Many years ago Judge Garrity in Boston and Judge Merhige in Richmond, Virginia, along with a number of other courageous Federal Judges made decisions that put their lives in jeopardy for many years. Unpopular would be a massive understatement for what they became in their own hometowns where they had once been heroes. The integrated the schools and started mandatory bussing. Their lives were in real jeopardy for the rest of their careers. The reason was that they made mandated and irreproachable decisions called for by the Constitution. They had to make them because the Governors, Mayors and politicians would not risk their jobs or their lives to do what had to be done, unpopular that it was.
Our legislature and our Governor will not act now despite having no reason other than their popularity (perceived) and eventual elections that must be decided in the future. None of their lives are in jeopardy and their absolutely mandated duty will soon be forgotten by even the most strident law and order supporter. They are going to leave their sworn duty to Federal Judge Donovan Frank, who by the way has always been properly tough on crime. You see, the State of Minnesota has a way to keep sex offenders off the street after they have served their time in prison for the crimes for which they have been convicted. They are, after a perfunctory hearing, committed to state custody for the treatment which is supposed to cure them. When they are cured they are to be released. We have hundreds of former prisoners in this treatment program which has been going on for years and years. The problem is that as of this writing only one person has ever been released and that person is strict supervision. Among the population there are women. There is no treatment program for women. Some of the “patients” have been held since they were teenagers. If nobody gets cured, there is no treatment program.
Judge Frank has had the case in front of him for years and has made a finding that it is unconstitutional to hold people in custody because they may commit another crime if you don’t do something to treat them successfully. Minnesota does not and has no plans to do so. Under the present system the population will continue to grow with no end in sight. The Judge has issued an edict to the State. Fix this program so that there is really treatment that reduces these people’s risk of reoffending or else. Other states do not have the same problem. We know that when Tim Palenty was Governor the director of the program, who had certified that a number were no longer dangerous, he issued an edict that it would never be done while he was Governor. The director serves at the pleasure of the Governor, or equivalent.
The State has put up a fight in front of Judge Frank and made all types of claims that they are working on the problem. He has cut through the nonsense not unlike General Sherman on the way to Atlanta. Their bleating responses are laughable because no sane person (maybe that is the answer) could make an argument that this is a constitutionally supportable methodology. In order for it to be a treatment program that meets constitutional muster their must be steps and achievements the patients make that ultimately can lead to release back into society. One must remember that there are only a small percentage of these people that are psychopathic (untreatable and unmanageable) and the rest must have a graduated methodology for graduation. Our Governor and our legislature know that revisions in the program to make it constitutional will not be met with enthusiasm by the public.
Meanwhile the Judge has allowed the Governor to appear in front of him for some reason I am unaware of. Judge Frank hears people out but this should be laughable. Dayton is used to speaking not answering questions. He is getting his answers from the lady that runs the program and has no idea what she is doing either.
I’m just saying