Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Shatterblog!: On The So Called "Justice" System (Rated R)

I'll start by saying that this is a rant, and that I have a bit of a thing regarding laws and justice. Think about that word. Justice. The ultimate force of good in the universe. There is no possible negative connotation. Justice is undoubtedly good at its core. The good prosper. The evil suffer. Right?
Our justice system has a lot of problems. Not America's as much as humanity's. I'll be mostly talking about America though.
I'll be painting a lot of picture's here. Bear with me for a few scenarios.
You're young, you're in love, and nothing can stop you. After a whirlwind romance, you get married. Life's good. You have 2 kids, a house in Suburbia, you and your spouse both have steady jobs. After a few months, things go sour. Your significant other isn't who you thought they were. They drink. They do drugs. Then, heavily under the influence, they beat you. The next day, they apologize. Life goes back to normal for as week or two. They beat you again. And again. They threaten your kids. You're scared. You try to leave, but they drag you back, threaten to kill you, kill your family, your kids.You believe them. Scared, alone, you don't know where to turn. Desperate, you snap. You kill them, you take your kids, you run. Now, you're arrested. You go to jail for murder. Your children grow up without either parent. Is this justice? People are put in jail for the safety of others. So they don't kill someone else. For the good of society. Will this battered human being, seeking only escape, kill again? Yes, there are laws that you can get a reduced sentence, get out of jail time, if you suffered abuse. As someone who is interested in crime documentaries, books, etc, I can say that the jury doesn't always see it that way. Next scenario.
Your marriage isn't great, but you cope. You love your spouse, but they seem to be pulling away from you. They spend a lot of your money, putting a real strain on you. You let it go, writing heartfelt journal entries about how much you just want things to work. You aren't ready for divorce. You know with just a little love and effort, you can preserve your marriage. You keep trying, but things get very bad very fast. You want so much to keep the marriage together, but the stress, the pain, the depression, they're building up. You sleep in separate rooms. You can barely have a civil conversation. Life is only getting worse. One night, there's an accident. It could be anything. A gas leak. A drug overdose. A robbery gone wrong. Your spouse is killed. Because you were in a different room, the gas didn't poison you, the panicked robber didn't shoot you. You survive, heartbroken. Sure, your marriage had problems. But you still loved them. You tried. You called 9-1-1. You performed whatever CPR you could. Now the police get involved. They don't believe your story. They think you used car exhaust to poison them. You overdosed them with prescription medication. You hired a hitman. They point to your obviously unhappy state of mind. How much better your life would seem to be with your spouse gone. The jury sees it their way. Again, your kids are alone. What did this accomplish? What justice was served by this? One parent dead to a tragic accident, and justice seeks to put the other away for life? Yes, murder is wrong. But is jail time or the death penalty the right answer? How much weight do people really put behind the phrase "reasonable doubt"? There are definite flaws that need to be dealt with. Justice should be good. If someone is in the court, crying as a loved one is sentenced to life without the possibility of parole, it's probable something is very, VERY fucking wrong. Yes, serial murderers' mommies love them too. But children shouldn't be left parentless like that. Justice isn't eye-for-an-eye anymore. It's for the greater good. Not personal gain. Not to get another win as a bigshot lawyer. Not for fucking payback. To better the town, the country, the world. Guess what? The world isn't black and white. Shit happens. Hundreds of genuinely good people die every week for no fucking reason. It sucks, but it is. Blame doesn't always have to be assigned. Cops arrest people just to get the public off their backs. The public clamors for a murder suspect because according to television, every death happens for a reason, and it's probably a murder. When shit happens, people want to make sense of it. It hurts to lose a loved one. It helps a lot if you can put the one responsible behind bars. But your petty fucking vengeance is not worth degrading justice. Someone isn't always responsible. Someone doesn't always need to be behind bars. People need to realize that justice is ultimate. So much more important than anything else. Petty fucking people are destroying what should be the most important and true and GOOD thing in the universe.

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