Registry Matters is an independent production. The opinions and ideas here are that of the hosts and do not reflect the opinions of any other organization. If you have a problem with these thoughts, fyp. Recording live from FYP Studios, east and west, transmitting across the internet. This is Episode 127 of Registry Matters. Larry like how in the world so I know we’ve like talked about weather and it’s just kind of silly, but it’s snowing in May in the northeast.
It is I’ve never heard that.
My boss sent me a picture I think it was yesterday morning. Maybe it was Thursday morning of there’s snow on his deck and I know that it was snowing in Pittsburgh. This is I don’t think it’s supposed to be snowing around Mother’s Day. I don’t think unless you’re in like Minot, North Dakota or something.
So well. I’ve heard of May, we’ve actually had a little bit of snow here in my city in May. It’s not that uncommon in April, but it is pretty uncommon in May, but right now it’s 85 outside so we’re not having that problem.
Wow. Yeah, but you’re on the other side of the planet. I mean, like, you could throw a dart through the earth, and you would be on the other side of where I am,
If you say so.
I have to tell you a funny little story, and I want you to give me some feedback. I had to mail a letter today. And so I stuffed one piece of paper in an envelope and I addressed it and all things. And I was down to my last two stamps. So I put them both on there figuring I may as well use it up. And so I sent off my letter and I was just wanted to share that idea with you and see if you had any thoughts to get me back on what my process was.
So you would want to exhaust your stamp supply faster than what they would have exhausted?
If it’s going to expire, right? I mean, it’s forever but that doesn’t mean forever.
Well, I can’t follow the logic of exhausting. When you go to the store, assuming that anybody has cash anymore. Do you throw the little bit of cash you have left away? Because that’s all you’ve got? You’re down to your last dollar, your last five, do you toss it in the trash?
roundup man just you know, if you buy something, it’s $1 one just give it to them and say Keep it.
I do actually you know that I’m trying to be silly with this other thing but for real you have cash and now we have moved into like, I’m not touching anything that anybody else has touched so I will go 100% I don’t even want to hand them my credit card or debit card to pay for stuff. You can do tap to pay where you have your phone and you just like touch the terminal with your phone and it charges you and you never touch your hand anybody anything. Cash is dead man This has killed it.
I would say it’s certainly adding to the decline of cash. I was at a chick-fil-a couple weeks ago and they would not touch my card they had gloves on, they handed me the device and said run it yourself.
Haha, YOU do it. You people do it. Is that what you said?
That’s what they told me to do. they handed me the thing. He didn’t actually let go of it but he put it toward the my window and said process your own transaction.
All right. Well, I think that’s enough goofing off for us. I gotta make sure the scene switcher is switching off of me here in a second. Well, it will it work? Will it work first try, Larry? That’s the question.
Of course it will.
Of course it will? Our first article comes from Law 360. Cops sued for forcing sex offenders to appear amid COVID-19. So tell me if, you shouldn’t have to go appear because all the people in the office could be infected with all of the things and you’re under a lockdown order but they’re still like, dammit, you’re coming to the office no matter what.
Well, I don’t think there’s, this was from Fresno, California. And I don’t think there’s a universal answer out there even within the state of California. I would, I would say that people need to look at their health orders carefully and see what has been exempted from the stay at home order and if there’s not an exemption for going to the registry office, my position personally would be that you’re not allowed to go by virtue of the health authoritie’s declarations and proclamations and instructions. So I don’t think a lawsuit’s necessary. Now, having said that, I’m not the one that’s facing a potential prosecution. And we have people who are just terrified because the penalties can be very significant. So they get on their phone and they call and they say, Do I have to come in? Well, the answer is, well, the law hasn’t changed. So of course, you have to come in and they’re right. The law hasn’t changed the law. This pandemic came so quickly, that legislators didn’t say, oh, my goodness, we’ve got to convene a special session so we can figure out how to make sure the sex offenders don’t have to come in person. I mean, that never crossed their mind. And even when they’ve drafted these orders, that never crossed their mind. They were thinking about schools and businesses and universities and, and senior citizens and they weren’t, I mean, Sex Offenders never entered anyone’s thought process because that’s the last thing, the lowest things important to you would think about. But my position is if your order is clear, and it says you’re not allowed to go out except for these exceptions, that it’s not one of the exceptions listed. You’re not allowed to go register.
And so here is a lawsuit being filed to I think we had a guest on that was talking. I don’t know if it was on air or off air that well, who do you call when you have these grievances? Who is supposed to heavy air quotes here, judge what is okay to be done if something isn’t clear?
Well, I think the law is clear. The law, the statutory language is clear in terms of what each offenders required to do in the various jurisdictions. You either have to come in in person or you have to mail in a form, those obligations are clear. What’s not so clear is that those laws are being impeded by a health pandemic that none of us have ever lived through before. Actually, we did live through it in 1918. But, but most people listening, other than me have not lived through one of these pandemics, and we didn’t do this back in 1918, everybody went on with life pretty much as usual. But there’s lack of clarity in terms of the power of a health order because they don’t implement they don’t invoke those powers. I mean, how many times have you been ordered, or strongly urged to stay home in your life by anything related to government that you can think of?
I mean, short of if you had some sort of home arrest sentence, No, I’ve never had but I you know, something like that would exist, but that’s on the individual. We haven’t said the whole state shuts down.
