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Daily Archive for Saturday, April 7th, 2007

Dred Scott!!

five til two, ames courtroom filling, run into ken starr coming in the door who gets me in without necessity of a badge, sitting in the back by the control booth, six video cameras operating in the room, five on tripods, one on shoulder, good looking guy walks by with a colorful cylindrical cap. diane lucas walks across the room in front of the table set to seat all the judges. ogletree talks to paul at the podium getting the sound and mic check. this is a helluva show. i didn’t know elena kagan was the charles hamilton houston professor of law. elena tells us about charles. zimmerman has the hero of tulsa stand up, 104 year old otis smith, charisma. zimmerman is from the lawfirm that has its name on this event, bingham mccutcheon, and its money behind it. Charles Hamilton Jr. tells us tree’s rhetorical strategy as. tree extends it by giving awards, elena his award-holder, strands of interweaving rhetoric, giving each other awards after award. this is a helluva show. complete with paparazzi, flash wiley, john henry. tree tells us the four witnesses we will hear and the four lawyers we will hear and he introduces the nine judges, steve breyer to preside.

so okay, we are called to order, the proceeding begins. but it doesn’t. instead steve breyer makes a speech. why would a presiding judge do this before the argument begins. he’s says he’s eager to hear what the experts have to say. hmmm

how to make an argument. what a wonderful array. how hard it is to be real in the moment of argument, to be easy, to engage the judges and hold them, to start out telling a story and tell it well, in stride, with give and take. how do you use your moment at the podium to draw them in. ken starr is woofs names at them. amar is words on words with spirit.

what is this case about. i heard it. assertion from on high that black people can’t be equal, racist rally cry, spirit of white supremacy, in your face.

suddenly they are talking about finding arguments to support the line of thinking that will get them to the result they want.

starrblows his opportunity to sit down at the one minute mark in a hot room in which folks have been sitting for three hours. just heard the word unconscionable. hmmm. i had to get up and go pee. watched a bit of the q&a on the screen down below in the overflow room. dynomite. better than in the room for real. can see the faces, feel the cut back and forth. harry edwards has fun with him. ken has some fun right back. finally a break. larry watson sings, says it all. this is about black people rising, white holding down.

now the judges. damon keith says its the meanness of taney’s language that has rippled down through the ages. nice guy with a beard who asks great questions says the ripple was tsunami, denial of a rebellion within the white race against its domination over black. this is still the issue, connection to tulsa and greensboro. to black, are you ready to rise. to white are you ready to cede.

why would taney assert that blacks could never be citizens? what function did this serve? so unlike what judges should be doing, it created stain says harry edwards we are still trying to remove. what’s your strategy harry? breyer i-agrees, tough spot going last, that’s why my sayings never work says he to bail himself out, like the time he said “i’ve got tenure” to follow up a gaff. how do you persuade people who think differently? then he goes into such a story, terrible what missouri is doing, about a clash between taney and curtis who can’t get it together so part to extremes. lessons, be careful too many too fast.

i want to see the video, want to cut it into clips, want to animate a bit of it in second life, want to shape the bits to lessons.

now tree with net results, 26yes 13not. he calls more names and brings folk forward, true to the end in considerate good humor, giving, thanking. this is tree’s way to talk about race, one nation with liberty and justice for all.

how can we rise above. how can we use the generativity of the net to create a vastly expanded rhetorical space which dissolves the bitterness of fact and fear of white domination over black.

damon keith calls it. this gathering and focus and expression is amazing. standing o for ogletree. he has made his strategy a dynamic work of learning art.