Pubdate: Sun, 22 Dec 2002
Source: Traverse City Record-Eagle (MI)
Copyright: 2002 The Traverse City Record-Eagle
Author: Cam McCord


This is in response to the Dec. 5 Our View titled, "Attorneys see the
damage, even if Judge Gilbert doesn't."

This has nothing to do with pot use. Millions of people have used it and
millions will continue to do so. Gilbert is simply a member of a corrupt
criminal justice system which is supported by a shortsighted media. I can't
help but shake my head when I read an editorial phrase such as, "Clearly,
Gilbert has lost the moral authority that is so central to the criminal
justice system."

Moral authority! Since when has the criminal justice system been a bastion
of morality? We live in a country that for centuries had legalized slavery -
government-sanctioned racism. Even after the abolition of slavery, our
criminal justice system supported and mandated segregation of the races
perpetuating black illiteracy and poverty. This "exceptional" system still
discriminates against minorities and the poor, offering them low-paid,
frequently unskilled court-appointed public defenders. It's amazing how much
trouble you can avoid when you're white and affluent. As if this weren't
enough, we now have prisons which are overflowing with non-violent drug
offenders who are of no threat to society. 

The system's insistence on fighting this failed "war on drugs" has allowed
it to justify the pursuit and conviction of non-violent drug users.
Meanwhile, those who are a true danger to society are allowed to lose
themselves amid the overzealous prosecution of drug-related offenses. 

The issue of Gilbert is simply the tip of the iceberg. He should resign -
but unless others are also willing to step down, his resignation is simply a
token measure. By stating this one-sided position, the media has failed to
recognize the other side of the issue, therefore significantly reducing its

Cam McCord

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