That is correct. So we’re in uncharted territory in terms of what the law is. We know what the statutory law is. If it says you need to come in every 90 days, within three days or a birthday or whatever, we know that But what we don’t know, as if there has been a global pandemic, and all your officials have said, I’m ordering things shut down. And the only exceptions are these things here on this list. And we don’t know if you invoke that yourself and say, Okay, I don’t see going to the registry office as an exemption. So therefore, I don’t feel like I can go without being in violation. So I would, if I were required to register, I would mail the registry office a letter and say, in view of, and I would cite the date of the order, and the language of the order, I would say, I’m not allowed to be out because this is not one of the exempt activities. It’s not grocery shopping, it’s not medical, and that whatever the litany of exemptions are, you’re not one of them. So therefore, I’m not allowed to do this. And but please be aware that nothing has changed. And if you have any desire to verify, feels free to call me, email me or whatever it means the communication that people use these days. There’s all these snapchats and things I don’t even understand or do. But that’s what I would personally do. But I’m not recommending anybody do that. I can only speak for what I would do.
And were you to file a challenge, what degree of success do you think would go behind it?
I would never file a challenge on this. I don’t see the point. As far as I’ve just said, I think the position is, look at your health order, and see what it says. And if you’re not exempt, why do you need a challenge? If going to the registry office wasn’t listed, then you’re not allowed to go. So I would never file a challenge. I would let them file the challenge.
You would put them on the offense so that you didn’t show up? You would be the registrant the PFR. And you would make them say, well, we’re hauling you into court.
That is correct.
That you got you got locked up already. And now we’re filing charges against you because you failed to show up and then you say hey, look, here’s the governor’s order that said you weren’t on the list. So I didn’t show up, eff you.
well remember I outlined another step, I would send them a letter in advance of the day that I was supposed to be there. articulating that I won’t be there, nothing has changed. Here’s why I won’t be there. And if you have any thing you’d like to verify, don’t hesitate to contact. But for health reasons, I will not be checking in with you in person until this order is lifted. That’s what I would do. There is no jury anywhere in any of the 57 states that’s going to convict a person if they are under a health order, and that that activity is not exempt. Now, I don’t even think that anyone would file a prosecution. Now, we could have Ashley come on, we can have anybody who’s been a prosecutor. I can’t say what a sheriff’s deputy or a police officer would do. They’re a little bit less predictable, but once the Sheriff files the charges, someone, have you ever seen a sheriff present a case in court? Have you ever seen the sheriff be the attorney representing the state of Georgia or the state of Illinois or any state? Have you ever seen the uniformed officer get up say when they when the when the judge says, counsel for the party state your appearance, have you ever seen the sheriff stand up and state his appearance on behalf of the State?
No, I don’t I’ve only seen the Butts County knucklehead do his thing when we sued them, but he had no attorney.
Yes, but the sheriff did not represent the state of, the sheriff was a witness. You have to have a prosecutor willing to bring the charge. And I still have some faith in humanity. I do not believe that a prosecutor would bring such a charge when there is an order saying you cannot be out in public except for these things. And that’s not on the list in the except for
you know, and I just had a question I wanted to ask you about that. And then it left my brain. Why does this always happen?
Because you have dementia.
Dementia. Maybe I should Replace the picture of me with the picture of you? Dammit, I had a question. Oh, here, here’s what I mean, my point was going to be that had you moved a month, six months ago, you would have already gone into the office and updated your information already. This whole little thing around your birthday, three days, whatever, you know, for different states of doing it. In addition to that you were already required to do it whether you changed your car changed your internet identifiers, all that stuff, you’ve already gone into the office to notify them of these changes anyway. Right?
Well, well, but that doesn’t, that doesn’t lift the law that if it requires you to come in every 90 days or every 30 days or every 10 days or seven days for a homeless person. But but like i’m saying i don’t i don’t think that that a prosecution is very likely. But I can’t guarantee it. So everybody that’s listening. I’m not suggesting you do anything. I’m only telling you what I would do. And from the traction that these court cases have gotten that have been filed. I’m not aware of anybody getting a whole lot of traction with these court cases. And I think this would be a good time to answer Will’s question that we answered last week and in chat. And if we could, if we could do that, that’d be great. So we’re while we’re on the subject.
Yeah, totally. Do you want me to unmute Will? Will are you prepared? Or should? Should we just sort of recap it?
If he can do a succinct question, let’s just let him ask his question about the disparities.
Well, I’m starting my timer. I’m going to unmute you and you have 60 seconds to make your case. Will welcome to Registry Matters. How are you doing?
I’m doing well, Andy, and thank you for having me on. And to get to it. I was just wondering how they justify the different rulings in different areas of California. Yes, some sheriff’s are saying we’re stopping reporting. But then you have judges in other areas saying no. And I was just wondering why there’s a difference if the statute applies across the state. Why can one area exempt it and the other not?
