Posted by: kristabella | October 20, 2006

Swift Judicial Kick in the Ass – Part One

I know we live in a great country. Please, can you imagine me in Afghanistan? I love the freedom of speech, right to trial by jury, reality TV, doughnuts, deep dish Chicago style pizza, yada, yada, yada.

But I have a serious issue with our judicial system as it is today. Justice is Blind my ass!

Let’s get a bit of background here. I’ve been to court twice in my life, both times traffic courts and both times for speeding tickets. (Look……I seriously think my right foot is a lot heavier than people think! Like as heavy as lead or something) Anywho, both times I had valid excuses for going. I mean, I’m not going to waste precious PTO time for court. Pah-lease!

Today will explore Why the Judicial System Hates Kristin Part One, which was a speeding ticket. In downtown Oakland, CA. At midnight. OAKLAND, people! This shady car started tailing me and was pulling next to me, totally kind of scaring the burritos I ate earlier out of me. (Did I mention I was in downtown Oakland, CA???) So, I sped up to get around him/them/aliens/rapists/killas. It was late and I wanted to get the hell home to the safety of the South Bay and quiet, innocent, not downtown-Oakland-at-all-peaceful-and-quaint-Los Gatos.

Turns out it was an unmarked police car. Narcotics cops. (Seriously? There wasn’t ANY other crime going on at that time of night? Riiiight) Who lectured ME about speeding and then proceeded to treat me like a CRIMINAL. Shining light in my face, walking around my car. Could they not tell I wasn’t from these parts? My license clearly stated I was from 50 miles down 880!

Anyway, a few days later back at work I told my horror story, complete with fainting spells and excessive exaggeration about how bad I was mistreated. (Woeis me.) Our security director was an ex-cop who first lectured me for stopping for an unmarked car in OAKLAND and didn’t I hear the stories about the people who pulled over for fake cops and got raped and killed????  (WHA?!?!) Ex-cop told me to fight it (which I planned on doing anyway since I had gotten a speeding ticket a few months before and was therefore no longer eligible for traffic school, but THAT is beside the point.)

So I go. Drive ALL the way back up to Oakland again, where I never wanted to go again unless the A’s were home and this clearly wasn’t baseball season, and sit in court all morning. I’m of course the last to “present” my case. I go after numerous people who are either A) driving without a license, B) driving without insurance or C) driving their kids around with NO CAR SEATS! And he’s letting them go….pay a fine, show proof, put kids in a safety device, blah, blah, blah. (Brain: We’re so money! No way he’s NOT going to let us off. I mean, seriously the HORROR at what could have happened!)

But the judge? Doesn’t even look me in the eye and treats me like I’M wasting HIS time! Him – Pay the fine, smack the gavel, on your way. Me – stand there, gaping mouth, Whaaaaaat?

Moral of the story? Apparently it’s quite OK and legal to drive without a license and insurance or with your kids on your lap (see Britney Spears) You’re golden. And also? Never, ever, ever drive through Oakland. At night. Unless you’re on your way to like Orinda, or something.

Up next: Part Two of Why That Judicial Branch Is SO Out to Get Me

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