Thursday, 7 January 2016

New Year, New Abuses

Here we are, another year, and more "what the heck" stories are in the news.

An article in yesterday's newspaper noted that a man who allegedly killed his fiancĂ©e was supposed to go on trial this month.  However a trial won't be happening soon because he claims to have not found a lawyer yet despite having had six months to do so.  "It's difficult over the holidays" was his excuse.  Meanwhile the deceased woman's family is still suffering emotionally.

A prominent doctor who killed his two children to supposedly get back at his wife for divorcing him was recently convicted of second-degree murder at a second trial (the first trial found him not guilty by reason of temporary insanity).  Then the inevitable news came that he's appealing the guilty verdict, as many convicted felons do.

Prosecutors in L.A. have declined to charge Bill Cosby with sexually abusing two teenagers, citing time limits and lack of evidence.  He still has a number of other charges pending against him, but his lawyers are confident that they can beat those as well.

These are all clear examples of people playing the system to delay the application of justice to the point where the system breaks down and justice does not get appropriately served.

Here's a better way (in my opinion).

If an accused hasn't found a lawyer after six months the court should assign one.  Period.  No more wasting the court's time and money.

The defense trick of "temporary insanity" shouldn't be allowed.  Most adults know the difference between right and wrong, no matter what their emotional state.  Killing someone requires clear thought, and clear thought precedes intent.

There should be no statute of limitations as far as sexual abuse is concerned.  There's a meme going around that says: 40 men call a woman a whore and people believe it even if she isn't one.  40 women call a man a rapist and people say "Wait, let's think a minute here."  It has become acceptable for a man to joke about his sexual prowess, but a woman's sexuality is constantly under attack.

These and many other parts of the system have to change in order to curb the abuse and render justice more quickly and adequately.