The case for an independent judiciary in the United States was highlighted last year following the incident of a U.S. “rapper” being arrested in Sweden.
The Swedish Public prosecutor, Daniel Suneson, stated that “I have today commenced criminal proceedings against three individuals suspected of assault causing actual bodily harm, having come to the conclusion that the events in question constitute a crime and despite claims of self-defense and provocation.” He was referring to arrest of three U.S. rappers who were on tour there.
If that had happened in the U.S., the result would have been predictable. Multiple groups would have immediately screamed police brutality and discrimination before any of them had checked the evidence. Politicians looking for votes in the next election would also have joined in together with entertainment stars looking to improve their following.
That’s exactly what happened in Sweden. However, the response came, not from Swedish sources, but from American ones.
President Donald Trump involved himself in the case, apparently at the behest of first lady Melania Trump, and rapper Kanye West offered to “personally vouch” for Rocky’s bail – one of the arrested rappers.
President Trump apparently then called the Prime Minister of Sweden and asked him to intervene, the U.S. entertainment industry revved up its voice and the media picked up on another juicy story and ran full ahead with it.
I wonder if it’s any coincidence that President Trump was up for re-election in 2020 and the black vote is something he is cultivating. You would think the President would have better things to do with his time but, then, everything he does is about getting re-elected. Maybe I should have said, you would think that a President should have something better to do with his time.
However, there is something far more worrying about that saga. The idea that a judicial system can be affected/diverted/compromised by politicians, media and pop stars is outrageous. We all know it happens frequently in the U.S., and little is done about it. Indeed, it seems to be treated as perfectly normal and acceptable even though it is a total subjugation of justice and the judicial system.
Sweden, however, obviously has a different concept of justice.
“A spokesperson for Mr. Lofven responded by saying that the Swedish judicial system,
prosecutors and courts were independent, the government was not allowed to influence
legal proceedings and “everyone is equal before the law”.
It would be nice to think we might learn something from Sweden.