Patterico's Pontifications


Constitutional Vanguard: Why Did a Judge Say the People Kyle Rittenhouse Shot Cannot Be Called “Victims”? Part One

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:17 pm

The latest Constitutional Vanguard newsletter addresses the story you might have read yesterday in which the judge in the Kyle Rittenhouse murder trial said the shooting victims cannot be called, well, “victims” . . . but they can be called “rioters” or “looters.”

Evidence of bias? Maybe! But as I point out, such rulings are not that unusual.

I’m splitting this one up into two parts. Tonight, in Part One, I describe the issue, talk about the ways that judges can influence trials out of bias, and the institutional incentives that can cause judges to favor the defense in their rulings. Here’s a taste:

If a judge tells a prosecutor to pound sand, and that the court won’t be recessing the trial for the afternoon or for a day to allow the prosecution to get a critical witness to court, the prosecution has no recourse. None. The prosecution can’t appeal that decision. They can’t run off to the Court of Appeal and seek a writ. They are quite simply, as the saying goes, up a creek.

And so it is with most evidentiary rulings. If the judge makes a bad call and excludes clearly admissible evidence favoring the prosecution, the prosecution gets no appeal. If the prosecution loses the case as a result, that’s just too damn bad. Double jeopardy has kicked in and the defendant cannot be tried again. But the defendant can appeal all manner of rulings if there is a conviction, including exclusion of evidence, improper jury instructions . . . you name it.

I’m doing this one for the paid subscribers, mainly because it gives me a greater comfort level to write for a more loyal audience when I am writing about my profession. This will be especially so in Part Two, where I will tell some war stories about dumb/crazy rulings by judges . . . mostly from other people’s cases.

Access the post here. Subscribe here.

Lesbians Being Pilloried for Refusing Sex with “Women” Who Turn Out to Have Male Equipment

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am


“I’ve had someone saying they would rather kill me than Hitler,” says 24-year-old Jennie*.

“They said they would strangle me with a belt if they were in a room with me and Hitler. That was so bizarrely violent, just because I won’t have sex with trans women.”

Jennie is a lesbian woman. She says she is only sexually attracted to women who are biologically female and have vaginas. She therefore only has sex and relationships with women who are biologically female.

Jennie doesn’t think this should be controversial, but not everyone agrees. She has been described as transphobic, a genital fetishist, a pervert and a “terf” – a trans exclusionary radical feminist.

“There’s a common argument that they try and use that goes ‘What if you met a woman in a bar and she’s really beautiful and you got on really well and you went home and you discovered that she has a penis? Would you just not be interested?'” says Jennie, who lives in London and works in fashion.

“Yes, because even if someone seems attractive at first you can go off them. I just don’t possess the capacity to be sexually attracted to people who are biologically male, regardless of how they identify.”

My question is: why is this an issue only for lesbians? If society is forced to accept the notion that “trans women” are women in every sense, why isn’t a guy who takes a woman home to have sex, but balks upon finding out that the “woman” has a penis, a horrible transphobic monster?

I wonder how the trans community would respond. The more sensible ones would probably affirm that everyone is allowed to have sex or refuse sex with any consensual adult partner they like. But if you were ready to have sex and changed your mind only because of what you found when you undressed your prospective sex partner, aren’t you a terrible bigot by today’s standards?

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