a corrupt politician or white collar criminal would have with Greg Lockhart as his defense counsel who has argued the law from both sides and commands significant leverage in the courtroom as a former U.S. Attorney, not to mention he is a 40-year acquaintance with Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine.
The paradox manifest in this judicial revolving door rests in “stare decisis,” or “to stand by things decided,” or the doctrine of precedent. It would seem the same precedents that convicted criminals would be a nemesis to defending them, but somehow that doesn’t matter when slick attorneys become adept at disingenuously applying precedents that became law centuries after legitimate due process precedent was first established by the Constitution and Bill of Rights. The only true precedents relating to due process and the rule of law are those that rest in the Constitution and Bill of Rights, not those manufactured by a misguided judges and prosecutors who act in their own self-interest as well as serving the masters of the political class.