The People Vs. OJ Simpson

The People Vs. OJ Simpson

The 9 things I learned watching the OJ Simpson Trial and American Crime Story.

1. Money Can Buy Everything

The first couple of episodes, you see OJ getting the absolute best lawyer, Bobby Shapiro. He is basically the attorney for all celebrities. Having the best lawyer made him able to negotiate OJ turning himself in, which led to the infamous car chase in the Bronco. He was able to buy the “Dream Team” which made him win. Only money can buy you that. An average person would have lost.

2. The Dream Team Wasn't A Dream

When Shapiro hired Johnnie Cochran, he really didn’t want to. Shapiro was probably one of the most egotistic human beings out there. Then he added another egotistic man, Johnnie Cochran. Shapiro hired a lot of other lawyers that, to me, are not that bad because they never made me yell at my TV. Anyway, seeing Johnnie and Bobby Shapiro interact was like watching college boys compete with each other to see who is stronger. It was what some people call, "a pissing contest." At some points during the trial, they forgot why they were even there because they were so wrapped up in trying to outshine the other. Johnnie Cochran, during one of their press conferences, told Shapiro to not talk to the press, and he did. Then Johnnie went out and had his own. Both of them couldn’t take a step back to let the other be the leader. When OJ asked for Johnnie to be the head of their team, I thought Bobby was going to have a heart attack.

3. Johnnie Cochran Is a Jerk

Watching the show then watching the trial, I can say that I think Johnnie Cochran is an awful person. He is a great lawyer, and I’m sure if I were ever in legal trouble, if I had the money and if he was alive, I’d hire him. However, I do not like him. I think that his tactics were a little extreme and at times, were a little dangerous. When he wanted the jury to hear Mark Fuhrman’s tapes (he’s also an awful person), he went to talk to the press and got people so riled up that it almost started a riot. Also, I think he is downright disrespectful. When Marcia Clark couldn’t find a babysitter for her children, you’d think he’d be a little understanding to postpone the trial, but yet, he mocked her. It was low blow, but in court, it's definitely unprofessional. Also, I think people forget that he was involved in domestic abuse as well. I mean, do we forget that? Anyway, he's a good lawyer but a bad person.

4. Marcia Clark Slayed

Watching Marcia Clark do her thing was like watching Beyoncé (not exactly, but I was mesmerized). She handled everything the best way anyone could have. People in court slandered her for her hair, for her clothes and for being a mother. She not only handled this case, but she herself was going through a divorce. Her divorce was definitely a smart thing, considering the man she was divorcing sold to the tabloids a nude photo of her. Even though every news station and tabloid magazine was talking about her, she held her head high and slayed in court. She had a little slip up with Chris Darden, her co-prosecutor, hiring him because he was black. Though sometimes not listening to him, she overall did well. She had hardcore evidence, not a story like Cochran.

5. Racism Set OJ Free

Even though prosecution had all the evidence they could have had, OJ was found not guilty. Why? It was due to Mark Fuhrman and the law enforcement that handled the crime scene. It was them that let OJ free. They handled the crime scene so poorly, and Fuhrman became so incredible that the evidence didn’t even matter. Cochran basically made it true that Fuhrman was racist. The tapes of Fuhrman talking, he was definitely racist. Anything he did, especially handling a crime scene like this, made him incredible. How is anyone supposed to believe that what he says or does is non-biased? Exactly, no one can believe it. When a racist person like that walks up to the stand and pleads the fifth to everything, basically saying he’s a racist, all the evidence and facts are out the window. Fuhrman and the LAPD’s racism let OJ walk. Their careless mistakes and actions were to their demise.

6. People Forgot About The People Who Were Killed

To me, I think that this case really got away from itself. It wasn’t really about guilty vs. not guilty; it was about black vs. white. People were going with their emotions. Blacks were so angry with the LAPD for their acquittal from the Rodney King case; they just wanted them to pay. Blacks wanted to win something; I don’t think that they even paid attention to the evidence that was presented, and they just wanted to win. The importance to win was so great that people forgot that people’s lives were lost.

7. If Glove Doesn't Fit, You Must Aquit

This saying is total BS. Why? OJ had arthritis, and his lawyers told him to stop taking his medication because they knew prosecution was thinking about using the glove. When he stopped taking his medication, inflammation of the hands was a consequence. Defense lawyers knew that his hands would not be the normal size, leading to the glove not fitting. OJ's lawyers knew this piece of information however, prosecution did not. It didn't fit because it was made to not fit.

8. Rob Kardashian Is A True Friend

Whenever I think of a good friend now, I think of Robert Kardashian. He was with OJ from the start to finish. He believed so much in his friend that he stuck it out until the end. I’m not exactly sure when Rob stopped believing in OJ, but you can definitely see it in the trial. In the beginning, he’s right there with Cochran and Shapiro on the defense, and then he’s in the backseat. In one scene of the show, he’s picking up all of the lovely Kardashian children, and he gets a moment alone with Kris (his ex wife, and also best friend of Nicole Brown) and explains how sorry he is for making her and the family go through this. Kris asks him why he can’t just quit, and even though he believed his friend did it, he said, “If I quit, it will send him to jail." Some may think, “Well if he thought he was guilty, why didn’t he quit? He should go to jail." However, even if you disagree with something your best friend did, or ex best friend, you never want to see something bad happen to them or be the reason something bad happened to them. When watching the trial and they announce the verdict, you can see the horror on Kardashian’s face. He is shocked and a little scared that he’s free. In the show and after the trial, OJ throws a party at his house, makes a speech how he is going to find out who killed Nicole and that’s the last straw. Kardashian gave OJ his Bible when he went to jail, which was given back to him at the end of the trial. Kardashian drops his Bible on the table and says, “I’m done." He walks out, and OJ catches a glimpse of him; there’s an intense stare, and then Rob is gone. To me, a friend sticks with you through the bad times, which he did just that. Once the bad time was over, Rob was done. He was a good friend.

