My reaction to Art Hanger’s article Criminal justice – Not in Canada: I don’t believe that respect for rights and due process is the cause of coddling criminals. I agree there is something wrong with the liberal establishment’s philosophy that ignores concern for victims’ rights. I believe in restorative justice and restitution to victims. This idea is explained very well in Mary Ruwart’s book Healing Our World. I think criminals should be punished proportionally (not physically abused in prison by other prisoners). One of the points I notice about Canadian trials in the news is how information and truth is repeatedly suppressed for different reasons. I think this is horrible. I’m not impressed either with the false dichotomy of conservative vs. liberal “tough-on-crime” rhetoric. I don’t want to see enforcement for victimless crimes – I want the drug war abolished. I don’t want to see innocent people punished – those who cause no harm to others. As long as conservatives, liberals and Canadians of all stripes want to criminalize lifestyles and worship authority and the state rather than seeking real justice for individuals, justice isn’t going to improve.
September 16th, 2008