March 8, 2010: “Is it fair to say. . . ?”*

[How Prosecutor Christopher Tarrant would begin many sentences at Nesto Monell’s trial, February 16 – February 19, 2010, Taunton, MA ]

Is it fair to say that after the factories and mills of Bristol County shut down, drug-dealing became the next best way to make a living in  Brockton, New Bedford and Taunton?

Is it fair to say that Nesto Monell’s skin color is part of this story?

Is it fair to say that juries notice when white people support a defendant of color?

Is it fair to say, as (Quaker; brilliant) Susan Louks noted during the trial, that although the criminal justice system is deeply flawed, it’s the best thing humanity’s come up with; let’s celebrate its desire to do the right thing?

Is it fair to say that this account is highly subjective? And written by a writer, not a reporter? [Answer: Absolutely!]

So let’s begin, as Quakers so often begin, with another question:

Why were half-a-dozen Quakers from Friends Meeting at Cambridge sitting in a once elegant courtroom in Taunton, MA at 9 am on February 16th, 2010?

The short answer: Because of who Nesto is. (Which is, in part, about his mother.)

A longer answer: In support of  Nesto Monell, age 30, who was on trial for drug-dealing and possession of a firearm.

Who is Nesto Monell? What happened the night of March 31, 2005, the night he was arrested? Who’s his mother? What happened at the trial?

Keep reading.

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1 Comment

  1. some of what I’ve been thinking about after the trial has to do with the way we recognize and experience personal power. Nesto had this power that comes with consommate integrity, and the jury felt it, and everyone in the room, and after he was acquitted a whole lot of people felt changed by that – it did good things for everyone that came in contact with it. How would we have experienced that power if he hadn’t been acquitted? It would have been there, but different. And what if Nesto was a woman, standing on her power – how would that have changed the way it felt? hmmm.
    If I was as brilliant as Patricia, maybe I’d have a better idea.

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