Gerald Stanley, Colten Boushie, and Justice

February 12, 2018

So episode 72 – a new record.  But you know that right? Because you subscribe to the show on iTunes and have already rated and reviewed the podcast – right? You should.

Not a fun episode this week.

On Friday Gerald Stanley was acquitted of murdering Colten Boushie. People are often acquitted of serious crimes but this case was different. Boushie was a young indigenous man. Stanley was a white farmer. Boushie’s friends said that they had some car trouble and went to the Stanley farm for help. Then, they say, Stanley murdered Boushie – for no real reason. Stanley said that Boushie was trying to steal some of his property and he accidentally shot him. So the best case scenario is that a white farmer shot a young indigenous man over some property.

But there was more to the story. The night Boushie was killed the RCMP treated his family like they had done something wrong.  In the aftermath of the killing “rural crime” – a dog whistle for indigenous people – was a hot topic in the Canadian Prairie. And then as the trial began the Stanley defence team used their peremptory jury challenges to exclude every potential indigenous juror.

An all white jury acquitted a white farmer of killing an indigenous youth.

There was justifiable outrage and questions about racial bias in the justice system,

The Prime Minister and the Minister of Justice tweeted their outrage and sadness.  Those tweets also attracted scrutiny – the government should not be commenting on the outcomes of individual court cases. The government should take action to fix problems in the justice system but so far the Trudeau Government has chosen tweets over legislation.

This week we break down the Stanley verdict, talk about the jury selection process, and look at what can be done to make sure there is justice in the justice system.

We also have some new art – it is still new because it is way easier to just copy and past this section each week – from an awesome young designer Parker Mazerolle – serious he is crazy good – go check out his work.

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Emilie Taman on Twitter: @EmilieTaman

Michael Spratt on Twitter: @mspratt

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