That’s a great question Will and we talked about it privately last week, actually not privately but in the after-chat, and what people need to recognize that there’s very few things you can order an elected official to do. As far as, as far as I’m concerned, a sheriff who’s elected in his or her own right, they can’t be ordered by anybody else to do anything. The the sheriff, the sheriff has the law book, and they have an obligation to enforce those laws. And having said that, that obligation does not mean that there’s no discretion. And let’s just give a hypothetical. If the sheriff has a car pulled over, and another car whizzes by at 95 miles per hour, and the speed limit is 55 miles per hour. And the car whizzes by, okay the sheriff saw the car go by and it blew the, there’s so much wind coming that almost knocked him off the medium and into the into the embankment, so he clearly has the duty to keep the public safe. But the person he’s got pulled over appears to have an outstanding warrant for a felony. So the sheriff in his or her discretionary discharge of their duty, they decide to maintain the contact with the person who appears to have a felony warrant. And they let the person driving 95 miles an hour keep going, that may kill somebody up the road. But that is a whole different thing than the sheriffs when they say that they have to enforce the law, yes, the laws on the books. The California assembly said that you have to do these processings once a year, twice a year, whatever the frequency is, and they prescribed that. But also the sheriff has discretion to say well looking at my current situation, I can’t risk my personnel. Therefore I’m not going to do that. I’m going to minimize the danger to my personnel and I’m not going to have the the the in person contact and in order for that to be ,for you to bring an action against the sheriff, first of all, we would need someone who has standing. And I do not believe that anybody who’s on the sex offender registry they would have little standing. I doubt very many people in the registry except for maybe some, one person in Georgia might, but would bring an action saying that I demand to be able to come in in person. So therefore, the most significant party would have standing. I doubt anybody would file a complaint saying I demand the right to register in person. Then you got to look around who else would have standing? Well, perhaps the Attorney General of the state might have standing if the sheriff is being derelict in their duty. I don’t see an attorney general bring in any type of action to remove a sheriff for dereliction of duty because the Attorney General is also an elected person and the Attorney General is not going to say well, I demand that you will put your deputies in the line of COVID-19 and you will process these people in person or I will seek to have you suspended or removed from office. I don’t see anything bad happening to to a sheriff who decides that therefore we’re just going to do the telephonic. So that explains the disparities. You’ve got some gung ho sheriffs, who believe it’s in their political interest. And by golly, I read the book and it says, I gotta go right by this book, and I’m gonna do it because that’s what I swore on the Bible to do. And you’ve got others that look at it and say that they’re not going to jeopardize their personnel. But there’s nobody, the California in my opinion, I don’t know the California law inside out. But it’s very difficult for an elected official to be ordered to do anything. the people who give elected officials their orders are the people who elect them. Who would be the party that would order the sheriffs to do anything? I don’t think the governor has any direct power over the sheriffs. I know in this state, the governor has no direct power over the sheriffs. They have the power of the purse with funding that they can dangle funding or lack of funding, but the government can’t order a sheriff from New Mexico to do anything. But anyway, I hope that answers the question somewhat that the disparities are simply because the people who run these jurisdictions are taking a different view of their obligations, and some are being more aggressive and they’re willing to put their people at risk and some are being more compassionate, both about the offenders and the risk of their personnel. And it’s just that simple. But the courts are largely staying out of it from what I’m hearing. I’m not aware that there has been any judicial orders shutting these people down from in person processing? Have any of these cases worked Andy?
I don’t think so. Where the judges have told Sheriff to do a thing?
On these, there’s been actions filed particular in California seeking does not stop a person… have any of these litigations, have any of these worked?
I think they’ve doubled down on it, I believe. So Will does that answer your question?
It answers it very well.
All right. Well, thank you. And we appreciate you attending the live stream of Registry Matters.
Any other closing thoughts on that concept there, Larry?
Well, I hope it covered it well enough. But we’ve got so much content.
If not, we can circle back.
Yeah, we better get moving. We’ve already been on an hour.
Just about, um, what are we going to do with this Michigan smarmy thing? I think I have a voicemail from Will about it, who we just left and then I also have like some comments from the chat that I had with him talking about it. Can I can I play this voicemail message?
Fantastic. Let’s do it.
Will (Voicemail) 18:39
Good evening, Larry and Andy, this is Will from Tennessee. And I received an email today from cureSORT from Wayne Bowers, and tomorrow, not a week from Wednesday as I originally thought but tomorrow, the Michigan legislature is going to have a committee hearing the Judicial Committee on House Bill 5679, which is their new registry law. And it doesn’t look like it addressed very much of what judge Cleveland had targeted with his ruling. And they’re having this meeting this hearing during a time when they know people cannot be present to publicly discuss and debate the law. There will be some people there. Some will be able to speak online. But this is being done, if you asked me, in a very underhanded sneaky way, and I just wanted to call and give you guys a heads up of what’s going on and find out what your take on this is Larry, it just seems awful underhanded to run this through when people can’t be present to discuss it when there’s such a broad interest in it right now. But thank you for what you do. And to all you wonderful people out there who think this registry is such a wonderful thing, you’re such friendly young people have a great day.
He’s still just very resistant to actually saying fyp and understanding what fyp stands for.
That’s why you should never have told him
Maybe Oh, that’s right if he would never have known then he would just run around ignorantly saying fyp going ah it just means friendly young people but he would say fyp, haha. also Will used a term that I need some explaining. He said, smarmy I’ve never heard this word smarmy.
I have I haven’t heard it either. So I’m not familiar with that. Must be…
He said it means underhanded and shady and like sneaky backhanded He say. so did the house get together and go Hmm, we’re gonna wait till this pandemic occurs and we know that nobody will be able to come to the state capitol to oppose this. So we are going to ramrod our new Sex Offender Registry law into place while no one can oppose it.
I really don’t think that’s what’s happening. What’s happening in Michigan is that and now remember, I’m looking backwards now, but I was also looking forward at the time. What what’s happening now is, is the culmination of all the strategy that went to putting us where we are now, the legislature their back is to the wall, the federal judge is about to have the registry go dark. And I think they gave him some additional time because of the pandemic. But there was a date certain established where, that they can no longer enforce the registry. And I said all along that until that day comes that there would be no incentive to legislate because the registry was still being enforced. Why would you want to legislate because if you’re happy with the way it is, and the only thing you would want to legislate to do to maybe to make it tougher, there would be no incentive to make the registry less tough and since the court is already concerned about it being too tough, the politically smart thing to do is to do nothing, which is what they did. And then there was a date certain where the registry is going to go dark. So now they’re faced with a much more difficult choice. They can do absolutely nothing, and let the registry go dark. And they can take their political hit for that. Or they can try to save as much of the registry as they possibly can, which is what I predicted a long time ago that that’s what they would try to do. they’re going to try to save as much of the existing infrastructure as they possibly can. And it may result in another court challenge. I don’t know. I glanced through this bill, I did a quick scan. And I don’t see that it makes much any better. So there may be another court challenge. But if they pass this and I expect there’s a good probability they will because the other choice is so horrendous that it’s thinkable to let the registry go dark. If they pass this, then there may be another challenge. There would have to be another challenge because it would be presumed constitutional upon the governor’s signature. And Gretchen is not going to veto it. It will pass unanimously and she’s not gonna veto, she would not veto it. Governor Snyder wouldn’t have vetoed it. Governor Blanchard wouldn’t have vetoed it back in the 80s. Governor Belkin, wouldn’t have vetoed it in the 70s. I mean, if it gets to their desk, they’re going to sign it.
