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lumberjack_jeff

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Olympia, WA
Member since: Tue Nov 4, 2003, 08:02 PM
Number of posts: 33,224

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Blackstone's formulation

Is a fundamental principle of our system of justice; to protect its legitimacy, it's better to err on the side of caution and not punish the innocent even if some guilty people may go free.

Blackstone was a judge in England in the 1700's. He wrote:
"It is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer"


He wasn't the first though... that basic principle had been in place since the 1400's. In fact, the Salem witch trial judge, Increase Mather said, "it were better that ten suspected Witches should escape, than that one innocent Person should be Condemned.", and "I) would rather judge a Witch to be an honest woman, than judge an honest woman as a Witch,"

Ben Franklin was of the opinion that the proper ratio was 100:1. John Adams described the reason for this; '(if)it is immaterial to (a person) whether I behave well or ill, for virtue itself is no security.' And if such a sentiment as this were to take hold in the mind of the subject that would be the end of all security whatsoever". In other words, If justice is unjust and simply a matter of luck and caprice, there's no reason to respect laws at all.

On the other end of the spectrum are utilitarians who would say that it doesn't matter, so long as the mass of people are content, or authoritarians like Bismarck and Pol Pot (better to see 10 innocent convicted than one guilty go free) or totalitarians like the founder of the Soviet secret police ("Better to execute ten innocent men than to leave one guilty man alive." - because "When you cut down the forest, woodchips fly."). How about this from modern Columbia; "Better to condemn an innocent man than to acquit a guilty one, because among the innocent condemned there may be a guilty man."?

So, what's your personal "Blackstone's number"? How many guilty should go free to prevent injustice to innocents?
Posted by lumberjack_jeff | Fri Dec 6, 2013, 12:55 AM (9 replies)

Guys: How many of you have experience as a stay-at-home dad?

Kind of a three-part question.

It seems to me that the essential questions are:
1) are those who are in a position to consider that a realistic choice privileged?
2) do cultural norms/policy/institutions act to discourage men from making that choice?
Posted by lumberjack_jeff | Mon Oct 7, 2013, 03:58 PM (16 replies)

I got your "male privilege" right here.

This is the employment to population ratio among men 16 and over

This is the employment to population ratio among women 16 and over
Posted by lumberjack_jeff | Tue Oct 1, 2013, 12:33 PM (1 replies)

Nope. No misandry on DU.

You're right. Dad is off the hook, because he's not the one to blame.
Posted by lumberjack_jeff | Sun Dec 16, 2012, 03:04 PM (1 replies)
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