By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
In one of the four cases, the defendant, a first-time offender, had been on drugs since he was eight. Pickering gave him a sentence light enough to let him get rehabilitation services in prison. The black defendant's lawyer said "this may have been a positive life-changing experience" for his client.
"Why anyone would go the whole nine yards, and then some, to get a lighter sentence for a convicted cross burner is beyond me . . . in a state with Mississippi's sad history of race relations. It's simply mind-boggling."
Says Reuben Anderson, the first black Supreme Court justice in Mississippi, formerly with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund: "I have known Pickering for at least a quarter of a century. [He is] extremely fair and impartial to all the parties." Any apology to Pickering from Schumer? Look for pie in the sky.
Next week: It all comes out inThe Atlanta Journal-Constitution.