Doesn’t that say something? So the judge says, You can’t make felony jaywalking, a thing because it’s unconstitutional. Well, then they turn around and they write that into the new law. The judge has already ruled that this thing can’t be put in place and can’t be enforced. But the legislature turns around and writes the exact same thing and maybe they say tomAto, not tomato, but they write the exact same thing into it and that is also presumed to be constitutional because the legislature does it?
Well, but let’s dissect that. First of all, I really don’t like that felony jaywalking, because there’s no such thing.
I think there’s the the residency restriction kind of thing in there and that got ruled to be not enforceable.
that will probably not survive for the people who are within that zone. They would not put that Back in there. But the tiering system, for example, where they tiered the offenses, the tiering could still be done as long as you didn’t lengthen the time of their registration retroactively. So they could still potentially have the tier system that they have. And they could say you’re a tier three, but you will still get off under, you will be released from registration under your previous term of registration. And that would survive. I think that would be more likely to survive, but they could just take the tier off. And have you, have the older people have a tier, remove their tier designations, and put them back to the original amount of time they had. There’s all sorts of things they can do. But the judge never said you can’t have a registry. The court didn’t say that. they the judge found that the enhancements in 2006 and 2011 elevated what was a civil regulatory scheme to become punitive. And people want to imagine somehow that that means you can’t have a registry. You can have a non-punitive registry, you can actually have a registry that is non-punitive. Up until Does verses Snyder was decided every previous court that had looked at Michigan’s registry had found it to be non-punitive. It was only when they couldn’t stop piling on. Okay, well, well, why can’t they go back? The judge didn’t say you can’t have a registry. The judge said you can’t do these things to these people retroactively.
And isn’t that the point of, I mean, that’s not the point I’m trying to make. If they said they can’t do residency restrictions, the internet identifiers and I’m speaking mostly from what I remember a conversation being it, I didn’t I don’t know all the things that were in there and what are coming back, if the judge said you can’t, these are the things that made it go beyond the threshold. And the legislature goes back in there and says, Okay, well, we’re gonna call this one slightly different, but it’s the same thing.
I don’t think it is. I don’t think it’s the same thing for the for the old people. I think like I say, think that there taking off the residency restrictions, the proximity restrictions for the people who predated for the retroactive, and I think they’re taking the tier. We could have, have someone from Michigan Come on, and that would be a good thing to go get into once they pass this, we can get into the nuances. But that’s, the point I’m making is that people got their hopes up, we had a guest on the show that said they could just let those people go, they’re not going to do that. And I hate to be the bearer, they’re not going to do that.
Yeah, they’re not just going to let it go dark. But you know, we could go back to whatever 1990 version of the registry where you just sort of showed up and said Hi, here’s my stuff. It hasn’t changed and you walk out of there. I really do love the term disabilities and restraints. I think it’s incredibly effective at what it is.
And they, they are taking steps to try to do… their incentive, the politicians who face the wrath of the voters. Their analysis would be, let’s do no more than we have to do. And we can point our fingers at the court and say, this is what we had to do to keep the registry alive. That would be the political analysis. And I don’t make those rules. I’m just telling you what they are.
I think you should make rules Larry
People get mad at me when I tell them. You’ve got to change the way the public feels about registration. If you really want the results that you claim you want, because they are responding to what the citizenry is telling them that they want, which is to keep tabs on these horrible people.
And people would immediately take exception to saying that they’re horrible people
That’s, I’m speaking for what the public is saying. That is what they’re hearing from their, from their constituents. And what are they supposed to do when their constituents are saying keep tabs on these horrible people? Are they supposed to say you go to hell?
I know. They’re, they’re in a rock and a hard place too, even though they could be sitting there saying, well, all the evidence says that there’s no point in doing this. It doesn’t increase public safety, but the public wants it and they think it makes them feel better. And I would like to be reelected. So what are they supposed to do?
Well, I would like to have an episode where, because we seem to have this constant tension about when you’re supposed to be responsive to constituents. So I’d like to know, when you’re supposed to represent your constituents and do what they want. And when you’re supposed to flip the burden, and say, fyp. This is what the people want. In a representative Republic, that’s kind of what our system is designed around is to represent and provide the citizens their avenue to get the governance This is government of for and by the people. Hello?
Right. And Brenda brings up an interesting point in chat, she says isn’t Will’s question about the hearing is happening when it’s hard for people to show up to testify? But she thinks it’s cool that a bunch of advocates did show up and testify.
I think that of course it’s hard. When we’re in a global pandemic. What are they supposed to do shut down all government and say, well, We’re not gonna deal with budgetary crisis, we’re not gonna deal with health crisis, we’re going to shut down the legislature. This is something that they feel that they must deal with because they’ve got a date cert that they have they have to deal with this. And as I don’t, yes, it’s inconvenient. But they’ve provided as Will said in the question, they provided other options. Nothing stops you from writing or calling or emailing your lawmaker. Nothing stops you from going on the Michigan legislature and looking up every member of the House Judiciary Committee, since this is a house bill, I’m assuming it’s in the house. Nothing stops you from doing that. Does it?
