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Ninth Circus Court Decides Criminals Can Vote, Entire American Legal System Racist

Crossposted at Ohio’s best political blog, Athens Runaway.

The other day, the most overturned court in the nation, the Ninth CircusCircuit Court of Appeals, decided that Washington state felons who are currently in jails across the state of Ecotopia Washington.  Because jails are racist.

Yeaaaaaaaaah.

According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer:

Under the Washington law at issue, citizens convicted of a felony lose the right to vote until they are released from custody and off of Department of Corrections supervision. The 2-1 ruling by a 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel puts those restrictions in doubt, the majority reviewing the voting rights lawsuit found that the state restrictions unfairly penalize minorities. [...]

Recent Department of Corrections figures show that about 28 percent of the state’s prison population is African-American, according to statistics cited in the suit. In contrast, African-Americans account for about 3 percent of Washington’s population.

[...]

“The disparities aren’t reflective of the actual participation in crime,” said Ryan Haygood, co-director of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, which participated in the suit. “They’re reflective of the discrimination in the criminal justice system.”

Speaking on the ruling, Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed said the court’s decision came as a surprise, in part because three circuit court panels elsewhere in the country came to opposite conclusions while reviewing similar cases.

Reed said he believes the state prohibition against prisoner voting remains appropriate.

“That’s part of the penalty,” Reed said. “A person loses their rights when they violate the rights of others by perpetrating a felony. … As long as when they get out they get a chance to rejoin society, that’s the important part.”

You hear that?  The entire concept of the American justice system is racist.  Add in some jokes about teabagging, and you’ve got a slow newsday over at MSNBC.

Back to the article:

Among the evidence offered to support the plaintiffs’ claims was a recent study on drug arrests in Seattle. The 2004 study, conducted by University of Washington sociologist Katherine Beckett, found that blacks and Latinos were disproportionately arrested on drug charges in part because of a police emphasis on street dealing of crack cocaine.

As a white person who’s concerned about his fellow man, I have a word of advice for those who are black or Latino, and worried about being arrested by the police.  We now go to Athens Runaway legal correspondent, Jim Carey.  Jim?

Thank you, Jim.

If said blacks and Latinos stopped selling crack cocaine, black and Latino felons wouldn’t be arrested for selling crack cocaine, and therefore would not be stripped of their voting rights while they’re in prison.  Also, as a result of this hypothetical stoppage of crack sales, the Ninth Circus Court would not have had this stupid-ass case to rule on.

THIS ISN’T ROCKET SURGERY.

However, according to the P-I, there is a bitter little ray of sunshine here.

As Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed observed, three circuit court panels elsewhere in the country (TRANSLATION: IN SANE PARTS OF THE NATION) came to opposite conclusions while reviewing similar cases.  For what it’s worth, the values of “saner part of the nation” are Florida, Massachusetts, and New York.

“That’s part of the penalty,” Reed said. “A person loses their rights when they violate the rights of others by perpetrating a felony.”

Here’s a clue-bat, idiots.  If your state makes Flori-duh, Taxachusetts, and the state that gave us Eliot Spitzer look sane by comparison, you are cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs.

Reed’s press release goes on to say that the state of Washington plans to appeal this case to someone who’s not a raging moron.

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