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Archive for Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Letter: Rule of law

July 23, 2013

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To the editor:

How is it that our society has lost its perspective on the rule of law in our country. Our judicial system is based on the very old English Common Law. When a crime is committed, the authorities do their level best to bring the offenders to justice. Justice, it seems, has become the equivalent of morality these days. It is a relative term based on what this or that group decides it is.

When an accused is charged with a crime, it becomes the burden of the state to prove their guilt. It is not up to the accused to prove their innocence. Are innocent people convicted? Yes. Are guilty people allowed to go free? Yes. This is the nature of the judicial system with which we live.

Convictions are not handed down based on mob rule or public opinion. Most criminal trials are decided by a jury that is agreed to by both prosecutor and defender. These are the rights handed down by the founding fathers. It is not a perfect system but it is the best system in the world.

When our leaders step in and work to manipulate this system, although one group might think it fair, we move dangerously close to totalitarianism where those that are in power make the rules and call the shots. What is one group’s liberator today may become their oppressor tomorrow.

“Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.” — Sir William Blackstone

Comments

Leslie Swearingen 9 months ago

An executive order is a specific power of the president and the executive branch as provided by the US Constitution in Article II, Section 1.

Some famous examples of the past include President Eisenhower’s order to enforce the desegregation of schools.

http://www.wisegeek.org/what-is-an-executive-order.htm

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fmrl 9 months ago

I agree, no executive orders. Where in the Constitution is that authorized. Also, no more signing statements where Presidents state the reason they will not enforce a law.

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Steven Gaudreau 9 months ago

I assume this is in relation to the Zimmerman trial so i will post this: I'm wondering why so few news outlets are reporting that George Zimmerman and a friend stopped at an accident where a car rolled two days ago. Zimmerman and his friend freed the trapped family of four from the wreckage. No word on the color of the trapped family but it would be hard to know when approaching a rolled vehicle what color the people are you are about to risk your life to save (car fire, other vehicles crashing at the scene, etc.). Usually a person who behaved this way would be a hero. This is not the behavior of an evil person.

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mom_of_three 9 months ago

And we are allowed to express our displeasure if we believe justice has not been done, whether just a common citizen or not.
the justice system has always played a role in race relations, from the supreme court on down, and luckily, people didn't always take what the courts had to say and just stop what they were doing.

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irtnog2001 9 months ago

We are also supposed to be a nation governed by the rule of law and not men. No more executive orders!

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jhawkinsf 9 months ago

I've heard that expression before, that it's better that ten guilty go free than one innocent person be convicted. Yet it seems to me, that in reality, that number ten has grown. Maybe it's now twenty, or fifty. With plea bargains, maybe it's a hundred or a thousand. Couldn't it be true that at a ratio of 10/1, the expression espouses wisdom, but at a much, much higher ratio, it's foolhardy? Or even dangerous to the safety and survival of a particular society?

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Don Brennaman 9 months ago

think snowden is gonna hope this guy is on his jury?

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kansas45 9 months ago

The sad part is that few, any more, understand how any part of our government, including the judicial system, is supposed to function. They don't care as long as they get what they want. Sadder when you try to discuss this with them and they look at you with that deer in the headlight stare, mouth open, and say "What?"

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