The Pros And Cons Of The American Judicial System

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The American judicial system is one that convicts and incarcerates prisoners for various crimes. When a crime is committed, it is the judicial system’s responsibility to enforce and apply the laws. Under United States legislation, criminals are innocent until proven guilty in a court trial, but the judicial system during the twentieth-century did not properly give them fair trials. Instead, the court system convicted many prisoners guilty of crimes they “supposedly” committed. This situation created the start of a new and corrupt judicial system because prisoners did not have the chance to plead their case in court. Kate O’Hare, Jack London, and Assata Shakur provide an accurate and historical view of the American judicial system as unethical …show more content…
Although the Constitution states that all criminals are entitled to a fair trial in court and the opportunity to obtain a lawyer, this system illegally followed their own rules. Criminals in court during the twentieth-century were not given the chance to plead their case lawfully. During Jack London’s experience with conviction and incarceration, he witnessed that his trial consisted of “sixteen prisoners, the judge, and two bailiffs” (London 39). The court trial only contained about half of the officials that are needed. Convicts did not have a lawyer, nor an unbiased jury present for their convictions. Legally, convicts are given a lawyer to help plead their case in court, no matter if they can afford one or not. In Jack London’s court trial, “fifteen seconds and thirty days to each hobo. The machine of justice was grinding smoothly” (London 40). Each criminal in the court room received the same sentence in the same amount of time without the chance of pleading their case. Jack London was appalled at how the judicial system was functioning because “Here was I, under sentence, after a farce of a trial wherein I was denied not only my right of trial by jury, but my right to plead guilty or not guilty…But when I asked for a lawyer, I was laughed at” (London 41). The judicial system did not convict and incarcerate criminals ethically. Since they …show more content…
The unsanitary environments they lived in created an increase of the possibility of contracting diseases. The possibility of contracting a disease was high in Kate O’Hare’s prison experience because “The women who were too ill to work in the shop were used in the dining room. Practically all of them were tubercular and syphilitic” (O’Hare 83). Prisons allowed diseased individuals to work despite their disease; they did not care that disease was an issue. One prisoner in Kate O’Hare’s prison story had “open syphilitic sores dripping with pus” (O’Hare 82). There was no immediate reaction to preventing the spread of disease because prison is a place to endure brutal punishment instead of experiencing the thought of learning from mistakes. Prisons did not believe that criminals deserve proper treatment, sanitation, and living

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