This is a story a lot of people should read.  Such as SCOTUS justices.

I especially have in mind the last part of the article, which talks about the guy getting a pardon from the governor.  His point is that it’s extremely unlikely to happen, which is not my point.

My point is that however unlikely, the case described would be a proper use of the pardon power:  someone who is guilty but it’s all worked out too harshly gets “pardoned”.  Pardons are most emphatically not for the factually innocent.  They’ve done nothing to be pardoned for.  Cases that say otherwise are wrong.  Lawyers who say otherwise are wrong.

It is the court’s job, and only the court’s job, to make sure the innocent are not found guilty.  They cannot pawn this responsibility off onto the legislature or the executive, like they’ve done with just about everything else.

You might think otherwise from things I have written over the last few years on this blog, but I very rarely get angry.  For some reason, though, the suggestion that innocent people should seek a pardon from the governor or the president makes me very angry. (You have to read well into that rather long post to find the relevant part.)  It just disgusts me, the shirking of perhaps the only truly unarguable responsibility the legal profession has.


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