Law. Not Justice
After a long time between drinks I had a chat with my friendly neighbor Marc on social matters that bother him. Here is what he had to say:
Upbringing embodies two components i.e.
- Respect, including self-respect, and respect for values – or a lack there-of.
- Discipline, including self-discipline – or a lack there-of.
Our lawyer told me that when you go to court, you receive Law, not Justice.
- So why is it called the Criminal Justice System?
Or the “Department of Justice and Regulation” as it is in our state?
- It is a misnomer. Politicians misname things to suit certain agendas.
To quote George Orwell of “1984” and “Animal Farm” fame:
“Political language — and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists — is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind”. “Politics and the English Language”, 1946
Solidity to Pure Wind
We are going through a crime wave where we live. Home invasions, car-jacking, assaults, violent robberies, drug-fueled violence, hit and run drivers (literally) who leave their victims to die by the side of the road.
Lets put solidity to this:
- Car-jacking/theft is up almost 85%.
- In general – crime is up almost 13%, while it is receding in other states.
- Violent crime covers the first 16-18 items on nightly news.
- In some suburbs the citizens have formed watch-groups and even vigilante groups.
Imagine the trauma for the normal citizenry.
- The head of police warned the citizenry not to form such groups. “We are making progress”.
Solidity to pure wind. It has been 7 months and crime is rising
- The state premier told the citizenry to leave it up to the police to handle (49 police per 100,000 residents, police stations are being closed in most suburbs).
Solidity to pure wind.
Do Not Overstep the Mark
A popular legal expert warns on TV “Careful not to overstep the mark if you catch a group of home-invaders – because you do not want to be jailed for 8 or 10 years.” That is the law.
Stuff the Law mister legal eagle.
We want Justice.
Like it says in the” Department of Justice and Regulation”. Otherwise, name it correctly.
- Question to the legal eagle: What does overstep mean when you are 71, alone in your home and get attacked (in your home) by a group of crowbar swinging youths who inflict bodily harm, steal your car, drive it 20 km and then set it on fire?
Dear Mr. Legal Eagle: Will you kiss and cuddle the perpetrators if you or your family were the victims?
If the state cannot protect its citizenry, then may the citizenry protect themselves?
We provide state lawyers (i.e. society pays) for those who get caught. And if they are under-age they are often released (without bail) into their parents’ custody.
- The same parents who let them roam the streets at 3.30 a.m.
People of age less than 18 are considered under-age, regardless of the crime they commit. They do not get named publicly and get soft-touch sentences. Even get sent home.
- Case in point: A group of 3 gets caught for a home invasion and car theft at 3.30 a.m. Ages: 17, 14 and 12. The 12-year old’s rap sheet shows 21 break-ins and entry, car theft, even bodily harm. 21 times. And he gets released into the custody of the same parents who did not know where he was at 3.30 a.m. in the morning.
I suppose that is the “Regulation” side of the Department of “Justice and Regulation”.
Three questions come to mind:
- Should the legal age of being considered an adult criminal be lowered?
- Will these parents ever get control of their children?
- OR are they possibly beneficiaries of the loot?
A volunteering bleeding-hearts person in our area visits these under-age criminals when they are caught – to help them understand their rights.
- Their RIGHTS? But should someone not focus on the WRONGS?
- Who helps the victims overcome their trauma – inflicted by those who now all of a sudden are too young AND have rights?
How Do We Correct This?
Here is what needs to happen – and I know the bleeding hearts leftists will disagree but that is fine.
Just to make clear: I have degrees in Sociology, Psychology and Criminology. And I have been involved with criminals in jails, including for violent and drug-related crimes.
That includes making the criminal accept responsibility for the crime.
An “I am sorry” to get a reduced sentence does not work.
Victims do not get reduced sentences. Neither should criminals.
Hand down appropriate sentences
100 hours of community services on how to make jam or to cut grass (these are real sentences!) will not teach a criminal not to assault an elderly person on the train or not to invade a home.
Soft-touch community correction orders are nonsense.
Create Citizen Review Boards
Citizens should review parole boards and judges/magistrates’ performance.
Let the citizens develop a scoring system that affect judges / magistrates’ annual increases/promotions and even retaining their jobs.
With all due respect to a separation of the judiciary from the citizens, we vote for government and if we don’t like them we can repeal them only after a certain timeframe. In the mean time we have career judges / magistrates who are appointed and who are beyond the citizenry’s reach.
It they fail us, then how do we correct it?
- The citizenry are the victims. And pay the taxes that pay the politicians, parole boards, judges and magistrates salaries. They actually work for us. So we should be able to fire them.
So rather than let a situation develop to a point where vigilante groups are formed, get rid of “soft touch” judges/magistrates. Two strikes and they are out of a job.
Keep parole boards and judges responsible for any criminal behavior perpetrated by criminals they release into society.
We pay the taxes and we want to see it at work.
Create Citizen Review Boards.
Let the citizens set lower limit sentences for crimes
There is a trend to give increasingly lighter sentences and parole reviews for even murder after a few years.
This is in no-body’s interest. Victims of violent crimes live in constant fear when the criminals get out on parole. And going back to jail AFTER another violent crime is not a deterrent for the criminal.
Let citizens decide lower limit sentences.
Let Victims Sue Ministers/Judges/Magistrates/Parole Boards
Develop a mechanism for victims to sue the ministers/judges/magistrates/parole boards in their private capacity.
We are kept responsible for our behavior and mistakes we make at work.
Make ministers/judges/magistrates/parole boards fire-able by the public.
Life for certain categories
Certain groups don’t get to walk free – ever: Murderers, child molesters, drug-lords, perpetrators of grievous bodily harm – regardless of whether perpetrated whilst drunk or drugged-up. That should be aggravating circumstances – not grounds for leniency.
And this should include vehicle-related crimes.
Serious crimes don’t have parole.
Criminals must face their victims and explain why they did what they did and how they intend to change for it not to happen again – in the presence of their parents/partners and the court.
Criminals must face victims (at the choice of the victims).
Keep parents responsible
Keep parents responsible for their children’s crimes in terms of financial costs to victims. Not the state. We do not want to pay for a criminal’s misbehavior.
This should also include legal costs. If necessary, sell their belongings. That should be part of the punishment.
Keep parents responsible for under-age kids’ crimes.
Tackle problems at the core
Fix the core/source of the problem.
Confiscate property. Solidity to pure wind.
Then deal with the criminals
Do not treat symptoms. Be relentless on the problem.
And a nice last touch
Let real hardcore crims have a session with repeat offending kids. Like it is done in some places in the USA. An in-your-face session that is. Sweet talk, return to parental custody, and community service apparently does not work. Neither does light sentences.
Consider in-your-face therapy.