9. Karma, Karma, Karma

Karma was based all throughout the case. LAPD was awful in their law enforcement practices, and it caught up to them. Their bad decisions let OJ go. OJ should have been guilty but wasn’t found guilty. His bad decisions caught up to him. He was found guilty of kidnapping and robbery when he tried to steal memorabilia from Las Vegas and was sentenced to 33 years in prison. What goes around comes back around.

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'As A Woman,' I Don't Need To Fit Your Preconceived Political Assumptions About Women

I refuse to be categorized and I refuse to be defined by others. Yes, I am a woman, but I am so much more.


It is quite possible to say that the United States has never seen such a time of divisiveness, partisanship, and extreme animosity of those on different sides of the political spectrum. Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are saturated with posts of political opinions and are matched with comments that express not only disagreement but too often, words of hatred. Many who cannot understand others' political beliefs rarely even respect them.

As a female, Republican, college student, I feel I receive the most confusion from others regarding my political opinions. Whenever I post or write something supporting a conservative or expressing my right-leaning beliefs and I see a comment has been left, I almost always know what words their comment will begin with. Or in conversation, if I make my beliefs known and someone begins to respond, I can practically hear the words before they leave their mouth.

"As a woman…"

This initial phrase is often followed by a question, generally surrounding how I could publicly support a Republican candidate or maintain conservative beliefs. "As a woman, how can you support Donald Trump?" or "As a woman, how can you support pro-life policies?" and, my personal favorite, "As a woman, how did you not want Hillary for president?"

Although I understand their sentiment, I cannot respect it. Yes, being a woman is a part of who I am, but it in no way determines who I am. My sex has not and will not adjudicate my goals, my passions, or my work. It will not influence the way in which I think or the way in which I express those thoughts. Further, your mention of my sex as the primary logic for condemning such expressions will not change my adherence to defending what I share. Nor should it.

To conduct your questioning of my politics by inferring that my sex should influence my ideology is not only offensive, it's sexist.

It disregards my other qualifications and renders them worthless. It disregards my work as a student of political science. It disregards my hours of research dedicated to writing about politics. It disregards my creativity as an author and my knowledge of the subjects I choose to discuss. It disregards the fundamental human right I possess to form my own opinion and my Constitutional right to express that opinion freely with others. And most notably, it disregards that I am an individual. An individual capable of forming my own opinions and being brave enough to share those with the world at the risk of receiving backlash and criticism. All I ask is for respect of that bravery and respect for my qualifications.

Words are powerful. They can be used to inspire, unite, and revolutionize. Yet, they can be abused, and too comfortably are. Opening a dialogue of political debate by confining me to my gender restricts the productivity of that debate from the start. Those simple but potent words overlook my identity and label me as a stereotype destined to fit into a mold. They indicate that in our debate, you cannot look past my sex. That you will not be receptive to what I have to say if it doesn't fit into what I should be saying, "as a woman."

That is the issue with politics today. The media and our politicians, those who are meant to encourage and protect democracy, divide us into these stereotypes. We are too often told that because we are female, because we are young adults, because we are a minority, because we are middle-aged males without college degrees, that we are meant to vote and to feel one way, and any other way is misguided. Before a conversation has begun, we are divided against our will. Too many of us fail to inform ourselves of the issues and construct opinions that are entirely our own, unencumbered by what the mainstream tells us we are meant to believe.

We, as a people, have become limited to these classifications. Are we not more than a demographic?

As a student of political science, seeking to enter a workforce dominated by men, yes, I am a woman, but foremost I am a scholar, I am a leader, and I am autonomous. I refuse to be categorized and I refuse to be defined by others. Yes, I am a woman, but I am so much more.

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You Might Love Being A CNA, But That Compassion Won't Show Up In Your Paycheck

A big heart means nothing if you're struggling to make ends meet.


To the ones who love their job and doing what they do but is on the fence about leaving their job, I was in your shoes, too.

I knew when I started my job as a CNA (certified nurse's assistant), it would be a hard one. If you know anything about the job duties of a CNA, you'll quickly understand that for all of the work that we do, we're ridiculously underpaid and overworked.

I'll start by saying I loved my job.

Though the days were long and I was on my feet more than I sat down during the day, I loved being able to help people. I loved being able to make people smile and hear a simple "Thank you" and sometimes, that's all I needed for my day to do a full 360. I could be having the worst day in the world and covered in random bodily fluids, but walking out of a resident's room and hearing them quietly tell you that they appreciate what you've done for them, that's truly the one thing that can change my entire day, knowing that my hard work doesn't go unnoticed.

But compassion doesn't pay mine or anyone else's bills.

Someone could love their job and be happy to be there every single shift, but when you're overworked but so underpaid, your compassion may not leave, but your bills begin to pile up and you're stuck with not knowing what to do. If you're anything like me, you'll be so conflicted about leaving your job to find something better financially, but you know that you're leaving a job you enjoy doing and you may not find that enjoyment elsewhere.

At the end of the day, you have to realize what would be best for you. You can be the most compassionate about your job, but that compassion means nothing if you're struggling to make ends meet. I know from experience that if you're in a field like mine, it's hard to leave because you know people will need you, but you have to do what's best for you and only you.

Compassion doesn't pay the bills.

You may have to leave a job that you love, but there are so many opportunities out there and, who knows, you might find one you enjoy just as equally.

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