Roger W. Smith, comments on the criminal justice system

 

It seems that life is this way: some people are get screwed for no reason, while others lead charmed lives.

The government usually goes after the small fries. They will find something to nail some poor luckless person on, some offense the person supposedly committed that did no damage and caused no harm to anyone.

This makes law enforcement and prosecutors happy. They think it proves they are doing their job, getting arrests and convictions — it’s a resume builder for them.

It’s all bullshit and a total waste of time, does nothing to protect people or improve society.

Meanwhile, the people prosecuted and incarcerated have to suffer horrible deprivations for no reason, just because they were unlucky enough or stupid enough to get caught.

 

— Roger W. Smith, email to a friend, December 1, 2015 (commenting on the case of a businessman caught in supposed criminal activity; he was given a harsh sentence that is in effect a life sentence; he languishing in jail and is dying of cancer)

 

*************************************

re:

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/05/04/nyregion/sheldon-silver-ex-new-york-assembly-speaker-gets-12-year-prison-sentence.html

 

This story has upset me.

They have to have their pound of flesh.

The sentence is cruel.

I absolutely hate the “criminal justice” system:

lawyers

judges

jails

They make people suffer for no reason.

All so they can have cushy, high paying jobs and feel like they are “projecting” us and society.

The only people I can see an unquestionable need for locking up are serial killers and violent sexual predators.

 

— Roger W. Smith, email to the same friend, May 5, 2016, upon learning of the sentencing of ex-New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (New York Times, May 3, 2016)

 

*******************************************************************

 

They get off on making people suffer.

Maybe he [Sheldon Silver] was a crooked guy.

I don’t care.

His marriage is apparently finished.

He is 72 and they are giving him a 12 year sentence.

Plus a fine of over a million dollars.

There’s no need or reason for such punishment.

Supposedly, he has done things that caused harm. To whom? Are you or I any worse off because of him?

 

— follow up email, May 6, 2016

 

 

About Roger W. Smith

Roger W. Smith is a writer and independent scholar based in New York City. His experience includes freelance writing and editing, business writing, book reviewing, and the teaching of writing and literature as an adjunct professor. Mr. Smith's interests include personal essays and opinion pieces; American and world literature; culture, especially books and reading; current issues that involve social, moral, and philosophical views; and experiences of daily living from a ground level perspective. He hosts separate websites devoted to the authors Theodore Dreiser and Pitirim A. Sorokin and to classical music as well as family history/genealogy.
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