I understand? I don’t I don’t think so. I mean, yeah, you’d still pick up the phone. I mean, we’re all trying to do our physical distancing. And we’re making zoom calls and phone calls, and, and so forth. And, I mean, we had to move you to the other side of the world so that we can have our particular distancing. So yeah, I mean, this is, this is what you’re supposed to be doing.
And the reality is that very few show up anyway, in the case of Michigan since there’s been so much litigation, without the pandemic, perhaps more may have shown up. I don’t know that but in reality when these things are heard, Brenda knows she’s been to Annapolis enough times the victims advocates outnumber, many times over the law enforcement apparatus and the victims advocates when they call for testimony, the whole room is tilted to one side and then you call for the people in opposition. There’s two there. There’s the public defenders and and and perhaps fair, but but that’s the way it is across the country.
Let’s move over to an article from courthouse news. says college sexual assault rules change to give more rights to accused. Uh, I thought that we were just supposed to believe the alleged victim that their story is 100% true and we should drive a bus repeatedly over the person that is being accused of these crimes.
That is that is apparently has been the standard, but now with a vice former Vice President Biden being accused now there’s apparently a new standard evolving. And that is apparently now that we take the accusation, and we now investigate. what a concept andy we investigate allegations of criminality. Wow.
Hmm. And this would be based on your accuser gathering evidence, taking testimony and so forth to try and build a case against the person being accused of to see if it still holds water? I guess would be an expression.
remember, the accused doesn’t have to do anything.
Correct. I’m with you. The burden of proof is all on the accuser.
always under our system, the accuser, bears the burden of showing by proof beyond a reasonable doubt that what they have accused this person of is true. And we’ve turned that upside down in the area. And I don’t I don’t often say good things about the Trump administration, but I support this 100%. And I find…
Can you remind me what beyond a reasonable doubt means.
I don’t think we ,there’s no legal inter- It’s it’s the proof that, you know…
Doesn’t that mean that the 11 out of 12 or like, you know, I sort of thought that that might mean like unanimous jury?
Well, in most in most instances, that does mean unanimous, but but some of the quotes here, I encourage people to read this I mean, the quotes from the Democrat Party, that this is so heinous, according to Pelosi, I respectfully disagree with madam Pelosi. I don’t think this is I don’t think this is so horrible at all.
Anything specific you’d like them to point out? I mean, you know, it’s not it’s not a terribly long article take you two minutes to read it. Just wondering, is there anything specific about anything you want them to focus on in there?
Well, unfortunately, it’s the Democratic Party appears to be on the wrong side of this issue. But the way Pelosi and Adler are talking to this is going to be I mean, this is setting back victims or survivors by 100 years. So, but I totally vehemently disagree. I think it’s restoring the proper balance, or at least getting us closer to that proper balance, and Pelosi slammed the rules as callous, cruel and dangerous, threatening to silence survivors and endanger vulnerable students in the middle of a public health crisis. End of quote.
I see I see. All right, well, reason magazine, and then I don’t know 45 other articles. For those of you who are PTSD over all of the COVID article So here’s your, I don’t know, 20-minute trigger warning that we’re going to cover some COVID stuff for a little while, but this first one is probably on at least the positive side. Lawmakers call out Cuomo and other governors for letting prisoners die of COVID. This covers like AOC and other legislators bashing the various governors saying that, like they’re not letting you know, there’s some sort of token number of people being released. No significant number of people being released from prison from for being old for being some level of compromised health, very minor offenses or even like, hey, you’re getting out in three weeks. Why don’t we just let you out now? No, it’s a it’s a kind of cool article calling them out.
I I appreciate that. Most issues with criminal justice that the Democratic Party typically is on the right side, those Democratic governors who have the power they have been very timid and I know that they’re concerned about political consequences. But Sometimes you have to do what the captain did that was rescuing on those sailors in the shark infested waters in World War Two. You just have to do it. And the governors they’re just not doing they’re not exercising the powers that they have.
Wouldn’t this be equivalent to, going back to the legislators in Michigan that they’re going to be held to the fire come election time in two or four, six years that, you released all these horrible criminals from prison during this thing, like you could have left them in there, we didn’t want them on the streets to begin with. Now our safety is compromised along with our health, blah, blah, blah?
That is always a real possibility that that that would happen. And I think you have to you have to tell your constituents that when I put my hand and took the oath. I swore to do follow the law. The law gave me the power and I think it was the right thing to do. Your judgment will ultimately vindicate or you will sink I will, I will fall to but but you can’t politicize everything at some point. You just have to do the right thing. And our democratic governors, I don’t expect much other republican governors because we’re going to get to an article later. So I’m calling I’m calling out the Democratic governors who profess, who profess to be about reforming the system. And who profess to hold compassion in their heart. Like I said, I wouldn’t expect much from a southern governor, because they’re all republican, I wish they would They would deliver more, but I don’t expect much, but I expect more out of Mario’s son, I expect more out of out of Cuomo I expect more out of Noosum.
Yeah, and on that I’m going to highlight the asshat of the night is the Mississippi governor says pandemic is no excuse to release inmates. Mississippi governor Tate Reeves said Wednesday that the state will not consider early release for prisoners during the Coronavirus pandemic. Even with inmates living in conditions that make social distancing difficult. Eff You on this one, you’re just being. I have a lot of words that I would like to say, Larry, and I’m not gonna say them.
