I’ve written on this before. The Sackler family, sole owners of Purdue Pharma, creators and promoters of OxtContin, is rounding the final turn in this current miscarriage of what we have come to accept as justice. They’re headed down the home stretch.
There will be no jail time.
There will be no murder charges.
There won’t be a goddamn thing, even though they knowingly murdered over 400,000 Americans in the coldest of blood and for no other reason than profit.
And the killing continues. The song is over, but the melody lingers on.
Why? Because they’re worth billions and we Americans don’t send our billionaires to jail
We send poor people to jail under the three-strikes law. That piece of unique ‘justice’ has thousands serving life sentences—life in prison—for stealing items worth less than a hundred bucks a third time.
How about stealing the lives of 400,000 of our citizens? Three times and your out, but 400,000 times and you walk away free. Not only walk away free. Walk away with the $10 billion profit in your pocket, made by addicting and killing. Four ounces of cocaine? Send ‘em to the slammer. However many bottles of OxyContin? Send ‘em to Florida for the winter.
Bernie Madoff ran a Ponzi scheme and got life in prison.
A stupid Ponzi scheme that victimized his wealthy friends and greedy hangers-on. An economic fraud that lost a bunch of folks money—some of them their life savings, but it was a fucking economic crime. No one died. No one was addicted on purpose because it was profitable.
There are scum in this world we inhabit and there are those who are worse than scum. O.J. Simpson was scum, but he only killed a single person and beat a murder charge. But we all know he’s a murderer.
The death of a single person is a tragedy. The death of 400,000 is a news event.
Do you know who said that? Joseph Stalin, the Soviet dictator who murdered millions of his own people. Stalin was and is reviled throughout the world and yet he died peacefully in his bed. But he had control of a ruthless governmental machine in a country that was accustomed to purges, killings in the night and disappearances at the hands of the secret police.
The Sackler family has no such power over government.
What they do have is power over the American system of justice. They have the money to move justice in their direction. How on earth did they get that power?
The Sackler family gained the power to escape any remote sense of justice because we gave it to them
We allowed Simpson to go free. We allowed the banksters and Wall Street crooks to get off the hook. We stood by in silence as the homeless slept on doorsteps and under bridges, the mentally ill were discharged into the streets and our kids were pauperized by universities simply to get an education.
We sovereign citizens, you and I, raised not even the most modest complaint when our industrial strength was chop shopped off to Asia. Those made jobless were vilified for being out of work—lazy sons-of-bitches who deserved neither compensation nor compassion because they were not us. The poor, particularly the black and Hispanic poor were hustled off the streets into prisons. Because they were criminals? No, because they were unsightly and our racism embarrassed us.
We turned our backs on Justice and, being blindfolded, she hardly noticed
Because justice must be fought for and died for, honored and cultivated like the finest of gardens. If justice is not a garden, what would you make of her? Left to the ravages of drought and infestations, is it any wonder she no longer blooms?
You may think this is too angry an opinion on my part. Perhaps not suitable writing (or reading) for those who look to the more optimistic aspects of life in America. But you see, I am of a certain age where I no longer blush to call a crook a crook, no longer shy away from naming and shaming murder when I see it and don’t give a damn for the feelings of those who would profit from our downfall.
Truth be told, I am not nearly angry enough.
Image: Sang Hyun Cho