Derek Miller: How to build a society of second chances

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  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    Feb. 27, 2019 4:18 p.m.

    I agree with EDM. Let me bring up one more double standard.

    If someone has paid his debt to society, reformed, and is now due to erase his past mistakes and get on with working at any job without having to disclose his criminal mistakes, live wherever he likes without restrictions, then he ought to also be free to exercise his rights to own and carry a firearm for self-defense.

    Put another way, if a man cannot be trusted to own and carry firearms, (or to live his life without registering) why are we releasing him from prison, much less talking about letting him expunge his record?

    By all means, we need to make it easier for the reformed to make an honest living and be a full fledged member of society. That means not registering, being allowed to vote, and being allowed to buy and carry a firearm.

    This last right is lost for life over some relatively minor (ie misdemeanor) crimes. It is also lost for more serious, but non-violent crimes (such as non-violent felonies like insider trader, lying to the feds, cheating on taxes, and ponzi scheme thefts). Expungments must include full restoration of all rights, not just the rights that those on the left are comfortable with.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Feb. 27, 2019 11:34 a.m.

    It not about a restoration but a transformation.

  • EDM Castle Valley, Utah
    Feb. 27, 2019 9:21 a.m.

    I absolutely agree: Those who have paid their debt, “done their time”, absolutely deserve a fair shake at a new life. Yes, let’s get these people back on their feet, help them become productive citizens as soon as possible. Good for Derek Miller for supporting this.

    And yet, I’m certain we will continue to be quite happy with the most glaring double standard and despicable afront to due process in our generation - the State’s sex offender registry, our modern-day Scarlett Letter that marks a person for life.

    We need to be honest about why we allow this and recognize the double standard that it is. The reactions to my statement are predictable: “Sex crimes are different - nothing is more heinous than child abuse!” - and so on. No one disputes that the most heinous crimes should be met by the most severe punishment. But you cannot argue there is a greater need to know our neighbor-sex-offenders as opposed to drunk drivers, murderers, and kleptomaniacs. Sex crimes are just more interesting, that’s the difference.