Friday, January 12, 2007

Justice from the Perspective of a Child Rapist

Bill O'Reilly covered a story tonight on his program 'The O'Reilly Factor' which told of a case in Vermont in which an admitted child rapist was placed on probation rather than given jail time. This is not a reference to the previous story referred to below involving Judge Cashman. Rather, this is another incident about which we will undoubtedly hear much more in days to come. Although we cover stories related to intelligent design, evolution, abiogenesis etc. I'm going to devote some attention to this for good reasons.

First, the offense itself is as repugnant as they come. It is an assault on the most defenseless and innocent among us and merits attention. Second, all of us have a stake in a morally responsible judicial system. The judiciary is more isolated from public opinion than the other branches of government and for good reasons. But it needs to be held accountable to standards of common decency. Our judicial system impacts all areas of life. When outcries against blatent abuse are muted you can rest assured that injustice, incidental to lower profile cases, will be evermore problematic. The following quote, which is intended to refresh some memories and inform others, was obtained from the linked website:

"The story began with a tragic case of sexual abuse and seemingly ended with a guilty plea in a Vermont courtroom. Thirty-seven-year old Mark Hulett pled guilty to aggravated sexual assault on his close friend's daughter. The attacks occured from the time she was six years old until she turned ten. In front of Judge Edward Cashman, prosecutor Nicole Andreson asked that Hulett be sentenced to 8-20 years in prison, but on January 4th, Judge Cashman surprised everyone there by sentencing him to only 60 days in jail and ordered him to complete sex offender treatment after his release. At the hearing, Cashman explained, "...[punishment] accomplishes nothing of value... and it costs us a lot of money." Hulett will be out in 2 months."

I've witnessed arguments from authority in previous encounters with attorneys. If you realized that... Oddly enough this does not go both ways. Critics unable to distinguish between 'The O'Reilly Factor' and a transcription factor are not hesitant to air their views about ID. I would hope that if the story reported by O'Reilly is accurate, we'll see some outrage from the legal community.


At 8:29 AM, Blogger Cephus Rocks said...

Doesn't everyone realize that those thinking that intelligence is the cause of life are the real dangers to society. No punishment for a child rapist and you're getting agitated? Are you some sort of Fundie?


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