It would be nice to say that the closing arguments for the State of Florida vs. Casey Anthony were riveting and compelling. They really weren’t since both attorneys gave their side’s versions of what happened to young Caylee. They are forced to do this since the truth will probably never come out. The mother, Casey, sits there day after day, hour by hour stoically staring either ahead or to the side seemingly with no reaction to the events in the courtroom. How does one get through thirty some days of testimony with only minimal reaction?
The discussion is always about her child who died three years ago and underlying it all is the death penalty. How does a parent listen to testimony about how their child died in all its gruesome details without even flinching? She doesn’t take any notes and rarely speaks to her attorneys speaking before the court only twice. The inactivity alone has to be grueling unless she is taking some type of downer or life has forced her in a mold not dissimilar from this. The latter theory takes credence when you recall a commentator quoting the police who interrogated Miss Anthony saying that “she was tough”. That is learned behaviour.
Her attorney, Jose Baez, made an intentional splash with his opening statement accusing George Anthony, Caylee’s grandfather, and Lee Anthony, Caylee’s uncle, of molesting Casey and possibly being the father of Caylee. It brought about much inference and implication as to their guilt and, thus, a reason for Casey to harm her child. It was a big splash that washed down the drain as the trial progressed providing no facts regarding either case. While testifying, George Anthony denied ever molesting his daughter and no one even bothered to ask Lee since his DNA had already proved he wasn’t the father. This family probably is dysfunctional but so are most families. No one lives the life of the Nelsons. In the fifties when “The Ozzie and Harriet Show” aired, families didn’t live in continuous harmony and they don’t now.
Like inference and implication, dysfunction is not a reason for murder. In fact, there are only a few narrowly defined situations where unpunished murder can occur. Casey’s case doesn’t fall under any of those situations. Possibly, it was an accidental death; possibly, it was a premeditated murder; possibly, Casey is guilty; possibly, not. That is what the juror’s will be deciding over the next week or so. I don’t envy them their job since sitting in judgment of another human being is the thing of nightmares. Having never sat on a jury, it’s hard to say what they will decide, but with the paucity of the defense’s case, it can’t be that difficult. We’ll see.
Postscript: After this was written, a verdict was announced after approximately ten hours of deliberation. Casey Marie Anthony was found not guilty of all counts except lying to the police. Unfortunately, two-year-old Caylee is still dead.