Saturday, August 05, 2006

Powerful words on sentencing from Judge Young

That Judge Young in Massachusetts is one I'd go to hear speak, on about any subject.

Via AL&P, here is what he wrote at the beginning of U.S. v. Kandirakis:

"For seventeen years federal courts had been sentencing offenders unconstitutionally. Think about that. The human cost is incalculable -- thousands of Americans languish in prison under sentences that today are unconstitutional. The institutional costs are equally enormous -- for seventeen years the American jury was disparaged and disregarded in derogation of its constitutional function; a generation of federal trial judges has lost track of certain core values of an independent judiciary because they have been brought up in a sentencing system that strips the words 'burden of proof', 'evidence', and 'facts' of genuine meaning; and the vulnerability of our fair and impartial federal trial court system to attack from the political branches of our government has been exposed as never before in our history."

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