This a good looking production. It is high quality in its writing, acting and production values. We just wonder why was there always some sort of conflict is this fictional, Wisconsin town?(even the title of"PICKET FENCES" suggests, 'that which divides us') They were forever divided into opposing camps, doing battle in the arena of public opinion.
They were endlessly bickering over some of the most divisive issues of our time. It would make one almost believe that there was some hidden political agenda at play here. Every episode seems to follow worst case scenarios, playing on fears and misconceptions that the public at large cling to so stubbornly.A few examples follow.
In one episode, there is a marijuana scare at the local high school. After some debating over the plus and minus of a police search, the cops show up at the school,in great numbers, all carrying large, heavy-duty bolt cutters. Then, while the faculty and student body stand by watching, the police proceed to cut open locks, in order to search locker by locker. Eventually, some contraband herbal material is recovered.
STOP!!! REALITY CHECK:
The procedure of having such warrant-less searches of student lockers has been upheld by courts throughout the land. The one principle that is consistent in all judicial decisions is, the school buildings and lockers are property of the local Board of Education, not the individual student. As such, no student would have any "expectation of privacy", the legal term used by the Supreme Court to describe such matters.
Furthermore,there would be no need to cut any locks off to open same. Representatives from the faculty and the police departments would be present and the students would be instructed to open their lockers of their own volition.
In another episode, lovable,the local attorney (played by Fyvush Finkel) performs a seemingly masterful cross examination of a witness in some case involving the issue of abortion on demand. In it he trivializes the issue of life in the prenatal stages in a most jovial manner. He then reduces the 'choice' of whether or not to abort to the level of having a new hair do or changing ones brand of nail polish.
In another episode, two brothers, who just both happen to be Coroners or Medical Examiners, perform an autopsy on their own mother. During the examination they discover samples of semen on her body. They then submit sample of same to the national DNA Data Bank, and are able to ascertain just who was their mother's jocker.
STOP!?!? REALITY CHECK: (Again!)
There is no such Data Bank*. If any such comparison checks could be done, there would have to already be an existing sample in the system. If not, what would be used to check and compare sample to? In the same manner, fingerprints belonging to a suspect of a crime cannot be of any use, unless previously taken specimens of identified prints have already been on file This is not to say that Mr. Tom Skerret, the man of the perpetually thoughtful countenance, and company don't do an excellent job of acting,for they do. It's just that this mythical Wisconsin town are always being subjected "cutting edge" problems, and all of the view point is from that of the New American World Socialist Party (formrly known as the Democrats).
NOTE:* This is not meant to say that there won't be advances in the gathering and preservation of Forensic Evidence. It's just that a directory or registry of DNA/Semon samples having the magnitude described, is at best, very highly unlikely,ever.
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