Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Overcoming my fears

I woke up a bit late this morning but I was able to get dressed, eat breakfast, and get to class in a reasonable amount of time. It's nice how the class is becoming more united but very sad because the end is really close! Here are descriptions of the cases we went over today. They either dealt with 4th amendment violations or the death penalty. 
  • Miranda v. Arizona - An 18-year-old woman was kidnapped and raped. Police arrested Ernesto A. Miranda, a 23 year old who suffered from extreme poverty, had a 9th grade education, and was later diagnosed as schizophrenic. The rape victim identified Miranda as her attacker, and after a 2 hour interrogation by the police, Miranda confessed to the crime and wrote out a statement. However, Miranda's attorneys claimed that his confession was coerced by the police during the interrogation process.
  • Gideon v. Wainwright - Gideon was a rambler that was in and out of jail. He was convicted of breaking and entering into a poolroom in Florida. He claimed to be too poor to afford an attorney and requested one. The judge refused. Gideon served a 5 year sentence but mailed a petition. Before this case, it had been decided that only "special cases" could receive an attorney if they were too poor to afford one. Gideon's petition overturned this.
  • Furman v. Georgia - William Furman was sentenced to death for murder. His attorney appealed to the Supreme Court, who struck down Georgia's law for imposing capital punishment. Justice Brennan dissented, stating that the death penalty treats people like non-humans, is arbitrary, unacceptable in modern times, excessive, and not needed. 
  • McClesky v. Kemp - Mr. McClesky, a black man, was convicted of two counts of armed robbery and one of murder. The S.C. affirmed his conviction and sentences. However, he filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus.
  • Payne v. Tennessee - Mr. Payne, a borderline retarded man, was waiting on his girlfriend to return after a day of work. He went out and did cocaine and got very drunk. When he went across the hall of her apartment complex, he tried to make sexual advances on a woman and she refused. In response, Mr. Payne stabbed her 84 times with a butcher knife, killing her from a mass loss of blood. He then killed her 2 year old daughter and stabbed her 3 year old son, but he survived. Mr. Payne was arrested after a neighbor reported him and he left the building covered in blood. At the trial, the prosecutor asked the judge to impose the death sentence and the judge did.
  • Why do we punish? - The government punishes criminals to deter the guilty, deter everyone else from committing these heinous crimes, and to impose retribution (two wrongs make a right) in terms of the death penalty.
After class I went to John Jay. I've been trying to eat more healthy so I'll post a picture of what I ate as proof:
Salad with lots of carrots, slabs of bread, and chips...I tried 
NO I did not eat her, I just felt the need to throw in a picture of Talya and I after class (:
The afternoon session was nice. We took our last quiz, which I got an A on. I feel like I've really progressed in this class. We then played constitutional jeopardy, and my team came in second. After class, we had a meeting with Ms. L. Instead of having dinner in John Jay, Aurea, Morvarid, Tomi, Brittany, and I decided to go to a Japanese restaurant a block away from campus for dinner (I gave up on trying to eat healthy). I really like Japanese food because it's very flavorful and the portions are lighter than Chinese food.

Morvarid's Bento Box
Happy selfie of me before getting my food
Vegetable fried rice
Pork pan seared gyoza
After dinner, I rested in the dorms before the Columbia HSP Talent Show! I signed up to be a performer. Tomi accompanied me and I was very happy that she came. I wrote a poem about interracial love and was happy and relieved at the applause I received. I've never been a fan of public speaking but this was a fun exercise. The Talent Show was really fun; there was dancing, singing, a yo-yo performance, poetry, and a wonderful tap-dance performance from my floormate Zoey!

My floormate Emma and I; she did stand-up comedy!
We certainly do
After the talent show, Tomi and I went to Butler Library to accompany Aurea while she worked on her paper. Looking at all the research books about United States presidents made me really miss AP United States History.
Aurea working
Tomorrow we find out our debate topics - we only have one day to prepare! Since I wrote the opening statement last time for my group, I'm going to try to get a lighter subject, hopefully writing and delivering questions. Whatever it is, I'm ready for the challenge, no matter what the outcome will be.

No comments:

Post a Comment