Judge’s decision to reduce bail in trooper’s death questioned

Judge Richard Okrent’s decision to reduce Raul Benitez Santana’s bail from $1 million to $100,000 is both stupid and an injury to law enforcement (“Judge reduces bail for driver accused of killing Marysville trooper,” The Herald, May 17). Santana is charged with killing State Patrol trooper Chris Gadd on March 2, when he rammed into Gadd’s patrol car on I-5. Allegedly, the accused was high and drunk at the time. Oh, and let us also understand he was illegally in the United States.

Intellectual giant Deitrich Bonhoeffer said for the stupid person, “reasons fall on deaf ears; facts that contradict one’s prejudgment simply need not be believed — in such moments the stupid person even becomes critical — and when facts are irrefutable they are just pushed aside as inconsequential, as incidental.” The fact that Judge Okrent bought the lawyers’ argument (that Santana does not pose a threat to society) proves Okrent’s stupidity. Judge Okrent’s stupidity is not a defect of intellect, rather it is his own construct and an abdication of social responsibility.

Bonhoeffer continues, “it becomes apparent that every strong upsurge of power in the public sphere, be it of a political or of a religious nature, infects a large part of humankind with stupidity.” Unfortunately, rational people too often place the stupid person in positions of authority and power. Citizens driving on I-5 and other public roads better keep looking in their rear-view mirror because Judge Okrent’s infection with stupidity means he does not have their backs covered let alone their safety.

Sheldon Beddo

Kingston

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