Friday, November 27, 2015

This Disgusting Book--2051 by Rick Cornell--Could Very Well Be Our Future!

And on a Sunday morning in early March of 2051, the nation heard the words of Deacon Joe Green:
"Brothers and sisters! Did not Jesus, yes, Jesus Himself, tell us all to love thy neighbor as you would yourself? Did he not say that? Yes--He not only said it and historians told us about it in the Gospel of Mark and the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus said it was the greatest Commandment of all! Of all!! Love thy neighbor as thyself! The whole idea was in Leviticus, even before Jesus Christ was alive!...the foundation of religion! Any religion! Love thy neighbor as thyself! For when you do that, you love God!...
Any now we turn to what is happening out west of here. Brother Beau Browne, the pastor of a Congregational Church loved his neighbor. He loved a man who was down on his luck. A man who had been unfairly persecuted by the police. That's right. The police! For 45 years!! A man unfairly persecuted by the police for 45 years!!
Brother Browne loved this man! Took him into his home! Just like we do at the Calvary Jamboree! Gave him food! Gave him shelter! Gave him a job! Gave him comfort! Gave him the self-respect he hadn't had for years! For years! Just like we do, over and over, at the Calvary Jamboree!
And for that, what happened? The FBI said Brother Browne committed treason! Treason! They despised him! They Tortured him! That's right, they tortured a Christian preacher! They invaded his home with an army tank! An army tank! 'Shock and awe' to a gentle Congregational preacher? A man's home is his castle, except when it's a parsonage? Well, why not? The United States government has to win a war some time! It's been too long for them!
government has to win
And when Brother Browne preached the Sermon on the Mount to these Godless thugs, what did the FBI do? They tortured him some more! And I'll bet they enjoyed it, too! Just thugs! If you are a Godless thug, then hurry, hurry, step right up! There is a career in law enforcement, just waiting for you at the FBI!

By Rick Cornell

I should have been prepared, after reading I Am That Fool by the same author, last year. but it had been too long. I wasn't prepared! What was being said was, to me, disgusting. I thought at first it was a satire and wasn't sure I wanted to continue. I did, however, and eventually came into one of the best legal thrillers, including the courtroom scenes, that I've ever read or seen on television--and I've read and/or watched Law and Order, and other similar dramas for years!

If you have ever wondered what the world would be like, if what is happening in today's world would continues unabated, I realized that this book shows what it would be like! I was disgusted. In just a few years, consider a time when the Patriot's Act has become the Super Patriot's Act and the result is that everybody is treated like an enemy of the state... The laws are so tightly constructed and the penalty is life imprisonment. America is now mostly populated by prisoners!

Back Cover: "2051" tells the story of the dystopian American legal system 36 years after its writing, caused by the greatest act of domestic terrorism on American soil on "831" (August 31, 2049). Under the law hastily passed by Congress in response to the public outrage, an American engaging in the ultimate act of kindness and Christian charity can end up imprisoned for life for "treason." That American turns out to be Beau Browne, the kind, helpful son from Rick Cornell's first novel, the Next Generation Indie Book Award Finalist "I Am That Fool." Can Beau escape the clutches of this unjust law? And if he can, at what price?

I picked Oral Roberts to play Beau Browne...not because Browne was an evangelist, but because of Roberts' soft-spoken though enthused speaking-voice. He seemed to be the best personality match for how I saw Browne...

A man who, when asked to help another man, thought nothing of immediately responding. The description referred to the book as dystopian, although my own reaction was more apocalyptic at first. Surely, I thought, this had to be during a time when evil was totally in control--but then I realized that this could just be the inevitable evolution of life in today's world. We do not find out what happened in  831, 2049 that made the subsequent response to become even more tightly controlling than after 911--"The Super Patriot Act of 2049!"

What we see as the results is simply unbelievable in many instances... So unbelievable that they seem first... For instance, consider once a trial starts that a lawyer becomes aggressive towards what is happening. It results in the Judge ordering that the lawyer's mouth be duct-taped!

So a brief overview--Beau Browne, a shy, soft-spoken but loving pastor has helped a man who had once been claimed to be an enemy of the state. Browne took him in, gave him a job...thus becoming an associate of the enemy. The Pastor has now also been declared an enemy of the state and is arrested for treason... after being tortured...

