No Justice in the Justice System of the USA
"Justice is available only to those who can afford lawyers" (Janet Reno, former attorney general)
TM, ®, Copyright © 2016 Piero Scaruffi All rights reserved.
In 2014 the Innocence Project https://www.innocenceproject.org estimated that there could be up to 5% of innocents in US prisons, or about 120,000 innocent people; but they only research crimes of rape and murder, which means that the number of innocent people could be much higher.
A record number of people were exonerated in 2015: 149 people spent an average of 15 years in prison even thought they were innocent, including 54 accused of murder and 5 who were awaiting execution. That was an all-time record that lasted only one year: the new record was set in 2016, with 166 exonerations. The names and their stories can be found at the National Registry of Exonerations, a project at the University of Michigan Law School.
In 2015 Samuel Gross, the editor of the National Registry of Exonerations, wrote an article in the Washington Post titled "The Staggering Number of Wrongful Convictions in America" (by "America" he meant "the USA", not the whole continent).
About 70% of those wrongly convicted were not white, and about 50% were African-American. Before you scream "racism!" think twice: the whites who were wrongly convicted shared something with the African-Americans, the income level.
These numbers don't include all the people who plea guity in a "plea bargain",
which has become commonplace and in some counties avoids 90% of trials.
But guilty pleas are often a way to tell the defendant "If you don't confess this crime (whether you committed it or not), you will have to spend a lot of money and a lot of time and possibly end up with a much worse sentence".
In 2014 Jed Rakoff wrote an article in the New York Review of Books titled "Why Innocent People Plead Guilty" about the plea bargain. Quote: "a significant number of defendants to plead guilty to crimes they never actually committed."
No surprise then that a stunning number of those exonerated in 2015 and 2016 were people who had falsely confessed to crimes they never committed. Of the 321 DNA exonerations that have occurred in the USA, 30 (about 10%) have involved people who originally pled guilty to crimes that they didn't commit.
Studies show that an incredible number of trials reach the wrong conclusion.
The well advertised cases are those of innocent people who were sent to jail
for long sentences, but there are probably as many cases of guilty people
who were sent free.
The justice system clearly fails in a grotesque number of cases.
The reason is very simple. The system is designed to have attorneys influence
the jury. The attorney's job is not to find out the truth but simply to
win the case for which they are paid. The truth, i.e. "justice", is not the
immediate goal of a trial. The immediate goal of the trial, for both the
defense attorney and the prosecutor, is to brainwash the jurors.
Jurors are, in fact, selected by the attorneys (before the trial begins)
based on how likely they are
to be brainwashed. Attorneys don't like people with a higher degree or with
a background in mathematics ("Beyond any reasonable doubt"? There is always
reasonable doubt). If the defendant is black, the defense attorney clearly
favors having a jury of black jurors, whereas the prosecutor clearly prefers
a jury of Fox News addicts.
When the defendant enters the court, s/he is dressed up. What has the dress
code got to do with the truth? Nothing, but the goal of a trial
is not to find out the truth. The goal is to influence the jurors, and
it turns out that the dress code is one of the top factors in influencing
the jury. A trial is basically an exercise in
psychological violence on the jurors.
Needless to say, wealth has a lot to do with the many wrong convictions and
the many wrong acquittals. A wealthy person can afford to hire an attorney
who is very good at influencing the jury. You can guess the result of a
trial by simply checking the net worth of the defendant. A rich person
is more likely to be acquitted, a poor person is more likely to be convicted,
regardless of whether they have committed the crime or not.
Each attorney will tell you "I'm just doing my job", not "I am looking to
find out the truth". The attorney's job is to defend his or her client,
i.e. to influence the jury.
Some attorneys are better than others at this. Which attorney you get depends
on how much money you can spend. Your odds of being found innocent depend
on how much money you can spend. In simple words,
this amounts to bribing the "justice" system.
I am told that in Russia, when you bribe an official, the official makes a big
deal of how difficult it is to grant you your wish while you are staring
anxiously at him and listening to his lengthy tirade; but, if you paid enough
money, a few days later someone announces, with another lengthy speech,
that you got what you wanted. It is just an elaborate ritual to justify the bribery.
A trial in the USA is often just the same thing: an elaborate ritual to justify the bribery.
See also The Innocence Project
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