Yesterday, Brad Spangler, Director of the Center for a Stateless Society, tagged me in a Facebook note about the murder of Oscar Grant. Brad’s comments were made after Johannes Mehserle, the police officer responsible for killing Grant, was convicted of ‘involuntary manslaughter’ rather than ‘second degree murder.’
Here’s what Brad had to say:
It is my opinion that Johannes Mehserle is responsible for the wrongful death of Oscar Grant. Grant was not quite 23 years old. Even working only entry level jobs, he had a lifetime earning potential of at least $1 million ahead of him. Due to the special circumstances of his death, damages ought to be at least triple that. Mehserle, IMO, PERSONALLY owes at least $3 million dollars to the heirs of Oscar Grant — minimum.
Brad, like many libertarians (myself included), believes that true justice is about compelling criminals to make restitution to victims of crime, not punishing criminals. Elsewhere, Brad has written that
Punishment of any kind is not justice. Justice is best understood as compelling the criminal (forcibly if necessary) to make restitution to the victim. If the victim has been killed, restitution should go to the kin, associates and (if applicable) insurance company.
Darian Worden (also of C4SS) published a full-length article about the shooting of Grant which can be read here.