Knockout bill KOs logic, advances in legislature


Listen, if you’re going to propose a bill that criminalizes a “trend” in assaultive behavior and you want to single out juveniles for especially harsh treatment, you better have a more concrete response than this:

Verrengia said it was difficult to determine how many of the attacks have occurred when he was asked Monday if there was any evidence suggesting that a large number have been committed by 16- or 17-year-old offenders.

“I tried to wrap my arms around it, I tried to get statistics, but it’s very difficult to do so by virtue of the present reporting requirements by various law enforcement agencies,” he said. “. . . I think if you were to ask [victims] how many assaults have there been throughout the state of Connecticut, they would say, ‘One too many.’”

You know why he couldn’t “get statistics”? Why he tried to wrap his arms of justice around this issue and failed? I mean, if the ‘knockout game’ is such a big problem that you need to specifically legislate against it in ass-backwards ways, shouldn’t the statistics be abundant? Shouldn’t there be data flowing out your rear hole?

And yet, here we are. After I warned these folks a few weeks ago about the problems that plague their desire to criminalize the “knockout game”, they have returned, this time with an amended bill that has made it through the judiciary committee and now will head to the full legislature.

Now, to be sure, people assault each other all the time. The fact that assaults occur doesn’t mean that the knockout game is new or real or that it is a trend. It is, of course, none of those things. What it is, however, is code for racially-biased legislation.

In an attempt to shove this bill through the legislature and sate the outraged throngs of citizens who are crying out for justice and relief from this horrific trend of zero, here are the following ways that Lady Logic has been sacrificed at the altar. First, the amendment language:

(a) A person is guilty of assault in the second degree when: (6) with intent to cause serious physical injury to another person by rendering such other person unconscious, and without provocation by such other person, he causes such injury to such other person by striking such other person in the head.

First, pursuant to this amendment to the Assault in the Second Degree statute, you will now be subjected to a harsher penalty for one knockout punch than you would be if you took a baseball bat and beat the crap out of someone. Doesn’t that make a lot of sense?

Next, the proponents of the bill said that this bill should be enacted to send a message to “yewts” that “random” attacks will not be tolerated. Point me to the part of the subsection that requires that the attack be random. I’ll wait. Don’t see it? Oh. That’s because it doesn’t fucking exist.

Finally, do you know how badly they’ve destroyed logic? They’ve ruined their own bill and made it completely useless. How? Re-read the bill. What is the intent requirement in order to convict someone? That’s right. “Intent to cause serious physical injury by rendering such other person unconscious.”

Good luck proving that. Ever. I can almost guarantee that this subsection will never, ever be used because there’s no damn ‘knockout game’ and because no prosecutor can ever prove that intent.

Here it is, your moment of zen:

But Verrengia said he was seeking to make the victims of unprovoked attacks a protected class similar to how the law treats victims who are handicapped, pregnant, or blind.

“Although the victims in this case may not be legally blind, they are certainly blindsided by this sort of attack,” Verrengia said. “. . . I believe it warrants that sort of penalty.”

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