EPUB The Collapse of American Criminal Justice By William J Stuntz – ratitechnologies.co.za

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  • The Collapse of American Criminal Justice
  • William J Stuntz
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  • 15 April 2020
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Read Ò PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB Ç William J Stuntz The Collapse of American Criminal Justice Free read ✓ 6 Ly minority defendants A leading criminal law scholar looks to history for the roots of these problemsand solutions. Written by one of the most influential legal scholars of the last three decades years The Collapse of American Criminal Justice Belknap Press 2011 aims at nothing less than a comprehensive description of today s criminal justice system how it came to be what it is today and what can be done to fix it William J Stuntz describes the current Criminal Justice System as an arbitrary discriminatory and punitive beast that has lost its way through politicizing criminal punishment emphasizing procedural rather than substantive law and losing a sense of local democracy Stuntz completed the manuscript for this book on his deathbed and it was published after his death Here is Stuntz in his own wordsAmong the great untold stories of our time is this one the last half of the twentieth century saw America s criminal justice system unravel There are three keys to the system s dysfunction each of which has deep historical roots but all of which took hold in the last sixty yearsFirst the rule of law collapsed To a degree that had not been true in America s past official discretion rather than legal doctrine or juries judgments came to define criminal justice outcomesSecond discrimination against both black suspects and black crime victims grew steadily worse oddly in an age of rising legal protection for civil rights Today black drug offenders are punished in great numbers even as white drug offenders are usually ignored At the same time blacks victimized by violent felonies regularly see violence go unpunished the story is different in most white neighborhoodsThe third trend is the least familiar a kind of pendulum justice took hold in the twentieth century s second half as America s justice system first saw a sharp decline in the prison population in the midst of a record setting crime wave then saw that population rise steeply In the late 1960s and early 1970s the United States had one of the most lenient justice systems in the world By century s end that justice system was the harshest in the history of democratic government

