Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Late Martin Grossman

The Late Martin Grossman

As has made the news rounds by now, Martin Grossman, mentioned in this Blog's postings of posting of 24 January 2010 and 14 January 2010, has finally served his death sentence. He was executed by lethal injection yesterday (16 January 2010) at the Florida State Prison at Starke.

As mentioned in prior postings, I have received many missives attempting to enlist my support to supplicate Governor Crist to commute the death sentence, and have not gone along with them because I believe that Martin Grossman's crime well merited the sentence.

Now that Martin Grossman has passed on, I now set forth my thoughts (in no particular order):

1. My empathies are squarely with the family of the victim, Florida Wildlife Officer Margaret "Peggy" Park, who, by all accounts, was dedicated to the job she loved. I hope that they have found some sort of closure. And I hope that Officer Park can now repose in peace.

2. Most of the aforementioned appeals from various individuals and organizations contain the following quotation from Prof. Alan Dershowitz:

"Even those who strongly support capital punishment would limit it to recidivists or people who commit the most heinous of crimes. Martin Grossman fits neither of those categories. He does not belong on death row. His crime, committed when he was a teenager, was unplanned, unpremeditated and impulsive—the product of a serious mental illness, that can now be proved by medical technology that was unavailable at the time of his sentencing. He has been in prison for more than a quarter of a century, during which time he has been a model prisoner who has shown great remorse for what he did. All that he is seeking now is a 60 day postponement of his execution, so that his supporters can martial the evidence and present his case for clemency. No one should be rushed to execution while doubts remain unresolved. Justice demands that he be given the 60 days to prove that he does not deserve to die at the hands of the state."

Without going into my own reservations about Prof. Dershowitz, the following is noted:

A. Grossman WAS a recidivist. He murdered Officer Park while free on probation for another crime; and in violation of that probation he burglarized a house and took possession of a firearm from that house.

B. Re Dershowitz's phraseology "No one should be rushed to execution while doubts remain unresolved." Is 25 years on death row a rush to execution?

3. One of the organizations that strongly advocated for sparing Grossman's life was the Agudath Israel of America, of which I have blogged several times. The Agudath Israel, an organization with its own set of issues and problems, has compromised its ability to oppose future death sentences. This may well come back to haunt them.

4. I did not sleep well last night or the night before. This is not an uncommon occurrence with me, but some of my sleeplessness the last two night was connected to thoughts about Grossman. Actually, I should feel for my fellow Jews, even the likes of miscreants such as Grossman, so this was not necessarily a bad thing.

5. Along similar lines, the arguments proffered by the various Jewish organizations all boiled down to two rationales: (A) Grossman was a fellow Jew; and (B) Grossman became a changed man during his 25+ years of imprisonment. The former should be irrelevant to the administration of justice. As for the latter, if indeed Grossman became a changed man it was because (i) it is more difficult to obtain recreational drugs when one resides on death row in a prison; and (ii) the Aleph Institute organization, which reaches out to Jews who are not in proximity to Jewish communities (including the military and prisons), had a positive effect upon Grossman. The "fellow Jew" and "changed man" arguments, while not viewed as valid by me or by Governor Crist, are the natural, logical and inescapable results of the fact that the Jewish people strive for the ideal of helping our own in need. This is not a bad thing, and indeed, it is why we are still alive and thriving on this earth after thousands of years of persecutions, physical and spiritual. And it is why we will remain here, whether our enemies like it or not!

6. I don't see nearly as much in the media about other murderers who have been executed thus far during the year 2010: Vernon Smith and Mark Brown in Ohio; Gerald Bordelon in Louisiana; Kenneth Mosley and Gary Johnson in Texas; and Julius Young in Ohio. When a Gentile murders someone it is not nearly the big news story that it is when a Jew commits a serious crime like Grossman did. The story of a dog biting a man is of minimal newsworthiness, but the story of a man biting a dog puts ink on newsprint. And there is no doubt that of all the stories of fallen law enforcement officers on the Officer Down Memorial Page, the Jewish cop killers are well outnumbered by the Jewish officers who were killed in the line of duty. Heroes with names such as Marshalik, Galapo, Weiner, Gadell, Rakow, Kramer, Mirell, Schiffries, Fox, Astell, Rosenfeld, Cantor, Bloomfield, Borkin, Seiden or Katz!

7. It certainly distresses me that one of my fellow Jews died last evening. But it distresses me even more that one of my fellow Jews would commit acts as brutal as those committed by Grossman.

8. Bottom Line: Martin Grossman made some bad decisions. He has now borne the consequences of his decisions. Unfortunately, his decisions have resulted in the waste of two lives, his own and his victim's, and in untold anguish to his victim's friends and family, and to Grossman's friends and family, and to the Jewish community.

Justice has been served. A senseless tragedy has finally drawn to a close. I mourn the loss of Officer Peggy Park, and I mourn the loss of Martin E. Grossman.

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