If you haven’t seen “The People v. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story” on FX you haven’t seen anything.
All the characters are back. OJ of course, Marcia Clark, Robert Shapiro, Robert Kardashian and none other than Johnnie Cochran.
Johnnie, Johnnie, Johnnie.
Johnnie Cochran: “It’s no disguise. It’s no disguise, it makes no sense. It doesn’t fit. If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit.”
That was perhaps the most memorable line from the entire 9 month saga – other than this:
Judge: “In the matter of the people of the state of California versus Orenthal James Simpson, case #BA097211 we the jury in the above entitled action find the defendant, Orenthal James Simpson, not guilty of the crime of murder. In violation of penal code section 187A. A felony on Nicole Brown Simpson a human being as charged as count 1 of the information.”
That’s when all hell broke loose.
America’s raw racial wound was ripped wide open, exposing just how differently blacks and whites could see the same evidence and come to completely opposite conclusions.
Black people, for the most part, cheered.
“I was absolutely disgusted to be honest with you, I found it to be a shock. It left my jaw hanging on the ground and I was in awe.”
What the new People v. OJ Simpson miniseries exposes, perhaps more than any other documentary or movies, is how America was also manipulated and its racial feelings played if not preyed upon by the Simpson defense team.
According to the Marcia Clark, the real prosecutor in the trial, in order appeal to a black jury, the defense team exploited the LAPD’s history of racial bias.
Defense team members admit now that they staged OJ’s home by adding photos of him with black people and took down the ones with him and white people.
Clark says she hopes the series forces people to reflect and learn.
Marcia Clark: “After all the craziness that happened in that trial, the Mark Fuhrman tapes, spewing racial slurs which was one of the awful days in my life. I think we came to a point where you couldn’t trust anything. You know what do we believe? And Johnnie said to the jury if you can’t trust the messenger, you can’t trust the message. And I really understood, and I hope that everybody can get it”
That’s a good takeaway for the issues of race today.
We must learn to have a critical eye to everything and everyone – even when you think they’re on your side – even when you think they’re against you.
Back then 70 percent of whites thought OJ was guilty.
70 percent of blacks thought he was innocent.
Now more than 50 percent of blacks now think OJ did it.
The People v OJ Simpson, showing the world that things aren’t always as they appear to be.