Well, he, I mean, he makes one semi valid point. He says that it’s not his job to rewrite the sentencing of the state. his job, that’s a legislative function. But he has a, he has a crisis in Mississippi to begin with. If I’m not mistaken, their prisons are running a significant capacity issue already. prior to this They’ve had deaths. I think we’ve talked about this podcast. He’s got a prison system in chaos before this comes along. And he’s, he’s absent, as far as I can see, in terms of trying to take any proactive steps to deal with but he said that cell phones were the problem, remember?
Yes, yes. Yeah. Oh, yeah, that’s right. He did say yes. Because of the cell phones. We had riots no, people use the cell phones to document the shitty conditions that you had your prisons in. That’s probably what created the riots.
But I’ll just give you some proportionality about our state has a population of 2 million. We have roughly 6,800 in custody and our state prisons, Mississippi has a population of 3 million, which on a per capita basis, that would add 50%, so they would go from from 7,000. So you would their prison population would be a little over 10,000. Mississippi has more than 18,000 prisoners in custody. And they’re they’re one of the highest incarceration rate of incarcerations in the in the in the nation. And I have to conclude that either Mississippians are predisposed to commit crime and that’s all over the South. that happens the same in Louisiana happens the same in a lot of southern states. Either Mississippians and southerners are inherently criminal by nature, or there’s something about the south that’s different because they have this fixation on incarcerating at such a high level compared to the rest of the country.
You know, I used to live much further south. I used to live in New Orleans for a long time and I worked at a job where we would travel across all the southern states. And every time I crossed into Mississippi, I just had this overwhelming compelling, like, energy that I needed to do horrible, terrible criminal things. So maybe Mississippi does have some sort of aura around it that makes people do criminal things.
I never knew that.
Yep, it’s totally true. That’s fact. You could go find it on Alex Jones and Infowars for sure. Cuz That’s reliable information. Then over at slate. Other countries’ courts are treating the prison pandemic as a real emergency. US prisons’ COVID-19 response lag behind countries such as Tunisia and Palestine hmm those are first world like those are very progressive kinds of countries I think.
I didn’t even know we had a country named Palestine. Did we know a country named Palestine? Where’s that?
I do not believe so but do you recall, nine ish months ago, we covered an article. And it said there were 205 countries made some number like that. And I had just recently read that there are 195 countries. And I’m like how do we have a disparity of 10 something countries? I know that like Eastern Somalia is like the newest country when the two, I want to say it’s small. Yeah, it could be. I don’t think it was Sudan, maybe it was Sudan, one of those two split in the last decade. I was like, that’s the newest country. we have 195, but maybe it’s recognized countries by the UN?
A lot of recognition has been afforded to the Palestinian Authority. The problem with the Palestinian Authority is you have you have split authority, you have the west bank of the Jordan River, where the Palestinian Authority is controlled. Then you have the the the Gaza Strip, which is a much smaller sliverof land, which is under which is under a different regime of Hamas, but they were elected. And we really want countries to have their own elections. We sure do get amazed when they have elections. And they elect people that we don’t like. But but to the point of this article, these countries that we think are so horrible, they have really, it said Iran released 100,000 people, nearly 100,000 people, right?
Yes, well, I remember being 50, but maybe it’s up to 100. By now, there must be just an overwhelming tidal wave of crime in their country.
So but it said it Iran had a prison population of about 189,000 in a system that was designed to hold to 150,000. And the government felt, it took meaningful action Only after thousands of infections and hundreds of deaths are reported. Did officials take the situation seriously and release nearly 100,000 people, assuming that’s accurate, more than far more than had been released in the United States? Now remember, folks, we have 2.2 million people in custody. And we have said on this podcast that they would need to release half of the people on some sort of community supervision. Home arrest or something for the prisons to be able to have any hope of containing a pandemic. Now, if Iran released two thirds of their prisoners, we would have to on the same scale release How many, what would be two thirds of 2.2 million to replicate what Iran has done?
Six times to over a million people like 1.4 ish 1.5.
Well, 1.1, million would be only 50%. So yes, we would have to. We’ve only released a few thousand. Nationwide.
Right, yeah, the numbers are just like token one person here two persons there. It’s it’s pretty, pretty disturbing.
At last count. We have 33…
But these people have commited crimes, man. But you only have like 25 people locked up.
6800 and we’ve released 33.
So but yeah, this is this. This is sad because once once people we’re seeing stats, I think and some of these articles where 50, 70, 80% of the people are testing positive and those who have who have immune issues or are more prone to suffer ill side effects. It doesn’t I mean people some people have it they they don’t know they have it or they think they have a common cold. But uh, but there’s a lot of people who who are going to die that weren’t sentenced to death.
Ready to be a part of Registry Matters, get links at registrymatters.co if you need to be discreet about it, contact them by email registrmatters email@example.com you can call or text a ransom message. (747)227-4477 Wanna support registry matters on a monthly basis. Head to Patreon.com/registry matters. Not ready to become a patron? Give a five star review at Apple podcasts or Stitcher or tell your buddies at your treatment class about the podcast. We want to send out a big heartfelt support for those on the registry. Keep fighting. Without you, we can’t succeed. You make it possible. How about over at ABC News over 5000 corrections officers have contracted COVID-19 I’m just gonna throw out there Larry, you can you can tell me that I’m crazy as poop if you want to. I believe that there are more correction people, people incarcerated than there are corrections officers. So if 5,000 correction officers have had it, whatever proportion that is way more people locked up have it.
Absolutely. And I think we know that there’s been a serious lack of testing. It’s been it’s been far less testing in the prisons than have been in the in the in the free world which has been inadequate itself.
