Yes, the rich are different from you and me. Most of us ordinary people find a wallet and make an effort to return it to its rightful owner, contents intact.
Not so with a rich dentist out of Michagan. Worth between 3-4 million dollars according to his own estimates, this bad guy dentist visiting Florida found a wallet and used the student owner's credit card to buy pizza. It's reported he had plenty of cash on hand when he was arrested - enough to cover his purchase.
He got busted: http://www.reddit.com/tb/g0o36
Another take id'ed Dr. Ludwig as their "Moron of the Day" caught in the act: http://www.truecrimereport.com/2011/03/richard_ludwig_moron_of_the_da.php
Boston's My Fox gives us a pic of that wealthy yet dishonest dentist: http://www.myfoxboston.com/dpp/news/offbeat/millionaire-dentists-uses-stolen-credit-card-to-buy-pizza-20110308
And from http://www.wtsp.com/news/local/story.aspx?storyid=179524, I loved this note: "Deputies say that when they asked him why he took the card and used it, Dr. Ludwig told them, "I picked up the card, what was I supposed to do with it?""
Where on earth did this guy get the idea that kind of behavior was gonna fly? How about the U.S. government which has been letting the wealthiest Americans off the hook for all kinds of crimes that they walk away from with impunity on the most part and slaps on the wrist the rest of the time? It's a start.
We can laugh at Richard Lewis Ludwig, DDS. We can also be fairly sure he'll get a bye on his criminal case too. After all, with a generous campaign contribution to the GOP that he can easily afford, and a plea bargain that will let him keep his license to practice, not to mention his wealthy lifestyle, he'll likely end up with probation along with an admonition not to set foot in Florida for a set amount of time.
Frankly, I'd be very surprised if Dr. Ludwig went to prison for the three felonies he was charged with. If he does happen to run into a humorless jury, he could go to a 'Camp Cupcake' type prison and after he gets out, will be 'rehabilitated' socially, economically and politically followed, a few years later, with some sort of pardon restoring all his rights.
It makes me think that if the shoe were on the other foot - if it had been Mr. Harrun Majeed, that US Navy veteran and current student, who found Dr. Ludwig's wallet and used Dr. Ludwig's credit card to buy $40 worth of pizza, then Mr. Majeed would be facing at least 5 years in a Florida prison followed by a lengthy parole. He certainly wouldn't be allowed the post-prison 'rehab' that the wealthy get. Just wouldn't happen. And he'd have plenty of hurdles shoved in his way too...for the rest of his life.
There's two tiers of justice in America, no matter what they tell us. One tier for the wealthy and another for the rest of us and that, folks, is a wrong needing to be righted.
Lastly, there is the nasty little question at the back of my mind that wonders if, on seeing Mr. Majeed's name on the credit card, the Dr. assumed the guy was perhaps Muslim and had acted out of a more biased motive.