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Justice for all was something we all grew up in America believing and assuming to be true. However, that may not be true anymore. Diversity in judges is still a problem in America; the civil justice system is extremely backed up on cases to give each the attention they need and deserve; State and Federal Governments need to expand on services to help those in need.
Americans can have subconscious negative feelings towards someone of a different race. 2009 study found that only 10% of State Supreme Court Judges are non-white, according to usnews.com. Black and Latino candidates have a hard time winning elections and an even harder time winning reelections. Since 2000, white judges have had a 90% reelection rate, African Americans have had an 80%, and Latinos only have a 67% reelection rate.
How it works
Laws have not changed fast enough to match the need of our growing and changing culture. The justice system is such long and can cost thousands of dollars that it is no longer an effective way to help in legal matters. The system has become so dysfunctional that it’s almost impossible for people to rely on it to solve disputes. Courts are backed up with thousands of cases, and lawsuits take years and cost so much money, drain people psychologically, and produce outcomes not predicted.
State and Federal policymakers should shift focus from drug abuse punishments and address substance abuse. Also, reduce racial and ethnic disparities in jails and prisons. We need to provide equal access to justice with expansions of resources in the court system, short-term court costs available, and long-term treatment and job placement services. Community-based treatment facilities are more widely available in areas where some people can’t afford to travel far for treatment.
Crime rates in America, especially with youth crime rates, have drastically spiked. There have been more violent murders, school shootings, and serial snipers. The only thing they have done is hire more police officers. New York City has 61,000, which is approximately 3 billion dollars a year in salaries. They have thrown money at the problem instead of trying to fix it.
The judicial process should be to provide all the evidence prevalent to the crime, including physical evidence, witness statements, and criminal history. This all happened to have a fair verdict could be given by the judge or jury. The intent was never to wrongfully convict an innocent party or to acquit one who is guilty.
This is often not the outcome in today’s courtrooms. Certain personality types, educational backgrounds, races, and other factors could either help a prosecutor or defendant gain an advantage.
Our Pledge of Allegiance has the words “And Justice for All,” so there are people who believe that since it is stated in this that it must be true. There are also people who believe in the justice system and think that they do all that they can to help everyone. These people are the ones who usually have not had to deal with the justice system or discrimination before.
We are supposed to be the land of the free, and all be treated equally no matter our background. There is a lack of diversity among our judges when it comes to race. Our Justice System is incredibly flawed, and our laws have not caught up with our changing culture. There has been a huge spike in our violent crime rate in the past ten years, and our government has not shown any steps on how to improve this matter. Our courtrooms can be biased and not fair for all parties involved. Until our higher-ups in our government come together and make improvements to policies and laws, there will continue to be a problem with Justice for All in America.
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