And that seems like a great way to manage the whole thing is if we don’t test it, if we don’t know about it, then we can just sort of ignore it and say it’s not real, not there. It’s not a problem.
There is there is some truth to that. We’ll get to an article next about our state’s Supreme Court here. And that was the corrections department’s defense. They said, Well, we we’ve only found a small number of people positive. Yeah, but you’ve only tested a small number of people.
What do you think we should do with an officer? Should we should we still let that officer go back to work when they have it? I mean, should they be running around a dorm, like doing headcount and things of that nature interacting with the inmates if they are testing positive?
not being a medical person, it just doesn’t seem like it would it would be a prudent thing to do if it’s as contagious as we’ve been told and led to believe it doesn’t seem like you’d want those officers around anybody while there. Isn’t there like a period of time where that is highly contagious. We’ve been told,
oh, you know, honestly, I haven’t heard about that aspect. I just know that you can be asymptomatic and infectious for something of two weeks before you would show symptoms. I think if pulled that back to 10 days, but I don’t want to split hairs over that one.
But if it If there was no need for if it wasn’t something that was contagious, why are we social distancing? There’d be no point in social distancing. If you couldn’t catch it from anybody.
That would be correct, though I still am pretty sure that that’s how people are catching it. They’re not catching it through drug use sharing forks, they’re catching it by like, being nearby someone in you know, at a grocery store at a restaurant. That’s, I’m assuming that’s how it’s caught.
Oh, well, we’ll have to have a medical person. Come on. Add that to the list.
Yes, we should. I’ll put that on the roster. Then over in your neck of the woods, New Mexico Supreme Court rejects requests for mass prisoner release, why won’t you people release our people?
Well, this has been a pattern of Supreme Court. There’s been a number of petitions taken asking for this. And the problems that we’re having is that all of a sudden, we’re asking our courts to become the legislative branch. And for most of my life, I’ve heard this terminology about legislating from the bench. I don’t won’t judges that legislate from the bench. I want them to interpret the law. And that’s what I’m looking for in a judicial selection. Well, there are processes in place in practically every state where these petitions have been filed. I think in fact, every state where these petitions have been filed they’re processes in place already to release people, and they’re primarily under the executive branch, but also the judges have certain powers depending on the state to release people. pretrial, the judge, almost everything in a pretrial setting would be controlled by the by the, by the judge, because the person hasn’t been convicted yet. So the judge would have the broadest of discretion in pre trial, but even a sentence person, sentences can be modified and types of confinement can be modified by courts in some instances. And then there is the extraordinary powers that governors have. And these governors are hesitant to exercise these powers and everybody’s running to court and I understand if you realize that nobody is going to get out the court is your last Stop. But these courts are saying no, the processes already exist to have people released. And we’re not this is not our role. We’re not supposed to be doing this. So they’re ducking these petitions.
We often call them super legislators. Now we’re almost asking them to be super governors.
Well, well, I’m deliberately trying to make that point. As I continue to believe their audience leans primarily conservative. Most of I suspect our listeners say they don’t want judges legislating from the bench. And that’s exactly what’s being asked of them. They’re being asked to pretend like the processes that are there are not there, simply because they’re not being utilized in the way that you would. I would like for these people to be out. I’ve said that over and over again, I would like for the prison population to be released, reduced considerably, but the processes exist already. Our politics won’t allow us to do that. So it’s a political paralysis that’s taken taken control of this. It’s kind of like the thing with guns clearly our country, we could reduce gun violence, we’re not going to, but we could reduce gun violence. But we would have to look at the second amendment and what type of alterations we would be willing to make. And the gun enthusiasts would come out in droves. And they would so politicize it and demonize anybody who even wanted to have a discussion about it. But we have a process in place and these courts are saying, Hey, we’re, we’re not here to do that for you. If you want if you want these people out, utilize the processes that already exist.
Do you, can we reflect on the the protests the in Michigan, though, that they’re demanding that the governor open the state? Do you see any relationship there to the mindset of people and their state’s rights and legislating from the bench and marching with loaded weapons on the state Capitol?
Well first of all, I have absolutely no problem with people exercising their rights to to petition the government for redress of their grievances. So demanding that they be allowed to work and to go about their lives I have no problem with that. It may not be prudent but we’re constantly getting different information and new information and I can understand if you’re if your life is being destroyed and some people’s are. some businesses are being destroyed just I don’t know if you’ve ever gone to Sweet Tomatoes but they they announced two days ago that they will not reopen any of their of their locations because of this pandemic. Have you ever eaten at a sweet tomatoes?
I’ve never heard of it.
Well Sweet Tomatoes is basically a super salad bar. those those buffet lines are difficult to…
Yeah, that’s a dead industry probably.
But But people’s people’s businesses they built in their life has been destroyed, being destroyed. And if you don’t have the right to petition the government for redress of your grievance when your life has been destroyed, when would you have a right to petition the government and the protests? so I have no problem with them protesting.
Yeah. And I yeah and I, I do find that this is it seems that our people the PFRs have they think that the Supreme Court is going to save us from what is a state issue and here is the quote unquote, global pandemic. And the states are picking what is allowed to happen, what isn’t when they’re closing when they’re not exactly as it is a state issue. And I still continue to think that this overlays exactly as an example as a metaphor for the registry that the state has residency restrictions. This does not you’re looking for your grievances to be resolved by your legislators or your Supreme Court. Like, they lay on top of each other. They’re exactly parallel to each other.