review The Collapse of American Criminal Justice

The Collapse of American Criminal Justice

Read Ò PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB Ç William J Stuntz The Collapse of American Criminal Justice Free read ✓ 6 Face a jury; policing is inconsistent; plea bargaining is rampant; and draconian sentencing fills prisons with most. This book made me uncomfortable than any book I have read in at least the past three years That is an enormous testament to its brilliance and importance Stuntz claims that we have created a criminal justice system both harsh and ineffective If you accept as a basic principle that the criminal justice system exists to minimize the harm caused to all Americans both criminals and non criminals then this is a damning indictment indeedCriticism of the criminal justice system is the rule not the exception in the academy but the late Stuntz was that rarest of creatures the openly evangelical Christian academic He approaches the issue from a different perspective than usual He also possessed an exceptional clarity of thinking and discipline of thoughtThe Collapse of American Criminal Justice extensively maps the broad sweep of the history of criminal law and crime in America Particular emphasis is given to regional trends and the differences therein from the generally effective and fair and just system in New England to southern lynching to frontier justice in the west His work here will be of great interest to any student of David Hackett Fischer s Albion s Seed More relevant to modern criminal justice I think is his eual emphasis on the rise of procedure The 1910 version of the Cyclopedia of Law and Practice devotes only fifteen pages to the issue of search and seizure but in the 1932 version it runs 114 pages Stuntz doesn t see this as a good thing he accuses the Supreme Court of making the constitutional law of criminal justice into something narrower and less useful a constitutional law of criminal procedure The Warren Court doubtless acted with good intent but in criminal justice as elsewhere unintended conseuences often swamp the intended kindWhy is this so I ll explain but first let me take a step back To many a student of the law including this reviewer one with no affection for the Warren Court our constitutional criminal procedure is a bedrock of the American Way even liberal democracy itself Stuntz argues though forcefully that the procedural protections were a product of chance He traces them to a handful of high profile cases in the dusk of colonial America Yes so weren t most rights enshrined in the Bill of Rights and the original Constitution in response to narrow violations of rights under British rule They were but Stuntz points out that each case can be seen as a matter of protecting Free Speech a rather novel and dangerous concept at the time instead of a disparate collection of procedural rights for criminals Does Stuntz offer no protection for the accused then No but he points to substantive not procedural protections as optimal referencing the protection of substantive rights in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen suggesting that our procedurally oriented protections were a matter of chance fat lot of good the former did many French during their own revolutionReturning to my earlier point the rise of procedure during the Warren Court and importantly well before is important because it did not exist in a vacuum Contrary to popular wisdom the accused had real protection before said rise Stuntz points to Due Process and especially Eual Protection the earlier forms of which have really lost favor More important I think was the protection offered by a common law tradition firmly rooted in a reuirement of the reuisite mens rea or guilty mindThings changed Most of us are probably familiar broadly speaking with Prohibition begun with the 18th Amendment and ended with the 21st It s widely held as one of our great failures John Hart Ely mocked it as a misguided attempt at crudely touching substantive law with a constitutional system better suited for procedure Ely and Stuntz would have disagreed on much Stuntz sees it as a relic of history we should point to with pride Not because banning alcohol is a good idea it s a terrible idea But because Prohibition was honest The People wanted to do something That something uestionably couldn t be done constitutionally They passed an amendment to the Constitution through the prescribed means It didn t work They again amended the Constitution again it was through the prescribed means The People perhaps learned something about the inherent game of whack a mole that is vice prohibition Would be prohibitionists learned another lesson We saw many prohibition movements against opium against prostitution against drugs in general None were pursued through the channels Prohibition was despite their similar uestionable constitutionality uite the opposite What was while Prohibition never outlawed the possession itself of alcohol the new prohibitions freuently did soModern procedural protections started to pop up around this time as well culminating during the era of the Warren Court The timing belies the notion that these protections are rooted in the Constitution In context they look even like accidents of history They end up serving the rich and recidivists rather than the most vulnerable And who suffers the most when the inevitable backlash comes The poor the first time offender the innocent as any good defense lawyer will tell you the innocent defendant faces the distinct disadvantage that they don t know what really happened The Nixon revolution brings non Originalist jurors bent toward law and order but the law and order is long since a matter of faith by the time the next wave of Originalist arrives Meanwhile facing a crime wave Democrats are no interested in being soft on crime than Republicans are Substantive protections continue to wither way better to game the system than to lack a guilty mindAnd roughly there are depressing story rests Crime has been in a decades long freefall but incarceration rates remain astronomical The costs eat away at the public fisc and locking away so much of a generation of black male youth likely does harm to black America than any number of public programs and anti discrimination efforts could outweigh There is however reason for hope The taint of being soft on crime remains in theory but crime has largely left the public consciousness public ignorance of how much crime rates have dropped notwithstanding Both Democrats and probably better insulated politically Republicans have a new freedom to act It is with legislators that Stuntz pins his hopes I think he s overly optimistic a mass shooting or one other high profile incident can change so much On the other hand I think he s far too pessimistic on reform through the judiciary Judges on the Left have always had sympathies with the accused and are well insulated politically The Originalist argument and there is a strong one by Stuntz s own narrative although he doesn t admit it is a powerful one for judges on the Right similarly politically insulated from the usual charges of RINOismThere is so much to say but this review has already gone on far too long Much worth reading and revolutionary has been omitted or only touched on in passing I read this book uite some time ago putting the review off for another time Even all these months later though the heart if not all the details I fear a mistake lurks somewhere above bursts forth with all available vehemence It s changed my thinking and thoroughly so What could you ask of a book

Read Ò PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB Ç William J Stuntz

Read Ò PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB Ç William J Stuntz The Collapse of American Criminal Justice Free read ✓ 6 Rule of law has vanished in Americas criminal justice system Prosecutors decide whom to punish; most accused never. I received the book within the time period The condition of the book was as stated Very happy