"This case...this case is built on emotion. On anger, bitterness, vengeance. But most of all, it is built on shame. It's about the shame of what we did to ourselves back on that planet. And it's about the guilt of those of us who ran away. Who ran away." And that's Bill, and that's the whole beginning arc: we were so busy wondering if the man at the top could forgive himself, we forgot about Lee, leaving Kara to Hell and worse. Those were his people too. His people. "And we are trying to dump all that guilt and all that shame onto one man. And then flush him out the airlock and hope that that just gets rid of it all. So that we can live with ourselves. But that won't work. That won't work. That's not justice." It goes out of him. Captain Apollo rises from the ground and begins to weep. "Not to me. Not to me." And Lampkin grinning Cheshire, knowing the weak places: "No further questions."
Cassidy tells the judges once again that this is bullshit, and they agree, but we already won and everybody knows it. Even Cassidy's like, "Thank you for registering my existence." Franks offers her the chance to cross, and Cassidy almost laughs angrily. "I have no question for defense counsel." Word. This trial! And then...Lampkin rests. Franks calls an adjournment, Lampkin mutters that this is a glorious moment indeed for jurisprudence. Roslin congratulates Cassidy on a job well done, while both of them look like they took bites out of the same lemon.
"All rise." Franks explains the other side of the "system" speech: "Like everything human, justice is imperfect. It's flawed. But it's those very imperfections that separates us from the machines. And maybe even makes us a species worth saving." I like this undertone, it started with Roslin's "preserving the culture at all costs" speech to Chief, back in his episode. The idea that you can't just start over fresh, but you can't stay the way you are: you're stuck. What do you do when you can't get out? Change into something else. "Gaius Baltar. After carefully weighing the evidence, this tribunal, in a vote of three to two...finds you not guilty." Everything goes to hell. Some scattered applause and boos before the riot begins. Roslin grabs Tory and bounces; not out of fear for her safety but because she's breathing fire. Gaius addresses the press, hilariously: "I always knew that I was going to be acquitted, but the fact that I have been found innocent shouldn't disguise in any way that this trial has been a total pantomime!" Things go to hell squared, in the confusion; people getting beat up by Marines, administration getting smacked around. Lee calls out to his father, to save Gaius Baltar.