I have to admit that watching Mike Nifong get disbarred was really a beautiful thing. To watch a man who spent his entire life prosecuting others who now finds himself the one being prosecuted is what “sticking it to the man” is all about.

The sad truth is that Nifong’s outrageous and illegal behavior is not as uncommon as people may believe. We have prosecutors all over this country who care more about appearing to be “tough on crime” to the voters than about actual justice.

We are building new jails and prisons in nearly all 50 states as fast as they can be built to deal with chronic overcrowding. That is because people are being sentenced to jail and prison at an unprecedented rate. This is not because the U.S. is suddenly experiencing an explosion in crime, but a direct result of D.A.’s who want to rack up as many convictions as they possibly can before election season rolls around.

The only reason the young men in the Duke case were able to keep themselves from being railroaded right into prison is because they had the money to defend themselves. The legal bills for the three duke lacrosse players totaled more than 1 million dollars each. If all you can afford is a public defender then I guess your just out of luck.

What happened to those boys could happen to anyone at anytime. It doesn’t have to be a rape accusation it could be anything, but a D.A. playing fast and loose with the truth could easily rob you of your reputation, your livelihood, and your freedom.

I think it’s a serious mistake to make D.A.’s and Judges elected officials, because these people are far to powerful to allow politics to be involved in there decision making. Its impossible for politics not to play a role in legal matters when the public can take your job from you if they don’t like a decision by simply not re-electing you.

Most recently politics reared its ugly head in the courtroom during the Paris Hilton case. The judge wanted to “make an example” out of Paris and look like some kind of sick hero to the community. So he gave her jail time and way more jail time than anyone else convicted of her crime. That is a fact look it up. Then the political firestorm that erupted after Hilton’s early release caused her to actually be put back in jail. So then a human being in this case Paris Hilton was caught in the middle of a contest between the Sheriff and the Judge to see who’s (fill in the blank) is bigger.

Any elected official who tells you that politics never play a role there decisions is quite simply lying to you. Forget that it was the Duke players or Paris Hilton, because the next time things get political it could be your life on the line.

I have always been suspicious of someone who would choose to put people in prison for a living, but Mike Nifong serves as a reminder that I have every reason to be suspicious and so do you.

Chris Jones is the Editor-In-Chief of popular news and opinion site The Hot Joints

E-mail Chris at webmaster@thehotjoints.com

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