Monday, February 14, 2011

No rights to marry for prisoners

Would you marry a man or woman that is in prison for second degree murder and a weapons charge?

Perhaps you would, but that shouldn’t be the determining factor here, because in a situation like this, it is not your choice alone. When there are two people that are free from prison or any other monitoring by state or federal authorities, they are free to associate with whom they wish. If they want to be married, they should be granted that wish by the state or the federal government without question. But, if one of the partners has misused the trust that is held by him or her in a responsible community by committing a major crime, that partner should lose all rights except those that enable him to fight the charge.

A Rochester Hills woman married a man that is in prison for second degree murder and other weapons charges. If he is not granted clemency or parole, he will be there for the rest of his life. He misused the trust of the community by committing these crimes. He should lose all his rights other than those necessary for his defense.

Should we let him out of prison because it is a beautiful Spring day? Or should we let him start a business, an operation that requires a great amount of trust between people? How about voting if he is still in confinement? No, no and no again. All those acts are granted only to those that the community can trust.

So why do we allow prisoners to marry? It is the relationship that requires the most amount of trust between two people.

On another point, the man is convicted of murder. His actions resulted in the death of another person. That person can’t enjoy the coming Spring, can’t get involved in a business and certainly can’t marry. If an individual’s actions have limited or permanently taken the rights of another person you should also not have any rights.

Allowing a person in prison to defend himself is an absolute right. But, once convicted he should have no other rights until he has served his term (by serving, parole or clemency) or, until he is proven innocent.


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