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Friday, October 3, 2008

O.J. may finally go to jail

Creepy guy.

Comments (13)

Of all the topics I have written on for late night TV none had the explosive power with the audience like O.J. It's what I call the pandemonium joke where the audience laughs and then sounds like they're going to riot.
It was also the closest turnaround time for me personally: Jokes written at 2:30 based on a line at the trial were playing on the East Coast 6 hours later.
The joke I'm thinking of involved the time Judge Ito took the jury to the circus - he really did. My joke was that when the man came out with a shovel after the elephants, the jury thought it was Johnny Cochran starting his closing argument. The laugh was strong but the buzz afterwards was almost dangerous. It was a pandemonium joke.
You know who also was in the mix down there? My buddy John Callahan - Judge Ito cited one of his cartoons and it's in the official transcript of the trial.

Ahh, what a sad, horrible wretched chapter for America. Nothing good came out of that. Nothing.

You know what detail I just thought of? Remember when they played the messages from Ron Goldman's friends calling his answering machine hoping the news was incorrect and he'd pick up? For some reason, that haunts me tonight.

Bill wrote: Nothing good came out of that. Nothing.

Maybe, but maybe he's wrong. Although OJ may be a despicable waste of human flesh, some positive things may have followed that embarrassing spectacle they called a murder trial.

Maybe the police began to be a little more careful about how they gathered and catalogued evidence. Especially DNA evidence that could send someone to prison for life.

Maybe the police are more likely today to always tell the truth on the stand, for fear of being publicly proved a liar like Mark Furhman.

Maybe the N word became even less acceptable for anyone to use, any time.

Maybe domestic violence victims were given a public stage not previously available to them. In turn, it may of saved the life of others before they too became a statistic.

Bill, maybe the murder victim's deaths won't haunt you as much if you can really believe some good came out of it. Keep up the humor coming though, we need to laugh now more than ever.

PS... remember this one.

Q: Did you hear that the prosecution has moved to change the venue of the OJ trial?
A: They wanted to move the trial to a place where no one knows football. They chose Houston.

I just don't understand why he didn't retain the services of Johnnie Cochran or Bob Kardashian again.

wait, they're what?

I get the impression lots of people feel that the OJ trial made a mockery of the jutice system since it was on TV and he was a celebrity.

Some years ago there was a murder trial in west Texas that involved a rich white oil man that was far more questionable. Along the way there was an attempt on the judge's life and a bunch of other shenanigans. It just didn't make TV and the defendent wasn't a celeb. He got off and now is a preacher or something similar.


Everyone deserves the presumption of innocence as their trial begins. OJ certainly deserved no less, and he received it.

I followed the OJ murder trial very closely and felt there was sufficient evidence to conclude that he killed his ex-wife and Ron Goldman. The jury disagreed, and the defense team (frequently aided by Judge Ito) provided them with plenty of reasons to consider the evidence tainted or planted. A subsequent jury (with a lower burden of proof) found O.J. guilty in a civil trial.

If you don't believe that O.J. murdered Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman you must embrace the theory that police officers and detectives conspired to plant evidence at O.J.'s residence and car and that they lied (repeatedly) under oath in an attempt to frame an innocent man.

Given OJs previous acts of domestic violence, and his increasingly bizarre behavior following the murder trial, I am 99.9% certain that he got away with two murders.

That said, I'm always polite (and shocked) win I learn a friend at work, or somebody I meet at a party, still believes that OJ was framed, or that his not guilty verdict represented an acquittal. More often than not, those who express their opinions are not white skinned (though I have met two). Clearly, the "OJ was framed" crowd holds our criminal justice system in much lower esteem than I ever thought possible. I'm sure Tenskey can explain why.
OJ was found not guilty by the jury, but I will always consider his case as the high water mark for "guilt not proven".

