Money Talks O.J. Walks by Larry Topper (published by Press-Tige Publishing, Catskill, New York, 195 pages, $13.95).
This book recounts the trial of O.J. Simpson in the double murder of Nichole Brown and Ronald Goldman. It also comments on the legal system to whose decisions all defendants are captive and to which all aggrieved seek redress. To a satirist, the judicial system is normal a fertile ground as is almost anything associated with the government. This trial in particular, represented a bumper crop. It was an exaggeration of every weakness inherent to the system and a spawning ground for yet more. It provides a comprehensive and concise record of the trial, without dedicating a substantial portion of one's life to the process. It also interjects a bit of commentary, to provide perspective, and some satire and humor. The goal is to make the reader's task more rewarding and less arduous through the use of comical imagery, surprisingly little of which had to be invented.
The trial uniquely captured the public imagination. There are several theories regarding the reason for this phenomenon that range from simple gossip to the sensational nature of the crime. celebrities tend to be either deified or vilified. The public seldom, if ever accepts celebrities as simple human. If someone is perceived as good, a significant violation of society's mores precipitates shock and disappointment. If perceived as bad, any semblance of humanity is hailed as a rebirth.
O.J. Simpson was a boyish, articulate, good natured, former football hero. He played golf with Arnold Palmer and made Hertz commercials. The idea of him committing a brutal double murder was unbelievable. It would be like Charlie Manson as a televangelist. It is this out-of-character perception that probably accounted for much of the trial's interest.