Published On: Mon, Mar 7th, 2011

A tale of two Shelbys

It appears to be okay for an individual who was part owner of a company that killed a number of people through poisonous peanuts to have such deeds swept under the rug, the local media and the Police Department have advanced a full-scale assault on local deli owner, Elizabeth Winter. Ms. Winter has been charged with prostitution, in what has been claimed as a sting operation. What is not being written about is that Ms. Winter is not someone who lives in a bad neighborhood, peddles drugs, and endangering lives everywhere. Ms. Winter, or Cissy, as she is known, actually was a well-reared individual. Her father possessed an engineering degree and her mother had a double master’s degree in child psychology and history. Her mother also owned her own business for 33 years, known as a restaurant called the Winter House. Cissy grew up with immaculate manners and was acquainted with the country club atmosphere.

While a lawyer in town was known to have been indicted by a grand jury for money laundering but was not processed, so the system goes…for some. Same country club, same folks, different rules. Lawyers, lawmen, doctors, teachers, and others playing fast and loose with spouses that are not their own, yet, same country club, different rules. Why? Schoolteacher fired and then re-hired elsewhere in the county, even though she had sex with a male student. Thankfully for her, she was connected. Some must be punished, others protected. Why? Which is worse, being a slumlord or being an escort? Being a cheating spouse or being an escort? Being a painfully out-of-control head case in a leadership position, or being an escort? Maybe that Ambassador of manhood, John Edwards was right. Maybe there are two Americas since it seems there are two Shelbys, with two sets of rules and classes. It would be hard to reconcile in your prayers when trying to determine who’s to bless and who’s to blame. Yet, many of us righteously, albeit self-righteously, give thanks that “we aren’t like” so and so. And we are so puffed up and proud of our own importance, that we fail to see our own moral impotence. Gosh, it’s good to be us, isn’t it? I mean, in real life, that’s what really matters, isn’t it? Belonging to the right clique, the right church, the right clubs, being kin to the right families, and attending the right functions? Isn’t that how we judge people and how important they are and we are?

Why don’t we all meet somewhere, have a candlelight vigil, and hang this woman in effigy? I would wager this. As in most things that are political, I would suspect that this woman’s main crime was that she pissed off the wrong people and the plan was set in motion and the war began. She has stated herself that what she has been doing is not a recent thing, but all of a sudden, in the past few weeks, she becomes an issue? What high-minded official’s wife got word of her husband’s alleged dallying around on the side? What? You don’t think that’s possible? What’s that they say about a woman scorned? Follow the money. I mean, it’s not like there haven’t been problems in state-related jobs before regarding fraternizing and worse. Do you remember an episode at Justice Place a few years back, involving a female and an officer of the law, and the female employee’s husband and the officer got into a fight? And the DA’s office signed on the sheet that the warrant was not to be served in any way, shape or form. That is a fact, folks. Again, two Shelby’s. Why?

I’m 100% for fighting crime, but given the crime rate and issues in Cleveland County and Shelby, why were so many officers working on this arrest? Six officers to make the bust of a woman who is 5’9” and weighs a whopping 125 lbs and who has shown no propensity towards violence, when drug-related issues abound, along with false arrests in uptown buildings of tenants who are suspected of being hostage-takers, yea, prostitution should go to the top of the list, right? Indeed, the City of Pleasant Living. The All-American City. Rock and roll, hoochie coo. And the hostage issue as a result of…get this…a handwritten sign placed on the door of China Royal that the occupants were being held hostage. Yet, it was portrayed as a “false phone call”. How about false reporting or even false policing?

On Monday, February 12, 2007, officers arrested 78-year-old Thurman “Soupie” Price for the murder of Brenda Sue Brown, which happened in 1966. Price has yet to stand trial. We’ll see how quickly District Attorney Rick Shaffer moves on this particular case of prostitution in bringing it to court. Will this case move ahead of a murder trial, that was projected to have some questions answered just a few days after Mickey Parker’s body was exhumed, from the results of Parker’s granddaughter attesting to a deathbed confession made by Parker? Apparently, no evidence was found, at least, that would bear scrutiny in a court of law, so the case has been cast aside, seemingly in hopes that Price would die of known health issues, and the trial would be avoided. I realize this sounds calloused, but read the records for yourself and come up with a different conclusion. It becomes clear again, that there are two sets of laws for two classes of people. Why?

Let’s also look at the ministerial community. That’s always a nice trip. Why we even have a new case against a minister who wants to be removed from the sex offenders registry. Of course, he does. And then there’s this episode with the minister who tried to have sex with a street hooker who happened to be an undercover cop. Where’s the outrage? Are they protected or punished? What will it be? Look, I didn’t serve up this can of worms, I’m only calling attention to it. This has been going on for centuries and it’s time it stopped. No one is above anyone else around here, regardless of your status, income, kinship, or any other item you may want to bring to the table. We’re all just plain old human beings, one-act away from disgrace, but few would admit to it. No, I’m not condoning the escort deal, but neither am I condoning the behavior of those people who choose to be judge, jury, and executioner. And you know who you are.

In my opinion, in a sting operation, the police/DA/judge need only prove the intent of the defendant. Couldn’t that work both ways then? Say, the PD’s intent was to arrest the defendant of the sting, regardless? I mean, that’s why they call it a sting, right? Color this a tale of two cities…two Shelbys. If a defendant is hell-bent on doing the deed, then nothing will stop them from at least doing just that. If the PD is hell-bent on finding intent to arrest the defendant. then nothing will stop them at least from doing just that.

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