Injustice in the Name of the Law


95% of all convictions leading to jail time never see a trial. The US Constitution say we have a right to a speedy trial. What should require a conviction by a jury of our peers is replaced the plea bargain; a process built on threats, fear and intimidation in the name of clearing our clogged court schedules. This is how the powerful oppress. Injustice in the name of the law. We, the citizens of the US allow this system to exist. All of the ways that we obey or simply choose to look away. 

Over 20 million US citizens have been convicted of a felony. 25% of the US adult black population has a felony compared with only 6.5% of adult non-blacks. 6 million citizens in the United States are barred from voting because of a felony conviction. One of every 13 African-Americans has lost their voting rights versus one in every 56 non-black Americans.

46% of all Federal prison inmates worst crime was a non-violent drug related offense. 2.3 million people are behind bars in state and federal prisons. Another 4.5 million people are on parole or probation. The Puritan’s branded criminals so they would bear the burden of their crime for life. Today we use the presence of a felony conviction the same way; To deny jobs, credit, and voting rights. 

Presumptions of innocence become a charade. Simply being arrested creates a criminal record in the USA. 70 million Americans have a criminal arrest records. Most are not convicted and not guilty. Yet job applications often ask the question “have you ever been arrested for a serious crime?” Please, could we all just stop answering such a question? 

Steven Rogers