Michael G. Malaghan
Special to The Hawai‘i Herald
Editor’s note: We continue Michael G. Malaghan’s serialized historical novel, “Picture Bride — A Family Saga,” based on the Japanese immigrant experience. Malaghan’s trilogy takes readers from turn-of-the-20th-century-Japan to Hawai‘i in the picture bride era; the Islands during World War II, highlighted by the exploits of the Nisei soldiers; and beyond.
The novel, which is now available as a printed softcover book, opens with 12-year-old Haru-chan, fleeing her home in Amakusa, Kyüshü, for Hiroshima, where she becomes the picture bride of a Buddhist priest in Hawai‘i.
Author Michael Malaghan is a retired businessman who divides his time between Hawai‘i, Georgia and Japan.
Taka and Pafko witnessed the same trial, but their columns would have had you believe otherwise.
Prosecution Proves its Case
By Takeshi Takayama
Despite the brilliantly clever defense by the renowned Clarence Darrow and tear-filled testimony by alleged assault victim Thalia Massie, the defense failed to make its case. In response to Darrow’s rhetoric, prosecutor Kelley pointed out: “If an unwritten law or a temporary insanity defense can excuse murder when one’s wife accuses a man of rape, where does it stop? What other injustices can excuse one for the murder of another?” Kelley presented the simple facts: They did it. Then he asked the simple question: “Will you let them get away with murder?” The prosecutor added: “The only compassion available is a recommendation for compassionate sentencing.”
A nice touch, that ending. Kelley let the jury know that they can bring back a guilty verdict while considering the mitigating emotions of the defendants. These 12 men know their duty. They will bring back a guilty verdict.
Since Biblical Times
By Andy Pafko
America is a nation of laws. Yet, not every law is just, nor is every crime punishable. There are grievous acts of violence that require punishment. But what happens when one group within society gives a free pass to their own — one who committed a crime — by refusing to do their civic duty?
To claim that a not guilty verdict invites all of us to murder those who violate our freedom, whatever our excuse, is ludicrous. If that were so, we would have such cases weekly. The crime against Thalia Massie was singularly the worst type of injustice: rape, assault. An ignorant race having their way with the wife of a Navy officer.
This case is about public safety. When the jury in November refused to convict these wanton rapists, they made the streets of Hawai‘i unsafe for any white woman. The four heroes who made rapist Joe Kaha-
hawai confess made Hawai‘i a safer place. It was a tragedy that something UNPLANNED and unfortunate happened in the moment while he was in their custody. But that is mitigated by the fact that a rogue jury set him and his fellow thugs free.
The defendants should be commended, not convicted.
Taka was at school, thinking about the subject for his next column. Figuring the jury would take days, maybe a week, to decide this case, he was shocked when on April 29 — only 47 hours after the jury had retired — the radio announced that Judge Davis had called the defendants back to court. Taka rushed to the courthouse.
He slid into his seat in the press box just in time to hear Judge Charles Davis intone: “Have you reached a verdict?”
“We have, Your Honor,” replied the jury foreman.
“What say you?”
“Guilty of manslaughter,” he said, followed by a dramatic pause, “. . . with a recommendation for leniency.”
The courtroom’s haole gallery erupted in protest.
Judge Davis banged his gavel repeatedly to no avail and finally retired to his chambers.
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