Saturday, April 18, 2015

Radley Balko's "quick and dirty" list of questions to be addressed to U.S. presidential candidates: (Some will undoubtedly be of interest to the readers of this Blog. HL);


POST:  "Are you running for president? Please answer these questions about the criminal justice system," by Radley Balko, published by the Washington Post on April 14, 2015. (Radley Balko blogs about criminal justice, the drug war and civil liberties for The Washington Post. He is the author of the book "Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America's Police Forces.")


 GIST: "The recent announcement from Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) that he’ll be running for president and an expected similar announcement from former senator Jim Webb (D-Va.) suggest that we may actually see some discussion of criminal justice reform on the campaign trail soon — at least during the primaries. To that end, I’ve put together a quick and dirty list of questions I’d like to see some or all of the candidates answer. I realize there’s little to no chance this will happen. But they’re worth throwing out there, if for no other reason than to generate some discussion........The list  of questions includes: 'President Obama recently formed a National Commission on Forensic Science to address the use of forensic analysis in the courtroom. This comes after a number of crime lab scandals across America in which analysts were caught fudging data, hiding unfavorable results, faking tests and in some cases just displaying general incompetence. It also comes after a 2009 National Academy of Sciences report, which found that in many forensic disciplines, analysts routinely give testimony in court that is unsupported by any scientific research. Currently, we have tasked judges with assessing the validity of scientific evidence. But judges are trained in law, not science. Do you agree that there are significant problems with forensic evidence? Do you think we should continue to ask judges to assess its validity? Would you support looking for an alternative system of distinguishing good science from bad before allowing it to be used in court? Do you believe an innocent person has been executed since the United State reinstated the death penalty in 1976? If so, do you believe this is an indictment of the death penalty, or that the benefits of capital punishment outweigh this risk?"
 
The entire list can be found at:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-watch/wp/2015/04/09/are-you-running-for-president-please-answer-these-questions-about-the-criminal-justice-system/

PUBLISHER'S NOTE: 

Dear Reader. Keep your eye on the Charles Smith Blog. We are following this case.
 
I have added a search box for content in this blog which now encompasses several thousand posts. The search box is located  near the bottom of the screen just above the list of links. I am confident that this powerful search tool provided by "Blogger" will help our readers and myself get more out of the site.

The Toronto Star, my previous employer for more than twenty incredible years, has put considerable effort into exposing the harm caused by Dr. Charles Smith and his protectors - and into pushing for reform of Ontario's forensic pediatric pathology system. The Star has a "topic" section which focuses on recent stories related to Dr. Charles Smith. It can be found at:

http://www.thestar.com/topic/charlessmith

Information on "The Charles Smith Blog Award"- and its nomination process - can be found at:
 
http://smithforensic.blogspot.ca/2013/12/the-charles-smith-award-presented-to_28.html
 
I look forward to hearing from readers at:

hlevy15@gmail.com.
 
Harold Levy; Publisher; The Charles Smith Blog;


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