Jury Guilty Grace

James Marquis, convicted of child abuse

Sometimes a three word image search brings up a sea of faces.   I was not really surprised that the first several pages of results were of television’s Nancy Grace and lots of folks whose trials she covered.       I actually scrolled down a bit before coming across this image of convicted child abuser James Marquis in Missouri.    Marquis was convicted of forcing his ten year old daughter to stand in a corner for ten hours a day.    He was also found in possession of child pornography.

What is frightening is that Marquis looks so ordinary.   Like a guy you might see standing in line at Walmart or cheering on the sidelines at a little league game.   It’s scary that child abusers don’t have some scarlet letter A tattooed on their foreheads.   And that is life itself in a nutshell.   Things often are not what they appear to be.  You rarely really know the people around you.   A friend who had seemed steadfast and true may one day prove to be not a friend at all.     You may discover that someone you have loved and trusted really is not lovable nor trustworthy.

I find myself thinking today that so much of what we come to rely upon and count on is actually quite fleeting.   Always, it seems,  life will surprise you and it may well be impossible to tell the good guys from the bad guys without a score card.   People set so much store in appearances,  which can be deceiving,  even when no deceit is intended.     I’ve come to think that the only solution is to trust your gut,  and to back off whenever someone sets off alarm bells in your head.   Fallible as one’s judgement may be,  there really isn’t anything else.   Unless and until, of course,  Hawthorne’s branding scheme for criminals comes to pass.

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13 comments on “Jury Guilty Grace

      • I agree with you both. Our actions don’t always match our real values or intentions, either – if they did, most of us would be far better parents, better friends, more diligent workers, just better PEOPLE, overall. But when someone’s actions consistently belie their words, or are in irreconcilable conflict with their stated values, it’s time to back away – quickly, rather than slowly.

  1. There should be no simple profile for criminals. Anyone is capable of bad things, especially they could hide behind computer screen.

  2. If your first encounter with the CNN celebrity time-waster was on DWTS you might have “Grace Showing Style”. If you watch her so-called program, it might be “Grace Being Hateful”. As you said…

    … and of course this is why if you really want to try very hard to keep weapons or other nasty things off a plane, you can’t exclude Grandma and toddlers. We have apparently decided as a society that we’d rather be blown up by a 2-year-old than to hassle any of them.

    I understand — but I hope everyone else understands we’ve decided to accept this tradeoff.

    • I have to confess that I have never once watched Ms. Grace– my huzband and I have a firm policy of not watching any television news. She certainly has a reputation. As for airline security, it pains me that we have been so quick to give up our civil rights for what is really “security theater” that does much to de-humanize and inconvenience ordinary passengers, and does very little to keep planes safe up in the air.

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