Beau went to answer the door...but never had the chance to open the door. The local SWAT police smashed down his parsonage door with an Army tank. In the "shock and awe" mode, Gloom and Doom jumped out of the tank holding M-16A10's - advanced weaponry that could on every shot knowck the eyes out of a gnat from 1000 yards away - and wearing paramilitary outfits and protective helmets.
"Cam I help you?" asked a trembling Beau.
They showed Pastor Browne their badges. "Where's Kolkoski?"
Beau, taken aback, said "Who?"
"Don't give me that!" Snarled Doom, smacking Pastor Browne on the back of his knee with his M-16A10. "You know who Kolkoski is! Where is he?"
"Probably cleaning the church's ladies room. Why? Did he do something wrong?"
"No, you did!" replied Gloom...
Doom moved forward and smacked the Pastor in the mouth with the butt of his rifle. "Do we look like we are making this up?"
Beau now started to feel every more intense fear. "Why did you do that?"
"Because you have harbored an enemy of the State," intoned Gloom...
"Beause you have violated the Super Patriot Act of 2049."
..."Because you are a terrorist!"
Beau spit out blood. "Terrorist?" This is insane? I'm not... Don't..."
At this point Doom threw Beau to the ground. Gloom stomped and kicked him. Beau cried out: "Stop! I want a lawyer!"
...At this point, Pastor Browne knew that there were two things not to say: "No!" and "Are you serious?" But what could he do? Lie, capitulate and say, "Yes?" That would probably result in a beating that would take his life.
So, Pastor Browne said this: "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs will be the Kingdom of Heaven..."

When the two agents went on to waterboarding and other tortuous activities, asking the Pastor to confess, he had begun to quote scripture, trying to get them to calm down, but that was not to happen...whether they had their confession, they arrested Pastor Beau Browne and drove him to jail, where they charged him with treason, by reason of violating the Super Patriot Act of 2049...

Fortunately, Pastor Browne had a nephew who was very close to him and who had just passed the bar, but had not tried any cases yet. He was the son of Bonita Browne and Esperanza Lopez, a well-known lawyer. Bonita and to some extent Antonio, were abused by Mother Lopez, but Lopez finally agreed to represent Beau, even though she wasn't a criminal lawyer, but had been enticed because the case was proving to be a big news item, with Deacon Joe Green now routinely preaching about the case...

Lopez was the lawyer who had her mouth duct-taped and she walked off the case. A college professor was then talked into taking on the case...

The trial itself, and surrounding issues, takes up the majority of the book and proved to be intense, but a farce, at least with the first judge...

The ending, for me, was a sad one, as well as somewhat surprising. A number of levels of courts were involved in settling this case so readers have an opportunity to see what was happening at every level, albeit with some questionable actions by many characters who were involved with the case. One potential jurist was just wonderful as she worked as best as she could to influence the jury based upon her feelings about the case, only to see that it was an impossible situation...

In many ways, this book reminded me of Justice in the Round by Harold Michael Harvey. While Justice in the Round is non-fiction, the gravity of what was being covered and the horrendous detailed events of 2051 hit me almost as strongly in Cornell's fiction novel. He obviously created "future fictional" court cases that were used during the trial that were representative of what earlier cases would have affected the present trial. His story proved to be just as realistically presented as the real truth happening in today's courts, as documented by Harvey... Sad, yes, but it produced the same overwhelming realization in me that something has to happen in response to the condition of the legal system.

The question that burned as I read this story, would we accept the possibility of prison to help someone in need? Or would we turn from him or her and continue on, not caring, not helping...but safe from being named a terrorist. In a way, isn't that the question that has been raised by the refugees needing new homes?

From feelings of disgust to feelings of wonderment, would I be That Fool that would open my door and heart to those in need??? Rick Cornell certainly presents us with thoughtful, intriguing and captivating stories that leave a memorable question, "What if?" 

Wow! Do Check it out 'cause it's highly recommended...


I Am That Fool was the first novel by Rick Cornell. He is a 62-year-old attorney who lives in Reno, Nevada, with his wife, Denise, and specializes in criminal appeals and writs. From his 34 years of experience, he has a vast knowledge of "crazy true stories," some high profile for Nevada. But this is fiction - or so he claims.

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