I feel like it's almost a requirement at this point, a social obligation because I followed the end of her trial so closely and with such anticipation. And I'm going to put this out there, that I do have very specific and definite feelings toward the trial and toward Casey Anthony (if you follow me on Facebook, you would know).
To be honest, though, I think the problem here is that what I personally think doesn't matter.
The fact of the matter is that a beautiful little girl is dead. Some serious inconsistencies leave a lot of unanswered questions, and I worry - I think like a lot of us do - that the case will not be pursued any further and that other persons of interest won't be properly examined. Regardless of how any of us feel about Casey Anthony specifically, someone out there is walking around freely who took the life of a child.
And let's not forget the jurors - 12 men and women who had a horribly difficult job, who hadn't followed the case previously but who all the same had to take a lot of presented evidence and commentary and put aside their feelings to try to make an unbiased decision that involved the life of two human beings - one still present, the other long gone. I can't imagine their thought processes. I can't imagine how difficult it must be to have your heart screaming one thing and your mind trying to interpret another. I wouldn't have wanted to trade places with them for the world and try to do what they did, and I hope it's never something I'm called upon to do. I'm proud of them for doing their civic duty, for not trying to get out of it like most people would have, and for sticking out some of the more difficult moments of the trial. Again, I don't think I could do it.
And then there's this, an article from Orlando's WESH News: "Casey Juror: 'I Did Not Say She Was Innocent'". It specifically notes that after coming to their incredibly difficult conclusion, the jurors all felt sick to their stomachs, physically ill at what they'd endured to come to any conclusion at all. I think that single physical response proves that so many of them overlooked their personal convictions about the trial and about who was or wasn't guilty to try to literally use the evidence alone.
I'd also like to note that I'm not a fan of the death penalty. I can see the point that some people make, in that an inmate sentenced to life in prison is often given better care, better meals, and so on than individuals on the outside world - and that said life costs taxpayers a deal to maintain. However, I'd like to note that a number of people in states that are especially backed up by death row inmates actually pass away while on death row from natural causes or old age - the equivalent of life in prison, depending on their age at incarceration. Also, the cost of state-paid appeals can be astronomical - and for inmates on death row, the moment they're sentenced they are automatically put on a roll for appeals. These appeals can take years, decades even, and an inmate can continue to appeal every time it comes around to be their turn. The justice system is a disaster and a blessing all at once in this way, giving potentially innocent people the opportunity to prove themselves while giving the guilty a "get out of jail free" pass with the right opportunity and potential circumstantial evidence.
In the end, what truly matters most, no matter my personal feelings about any of the Anthony family, is that we must make sure that the individual responsible for Caylee Anthony's murder is brought to justice. There is every potential that Casey Anthony is truly at fault, and at the same time, there is every possibility that she was completely uninvolved, and is in serious need of a good psychologist to figure out why she behaved the way she did after her daughter went missing.
If you're interested in ensuring that Caylee's death was not in vain, and that her memory is forever preserved in a way that can help prevent the same thing from happening to other children, please consider signing and forwarding on this petition to start Caylee's Law - which would make it a criminal offense to not report a child as missing in a timely manner. Unfortunately, if a similar law had existed sooner, there is every possibility that Caylee's life could have been saved - or that her remains would have been found sooner, and more useful DNA evidence found on them.
Blessings to everyone, and I hope Caylee Anthony rests in peace.