I like many Americans consume true crime like it is my morning bowl of cereal. I can’t get enough of it some days. I think it is cause I have an addiction to detective shows since I was little. But there is another reason why I am talking about true crime today. As someone that studies politics and policy in the classroom, I can’t help but under if the we as a nation of Americans are doing enough to have justice in America. Upon a recommendation by my Pinterest feed I started listening to the Serial Podcast.
I started off listening to Season 1 Episode 1 and I was addicted. Every episode presented a new turn in the search for answers regarding a murder over 15 years ago. New evidence and testimonies come forward for the defense and prosecution. What seems like a black and white case is proven to be full shades of grey. It makes you question if justice was really served and was the right man paid for the crime. Even when the case was finished, I was dyeing for more.
I consumed Season Two with the same fever. It covered a military criminal case that captured the news awhile back. Remember Sergeant Bergdahl? Type in his name and the news articles will appear. Or just listen to the show and revel in the complex nature of military justice. It gets complicated so be prepared to spend some dedicated time listening to it. Also, this tale gets a little harrowing so I give this season a PG 13 rating. However, the episode that made me just emotional burst out was in Season 3.
It was the episode of a father talking about the death of his daughter and how her killer is still out there. It is heart breaking. I burst into tears listening to the interview. So listeners argue that Season 3 is the worst because of it’s jumpy nature. However, it is the expansive coverage that they took of the courthouse that led them to the emotional and heart ripping story that produced such a reaction in me.
I was sad to see no Season 4 cued up to go, but I did walk away understanding one thing about the American Justice System. It works most of the time but it could do better. It is not broken but leaking. Leaking to the point of possibly becoming a great wave rushing across our lands and justice would be a twisted creature that no one recognize. I don’t know how to fix the leak but something is apparently a miss. We as American and as global citizen need to preservative the face of justice. What that face looks like is up to us to decide here and now.