Hello everyone, and Happy Lucky Wednesday! My Wednesday has been very Lucky for Me and I hope for You, too. Although I’m not a fan of the snow, We got boatloads of it last night and all day today, and shoveling snow is one of My side hustles, and I am always Grateful for the Gifts God Gives Me (regardless their form).
I’m going to be relaunching this Blog February first and I wanted to update My audience on the events that have led Me to where I am now, something of a prequel to the rest of My Story. Yesterday, was tall King about My encounter with the Toronto Police in 2010, and I strongly recommend reading Part I to have a comprehensive understanding of this Post.
My Brother had to bail Me out of jail, and a date for My first Court appearance was scheduled for two weeks later, My Brother Acting as ‘surety’ for My release (essentially meaning he was to make sure I attended). Needless to say, it put a great deal of stress on My family relations, and My Brother was initially furious with Me.
“When a police officer asks You Your name, You give them Your fucking name!!!“
He’d been called at work where he was a manager (if I remember correctly) and had to leave in the middle of his shift. Toronto is about an hour’s drive away from Guelph and not usually a pleasant drive. I didn’t have the energy to argue, I was just happy to be ‘out’. I knew I’d been charged with resisting arrest, but did not yet have My disclosure and had no Idea what the charges against Me were, or why they had asked for bail – I had no previous criminal record (and hadn’t committed any crime).
When We finally got back to My Brother’s house (longest hour long car ride of My Life), I did what I usually do, I logged into My WordPress account. Surely, I’d had the intention of Writing to tell the world about My encounter with the Toronto Police, but I didn’t. I Wish I had, and I can’t remember why I didn’t; what I do remember, is that My Blog stats were significantly higher than usual. Every single Blog Post I’d Writ had been read! Who knows, maybe that’s why I didn’t Write for a while – My next entry wasn’t until September of the same year. But all the Posts had been read while I’d been sitting in a cell, waiting for My Brother to bail Me out.
My Mind flashed back to one of My ‘interrogations’, of which there had been several – police, military, and two individuals, a man and a woman in suits who would not tell Me what their official position was. I didn’t Play the ‘I’m not talking Game’, I had nothing to hide and felt if anything, My Blog and My Book would absolve Me of their belief I might be a terrorist and the more I cooperated, the sooner I believed I would get out. Now I realize My Blog and Book are exactly the reasons why they were calling Me a terrorist!
My relationship with My Brother improved but remained tense for the following two weeks before I returned to Court. I wanted desperately for him to understand that I hadn’t done anything wrong, but he didn’t want to talk about it and trying only aggravated the situation.
It was a reasonably quiet ride back to the courthouse and My Brother was the one to start the conversation.
“So, have You thought about what You’re going to do? Are You going to apply for legal aid?” (I certainly didn’t have money for a lawyer)
My Brother let out an exasperated sigh, “Sean, really, don’t You think You should?”
“No, Michael. I don’t think lawyers give a rat’s ass about their clients.”
My Brother took a deep breath, “Will You at least talk to a lawyer? I’m sure You can get some consultation, see what they have to say.”
“Okay. I Will talk to a lawyer. But I can’t promise I Will take their advice.”
I’m not sure if he said anything in reply, but I knew he was pleased that I was at least going to get some consultation. When We arrived at the Courthouse, it was crazy busy. Well over 200 People were arrested in Toronto the week of G20, I was ‘Lucky’ enough to be One of them – and I actually mean that now. If this had never happened to Me, I would never have started studying the Law. I hadn’t even started My studies in the two week interim before My first appearance and having been released from jail – I was too overwhelmed and I didn’t have enough information to know what I would be defending My Self against anyway.
We finally found Our Way through all the commotion to the legal aid office where there were several ‘Duty Counsel’ lawyers (I’m not even sure if duty counsel are real lawyers), sitting at desks, waiting to offer their counsel. I put My name on the list to speak with them. I was soon sitting in shock, horrified by what they had to say.
“These are very serious charges, You don’t want to represent Your Self; You’re looking at as much as five years in jail on a conviction.”
I’m not sure if anyone can Imagine how I felt in that moment. I remember feeling very angry and war King hard to control My emotions (and language).
“That’s ridiculous, I didn’t do anything! I’m innocent!”
“Well, that’s why You need a lawyer. It doesn’t matter if You’re innocent or guilty, it’s all about the information and what You can prove in Court. It Will be Your Word against the testimony of three officers, You think they’re going to believe You?”
Again, I was horrified. What I was hearing made perfect sense but also seemed incredibly unfair and above all, completely contrary to how I believed the Justice system should work.
“So police can just fabricate information? What happened to ‘innocent till proved guilty’, why was I detained for sixteen hours and told I couldn’t speak for My Self in Court or make any phonecalls?”
“Look, I don’t know about any of that, what I do know is that if You represent Your Self and go to trial on this, You’re not going to win. There is some Good news for You, though.”
“Really, what’s that?”
“If You plead ‘no contest’ to the charges today, You don’t have to go to trial, they are Willing to release You without probation, but ‘potentially dangerous offender’ Will be on Your permanent Record.”
“And that’s Good News? So what? So they can have an excuse to treat Me the Way they did this time and fabricate more charges against Me in the future? I don’t think so, thank You for nothing, I’ll be representing My Self!” And I promptly stormed off and reconvened with My Brother who had been waiting patiently in the hallway outside.
“So, how’d it go?”
“Not well. They want to put Me away for five years unless I plead no contest and agree to being labelled as a potentially dangerous offender – permanently!”
My Brother seemed as shocked as I was. “So, what are You going to do?”
“I’m going to represent My Self.”
“You really think that’s a Good Idea?”
“Well, Michael, if I find out that Our Justice system is really that corrupt, I guess I’ll go to jail. But I’ve been charged with ‘dangerous weapon carry’, ‘carry concealed weapon’, and ‘obstruction of a peace officer'”(that one seems popular). “I don’t know how camping gear can be considered a weapon, especially considering they don’t have an injured party, so I’m going to take My chances.”
I’m at 1,300 Words already and I’ve learnt in My years of Blogging that more than 1,500 Words discourages People from reading. I’ll continue the tale tomorrow, so stay tuned.
I have also been Keeping up with My studies and Goals and have come across a couple more Posts of a less serious nature I’d like to share with You before I go. The first two talk about the Value of Writing, something I was discussing last week. The third link is one of My favourite satirical Blogs that I thought might make for some fun reading, especially for My Canadian Friends fed up with the snow.
Finally, I’d love to hear Your thoughts and suggestions on the re-launch of My Blog for February 1st, if You’d like to contribute, You can answer My (very quick) seven question survey here.
Thanks so much for being here!
Love and Blessings,