One of the things I resented most about the trial is the one lawyer who kept saying how quickly people had assumed O.J. was guilty. Frankly, I always loved O.J. and it took a long time before I believed it on a rational level - much less an emotional one. I thought I knew the guy from comedies like Police Story and ads with Hertz. I couldn't believe you could show so much greatness on the football field and be that uncool. I always thought the one L.A. detective made a devastating point when he said he called O.J. in Chicago and told him his wife was dead, and O.J. didn't ask how. O.J. knew how.

The phrase that I think captures the feelings of a lot of people is that they could not bring themselves to believe O.J. had done it.

I had a friend who was completely on O.J.'s side based on some unfortunate experiences my friend had had with the police and we used to talk about the trial almost daily. It was riveting stuff. Think of all the writers who have tried to get an audience emotionally involved in a story. Well, people cared about this like nothing I can remember. They would even say, "I'm not following it that closely" before giving a complete recap of the way laundry soap could affect the DNA testing of blood in socks, etc....People were mesmerized by this. And I still say the slow Bronco chase broadcast during an NBA Finals game - with the public out on freeway overpasses interacting with O.J. - was in the top 3 weird scenes in the history of Los Angeles. And that is saying something.

Maybe some good came out of it. Maybe we learned a lot as a nation about race and celebrity justice. I know I learned a lot about lawyers and the system. But most of what we learned, I had a pretty good understanding of already. My main feeling was a deep chill in my guts thinking about O.J. actually doing this. I still believe he was hopped up on drugs. I always believed that comment Robert Shapiro was supposed to have had made about not underestimating the effects of certain drugs. (I actually met Robert Shapiro one time in Los Angeles and that really brought the reality home a little more.)

I know they gave O.J. some serious drugs when he got to jail so he could deal with the aftershock. I always thought that was questionable. What if these drugs helped O.J. get over it and start blocking out the grief? Later I saw O.J. for what he was and realized he was most upset not at what he had done but at making this much trouble for himself, although the horror of it was definitely replaying in his head.

Incidentally, my friend who was a staunch O.J. supporter eventually changed his mind after O.J. said in the civil trial that he would never wear those "ugly-ass" Italian shoes that left the blood prints at the crime scene, and then they found the Buffalo magazine from years before when he was wearing those exact shoes. That was what did it for a lot of people. What a profoundly ugly story. One thing was clear from the beginning: This was a crime of intense rage and that usually means the killer knew the victims. All the fame and glory and riches and O.J. couldn't handle breaking up with Nicole. Rest in peace, Nicole - it looks like the guy who slashed you and Ron Goldman to death is finally going to prison.

It will be interesting to see Dominick Dunne's take on the trial and verdict. Dunne is fighting cancer at the age of 82, so covering this trial might be his last big hurrah. I assume Vanity Fair will publish his piece in next month's edition.


Of all the topics I have written on for late night TV none had the explosive power with the audience like O.J. It's what I call the pandemonium joke where the audience laughs and then sounds like they're going to riot...

Do I remember correctly that for a time Leno wasn't legally permitted to make jokes about OJ because he was a witness or something and he actually had guest comics on to deliver some of those lines?

You're thinking of the more recent Michael Jackson case. Leno had been contacted by the people in the case so he was under the judge's gag order.
He would bring out a celebrity to tell the jokes, and though I can't remember the joke right now, I can say that I've had one of my jokes delivered by Roseanne.

On CNN last night,,,
"OJ will get a minimum of 15 years for the kidnapping and at least 1 year each for the other 11 counts, making the 26 or more essentially a life sentence.

If you don't believe that O.J. murdered Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman you must embrace the theory that police officers and detectives conspired to plant evidence at O.J.'s residence and car and that they lied (repeatedly) under oath in an attempt to frame an innocent man.

That shouldnt be too much of a stretch for people here in Portland, the way they feel about cops...

I'm confident Mark Fuhrman and others wouldn't have framed Simpson or planted evidence against him unless they thought he was probably guilty.

oj got framed!! everyone is out to get the jice. has anyone looked into what nicole and ron were up to??? DRUG DEALERS!!! Look into who they owed monet to

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