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The article I wrote on the problems with money bail is live now.

Guilty until proven innocent: the problem with money bail.


( 21 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 26th, 2015 08:37 pm (UTC)
I got depressed very quickly when I started reading this and almost put off finishing it until tomorrow; however, I kept with it and am happy I can go to bed contemplating a great alternative to the bail system, which, as you said, serves the rich, punishes the poor, and leads to a wealth of problems for people and society as a whole...without even touching on the expense it creates.

I'm not civic-minded enough, but I'm glad that there are others out there taking up my slack. :-/
May. 26th, 2015 08:42 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you stuck it out to the end and can go to bed hopeful!

[[unrelated note: the evening frogs have just started up, and it's only 4:40 pm]]

I'm not civic-minded enough either--it's people like Lois Ahrens and the founders of JusticeHome that are making a real difference. But every little bit helps!
May. 26th, 2015 10:17 pm (UTC)
That is crazy. No wonder the US has so many people in jail and spend so much money on it. Like Miq says; a very depressing read.
May. 27th, 2015 01:43 pm (UTC)
The US justice system is badly messed up. Fortunately, there are a lot of people working to change it.
May. 27th, 2015 02:00 am (UTC)
That looks like it was worth writing to me.
May. 27th, 2015 01:45 pm (UTC)
I was very glad to get it out there. Communities & Banking may not seem, from its name, like a very gripping magazine, but it publishes *lots* of stuff related to low- and middle-income community development in New England. And I'm no pro on the topic of bail reform, but I was able to pull relevant information together, and it gives the people who *do* do this stuff full time (or closer to full time) another article they can spread around.
May. 27th, 2015 08:51 am (UTC)
An excellent article... I hope it makes a difference!
May. 27th, 2015 01:45 pm (UTC)
Thanks--you and me both.
May. 27th, 2015 02:21 pm (UTC)
For justice to roll forth like waters, drops must be added to the cistern.
May. 27th, 2015 02:43 pm (UTC)
One and one and 50 make a million.
May. 28th, 2015 01:32 pm (UTC)
yes indeed
May. 28th, 2015 01:31 pm (UTC)
A lovely image, and true.
May. 27th, 2015 02:21 pm (UTC)
Great job!
May. 28th, 2015 01:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you <3
May. 28th, 2015 11:34 am (UTC)
Well written, presented, and documented. It isn't right to incarcerate the innocent. The question is scale. Will programs that seem to work scale to larger populations?
May. 28th, 2015 01:35 pm (UTC)
Washington, DC, has a pretty large population, and they have a no-money-bail program that's highly regarded, so I think so.

Edited at 2015-05-28 01:35 pm (UTC)
May. 28th, 2015 02:02 pm (UTC)
Bail is considered deterrence. Since there is a judicial penalty for failing to appear, why isn't that penalty sufficient deterrence? If you release a prisoner under bail or you release him without bail, he is still released. If a person is a threat to the public without bail, he is a threat to the public with bail. If one is a fugitive for failing to appear with bail, he is also a fugitive for failing to appear without bail.
May. 28th, 2015 02:15 pm (UTC)
What's at issue here isn't crime deterrence. Bail isn't about deterring crime; it's about ensuring that someone who's been charged with a crime (who may or may not be guilty of it) and who's released prior to a court date returns to court (rather than fleeing or simply blowing off the responsibility). What I'm advocating, and what the proposed legislation would support, is other ways to handle people prior to a court date. But it wouldn't permit the release of just anybody. If people were assessed as dangerous, or a flight risk, they would still be detained prior to appearing in court--and the wealthy ones wouldn't be able to buy their way out.

Currently, if you're very wealthy, like Remy, you can be charged with a violent crime, and because you can pay even a high bail, you can go free. Whereas, if you're poor, you can be charged with a nonviolent crime, and because you can't pay even a modest bail, you must await your court date in jail, which has bad consequences for you and is more expensive for society than other options.
May. 31st, 2015 04:17 am (UTC)
(Realizing after our email exchange that I had misunderstood you--my apologies again!)
May. 30th, 2015 10:09 am (UTC)
who knew not everybody hates prisoners, one of the childhood prayers I should have said more was to pray for those in prison. The stats are in some ways to India. Over 60 percent of those incarcerated are pre-trial or undertrial. India is far more overtly capitalist if you have money you shouldn't really ever have to go to prison. But they have VIP and VVIP rooms in prison too just in case people with money have enemies too. So yeah the Supreme Court issued some kind of you have to do this legal thing and it no longer became legal to detain even a poor person in India for more than half their sentence pre-trial or under-trial ie while they were innocent. Unfortunately the previous legal understanding was that it was illegal to detain someone charged with a bailable offence which if convicted carried a maximum of 10 years or less imprisonment for more than 60 days without offering bail and in cases where if convicted the maximum sentence is more than ten years it was illegal to detain them for more than 90 days. As you know my fiancee has been detained now for nearly 15 years still technically legally innocent and given the political nature of the charge whether found guilty or not she will continue to remain imprisoned. I note the average pre-trial detention in the USofA is 60 days you say. That's what the Indians were aiming for but in practice it varies from State to State nothing goes to trial quickly in India. One of the Ambani Brothers (India's Donald Trump) has a Murder trial outstanding from the 1970s. That's never going to trial. But because he is rich he is never going to prison either. But as people wot don't like prisoners will prolly think even if they can't write it out loud. They don't mind rich billionaires been given bail or their freedom by other means wot scares us all shitless is the thought that some big ignorantn black guy trying to sell our daughters drugs oops you gonna call me racist now. Hey have you looked into Scandinavian Countries. Dropping crime rate, prisons are emptying. They don't put you in prison till you are found guilty and then they tell you when the next slot in prison is convenient for them. It'll never work in theory but it seems to work in practice.
May. 31st, 2015 04:16 am (UTC)
It'll never work in theory but it seems to work in practice.

I love that. Reality is better than theory ALWAYS.

A society should be judged by how it treats its least-regarded citizens. Most societies receive low marks.
( 21 comments — Leave a comment )

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