Friday, June 19, 2009

Innocence Is No Defense

The Supreme Court ruled yesterday that innocent people convicted and imprisoned by the state have no right to new technology that proves their innocence. Chief Justice Roberts opined that, more important than actual guilt or innocence, is to not "unnecessarily overthrowing the established system of criminal justice." This is what an absence of empathy gets us.

Roberts, in his opinion, refers to the notorious Herrera v. Collins case of 1993. In that case the usual suspects (Scalia and Thomas) found that it was constitutional for Texas to execute an innocent man as long as he was properly convicted.
There is no basis in text, tradition, or even in contemporary practice (if that were enough), for finding in the Constitution a right to demand judicial consideration of newly discovered evidence of innocence brought forward after conviction. ~ A. Scalia
In both cases the Supreme Court's conservative majority has found that the State's goal of maintaining a smoothly running conviction mill is more important than an innocent man's right to freedom.


Dr. Chuck said...

Empathy frees a confessed murderer
named Miranda because he was not told
that he could have a lawyer present.
I also disagree with the "spin" you
placed on the quotes. I didn't look at the context of the quotes or
whether the quotes were accurate. A text without a context is a pretext.

Jonathan Daugh said...

Play all the word games you want, but INNOCENT is INNOCENT.

Its just that, TODAY, that doesn't count for much. Sadly.