We have a weak link in our Criminal
Justice system here in Massachusetts. This is the way it works.
A criminal commits a crime. The police do their job and find and
arrest the criminal. The District Attorney's office does their
job, and brings the case to court and wins a conviction. Then
it reaches the Judge, and the Judge lets the criminal walk. It
just happened here in the infamous "Killer Nanny" case.
In most of the country judges are
elected to their positions, and must be reelected every so many
years. In most of the country, when a defendant is found guilty,
the JURY decides the punishment and does the sentencing. But not
Here in the Bay State the politicians
even have a lock on the Criminal Justice system. Here, Judges
are appointed to their jobs by the Governor, FOR LIFE! That's
right, the citizens of the state have no say in who is made a
judge, and the judge gets that job for life. Citizens have no
say in the sentencing of criminals either. Here, the Judge gets
to decide how the defendant is punished, or more often, not punished.
If we are not happy with the way
a Judge is doing his job, we have no recourse to remove that person
from their position. If we don't like the sentence the judge hands
down, we can't do anything about it.
This is, in plain and simple English,
bulls**t. Judges need to be held accountable for their actions
on the bench. We need to change the way we run the Criminal Justice
system in this state. We need to take the power to appoint judges
away from the Governor, and return it to the people. Judges shouldn't
get a lifetime job, they should have to be reelected to their
positions. Judges shouldn't be sentencing criminals, that should
be left to the Jury, like it is almost everywhere else in the