So I hear some ball boy shot himself in the leg in a Manhattan night club by accident. They filed charges against him, and now he’s at the NYPD with his high-dollar lawyer, turning himself in.
Now, New York has a law called the Sullivan Act, which makes it a dreadful offense to possess and carry a pistol in the city, unless you are one of the Anointed who get a discretionary carry permit from the NYPD. (If you’re not Donald Trump, Howard Stern, or Bobby DeNiro, your chances on that front are slim to non-existent.) The law provides for a mandatory year in jail for possessing or carrying an unlicensed handgun in NYC.
How much time do you think the famous ball boy will do?
If one of the unwashed proles were charged with the same offense, he wouldn’t be allowed to go home, consult with his lawyer, and then turn himself in voluntarily. But when you get paid a hojilion dollars a year for throwing a pigskin around, not only do you get preferential, nay, deferential treatment, but you also get to afford a high-dollar lawyer who will get the charge dismissed or lowered to a negligible misdemeanor.
His lawyer opines thusly:
"My hope is that it plays out well and he can continue his career, because he’s a good person I think, with a brilliant athletic career. And it would be a terrible sadness if an isolated incident could ruin a life," said Brafman.
Of course, if you’re a pipefitter or network administrator, and you got busted on the subway for carrying a snubby to keep your hide safe during the late-evening commute, nobody in charge of NYC’s law enforcement or legal system would give a shit about an “isolated incident ruining a life”, even though an NFL superstar can financially weather a year in the pokey much better than most other folks.
The hallmarks of an unjust law are ill-defined standards and selective enforcement, and the Sullivan Law is definitely a prime example of an unjust law. It gives the police the power to crack down on the peasants, while giving them leeway to make exceptions for the nobility.