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Is our judicial system living up to its responsibility?
The creation of our judicial system throughout the country was a smart move by our founding fathers who knew we needed some checks against the other two branches of government. There are thousands of cases processed through our court system each year taking in some cases months to come to a decision. There are many issues some of which are controversial for which decisions are made. In other cases there are criminal proceedings which must be processed with a final decision made either by a judge or jury.
With regards to criminal proceedings there is a requirement within our Constitution for a speedy and fair trial but overall this aspect seems to be missing from our judicial system. It is right however, that any criminal proceeding provide a means of justice not only for the accused but also for any victims. Fair trials are the backbone of our justice system and no one wants any proceeding to be rushed through and come up with a bad decision or at least one for which the public may disagree.
Within our system of justice we have various levels of courts ranging from local state and federal. Judges who sit on the bench are either elected or appointed. It is important in any case that they be free from political interference regarding cases for which they are administering. Judges who are appointed sometimes sit on the bench without an expiration date and this has some benefits but it also has some negatives.
Judges at various levels must make decisions based on the laws affecting their level of authority. This includes local, state and federal laws. With respect to the Supreme Court in each of the states and at the federal level their limit of authority
In all cases they must comply with federal law as it applies to the cases they are administering. In addition they must conform to state laws as they apply to their cases. One point about complying with applicable laws in many cases if not all judges has discretion as to the sentences they can impose. This is where the question of whether our judicial system is living up to its responsibility.
Each case and circumstances are judged based on the facts surrounding the issue and in some cases it is decided by a prosecutor. If it is decided to not go forward with a case it should be based on the evidence not the political ramifications of the issues involved. There are two distinct levels of our judicial system one such as the Supreme Court has been discussed but the other is the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice and the Attorney General has a clear responsibility to enforce the laws of our country. Decisions regarding cases or developing cases should be based on actual facts not a political objective.
Recent information regarding violations of individual privacy by federal agencies or departments should be investigated by the Department of Justice. Some cases may or should require an independent prosecutor to determine the facts regarding specific issues. If the facts support prosecution cases should go forward, not ignored or postponed. Our rights under the Constitution should be protected at all costs and our justice system regardless of where the responsibility lies, individuals and/or agencies should be held accountable. Citizens need to have confidence in our justice system again and this can only happen if cases are properly handled through our court system.