Thursday, September 24, 2015

Legal beagles

Lawyers get paid fat sums of money to advocate for their clients. Everyone understands this.

But sometimes they make you want to pull their Armani suit coats over their heads and start feeding them knuckle hoagies, kind of like Dave “The Hammer” Schultz used to do to all those poor dopes from Winnipeg and Buffalo.

Maybe you missed it, more likely you didn’t, but the other day a man named Mack Breed resigned his position as assistant football coach at John Jay High School in San Antonio, a school which may sound vaguely familiar. Mostly that’s because two of its players, Michael Moreno and Victor Rojas, starred in the most viral of videos, in which a high school official named Robert Watts was viciously attacked from behind at the snap of the ball.

 Moreno and Rojas were the perpetrators. Breed was the assistant coach  who allegedly put them up to it, although he claims now he never expressly told them to hit Watts.

If you stop right there, this is still one of the more disgusting things you’ve ever heard. But it doesn’t stop there.

Now come the lawyers, or lawyer: James Reeves, retained by Breed to make him look like good by any means necessary. And when we say “by any means necessary,” that’s exactly what we mean. Reeves’ solution was to absolve his client, the alleged grownup in this whole business, and pin the entire mess on the kids, Moreno and Rojas – particularly Moreno. In Reeves’ version the two kids (particularly Moreno) are miserable little creeps who threw his client under the bus by saying, quite
reasonably, that, hey, he’s the coach. And Coach knows best.

Reeves was having none of it.

"During his media tour, Michael Moreno resorted to the historical defense of  'I was just following orders’,” Reeves said. “However, we are all responsible for our own actions, and his defense will fail in this situation as it has failed in the past. Moreno paints himself as a saint on television while withholding the truth that shows how out of control he was in that game. Moreno fails to mention that he was not ejected after striking the referee. He stood by while an innocent black player, Trenton Hobdy, was wrongfully ejected for Moreno's hit on the referee. Moreno followed the hit on Watts by committing another flagrant foul on the very next play. The Marble Falls High School quarterback kneeled in a victory formation, the whistle was blown, and then Moreno hit the kneeling quarterback. His behavior is exactly what one would expect from a rogue player blaming a coach for the player's actions.”

In other words: This kid’s a sociopath. He’s a thug. He’s a goon. He’s a crime spree waiting to happen.

Only one thing wrong with that.

If Moreno was so out of control, why didn’t the grownup in the situation – Breed – try to calm him down instead of inciting him?

That’s what grownups are supposed to do, but Breed didn’t do it. In fact, he was apparently as out of control as the kids, shouting at Watts from the sideline, setting the tone for everything. Even if he didn’t expressly tell Moreno and Rojas to hit Watts, he certainly gave the impression he wouldn’t
have a problem with it.

Yet what happened is all on the kids, not the grownups.

In a word, nonsense. No matter how enthusiastically Reeves picks on a couple of children, they were following orders, or at least what they perceived to be the orders. And that is a legitimate defense, given the power  high school coaches wield over their charges. And so the greater responsibility falls on Breed, whose primary job as a coach is to set the proper example.

In the end, he failed at that.

Shame on his lawyer for trying to turn that around. Speaking of, you know, disgusting.

No comments:

Post a Comment