So well I’m not completely sure I followed that, that whole thought process, but the protesters they’re being they’re being encouraged a little bit by the president, which I don’t really, I don’t really support the president saying that. he makes a comment about getting rid of these democrat governors? That are they’re being a bit cautious on the reopening. But these governors are doing, what their health experts are telling them. I do not believe that the democrat governors are convening in the middle of the night on some sinister motivation to try to deprive Mr. Trump of reelection to try to keep their state shut down. I mean, I cannot be that cynical. I know there are people out there that are but I don’t believe these democrat governors are doing that. By the same token, I don’t believe that Governor Kevin in Georgia had sinister motivations to “Well, Somebody made a major campaign contribution to him, he owns a big business. So therefore he decided to open…” I think he’s got health advisors that are telling him that That they can safely do what they’re doing. And I believe he’s following following what he has, he has been told. And he’s doing what he thinks is best for the citizens of Georgia. Guess what, we’ll have elections for governors in all these states very soon. And the governors will be held accountable for the decisions that they made, we will be able to look back. And we’ll be able to look back critically at what was done and what was necessary. Some things that we thought were necessary. I think we’re looking back we I mean, we we brought in a naval ship in New York and we built hospitals in central city park and we built stuff that have largely gone vacant because of this massive and massive amount of ventilators that they needed billions and millions of them. They turned out to be wrong. The ship has now gone What was that the comfort or the mercy of whatever, one of those one to one. but but the people I don’t think they’re making these decisions with all these sinister, conspiratorial, I mean, our thoughts about our governance is sunk to such a low that You would think you would think that they do that. I’ve been around elected leaders for a great number of years. And these conversations seldom happen. I mean, there are political conversations about how to maximize political advantage for certain situations. But a global health pandemic is not one of them. They will have conspiracies about things like we want to, we want to be on the right side of public education. And we want to make sure we get credit for getting the teachers their raise, they want to make sure that the union members recognize that we fought hard, and that the Republicans fought against that or blah, blah, blah. We want the workers to know that we fought for an increased minimum wage. There is that type of trying to maximize the political, but they don’t sit around at night trying to figure out how to make bad things happen, so that they can make the other party look bad. that that just doesn’t happen, folks.
Next article comes from law.com California Supreme Court won’t open jail doors but says local courts have options. This actually probably dovetails exactly on what I was just describing that your local community can address whether people get out or not. And we the people probably have the power to call them and tell them that they should and that they will pay for it in the polls Next go around if they don’t do the things that we are asking them to do.
I wasn’t able actually look at that article because of the law.com suppression. But…
it’s expensive, man, I’m telling you, it’s like 30 bucks a month or something. It’s crazy.
But But what what I was just talking about in my previous rant about the people that are pre trial, clearly, the local courts have control of that even people that are there post trial. There are some controls. there are sometimes where you don’t have any control as a judge after they’ve been sentenced. But there are a lot of levers that are not being utilized right now. And there’s there is the temptation to pass the buck. I don’t want to have this on me if it goes bad. Very few people have forgotten willie horton in 1988.
Who is that?
We’ve talked about Willie before. Willie was Willie was a person who was serving time in a Massachusetts prison. And Michael Dukakis was the governor and he was a Democrat Party nominee for President in 1988. And he was running against the incumbent vice president George HW Bush, and H.W. ran all these evil racist ads, because Willie had been furloughed one weekend and he went out and did something heinous. I don’t remember what it was if it was a rape or pillage or plunder or murder or what it was, but he did something really bad on a furlough. And H.W. made it sound like in his advertising. He appealed to that silent majority out there about if you elect this man president, this is what you’re going to have this weekend furloughs for people like this. Dukakis had no idea that the man was out on furlough. He never even thought about the furlough program. He probably didn’t even know that they had such a program until willie horton happened. He I mean, it would have been the furthest thing from my mind, you put a person in charge of the corrections department, you hope they do a good job. And you’d keep that out of your mind because it doesn’t win you a whole lot of votes. It could cost you a whole lot of votes, but it doesn’t win you a whole lot of votes. And so he had no idea. But that’s what willie horton and everybody who’s in politics. They remember, Willie Horton.
speaking of Massachusetts, though, from WBR Massachusetts highest court asks, Who releases prisoners in a pandemic? I didn’t think that the Supreme Court of the state would ask questions back into the lower section of the other branches. I thought everything would like flow in their direction first.
Well, it is it is a good question. Since everybody is dodging who who would make the decision? I think that I think the courts trying to figure that out
the executive has the power to let people go for low commute all those they have those powers. Do they have that power in Georgia though, that’s a separate like the pardon & parole board has the ultimate authority?
I don’t believe in Georgia. I think a long decades ago they took that power away from the governor because of abuse. And they created the independent board of pardons and paroles and Georgia actually has one of the better systems in my view.
I think I think the governor could say your sentence is commuted, that would be that would be final, but I don’t think he can say, Hey, we want we would like to let this guy go because he’s a nice dude. I don’t think they have that power.
I’m not sure the governor of Georgia can pardon anybody. I’m sure. I think that only the pardon and parole board can do that. They were selling they were selling pardons back in the Tallmadge administration, a long time ago.
And so in that question, though, then could the legislature meet and say, and rewrite some sort of sentencing law that says everybody who has less than a year can go home tomorrow and they sign it governor signs it and then the doors just open and the thousand, the one year less go home? Could the legislature do that? Even in a theory point of view?
Theoretically, they could, they’re not likely to do that. First of all, most states have part time legislatures that are not in session. So you’d have to, you’d have to be in session. I don’t see anybody calling a special session, Oh well we want to figure out how to get the prisoners out. Let’s call I mean, I don’t see that happening. You could possibly convince if there’s going to be a special session which we will have one because our budget is so far out of balance, because of the pandemic, you could possibly convince that be added to an agenda. But it’s so controversial, that a governor in a special session is going to say no, I don’t really don’t want that to be talked about because we’ll never get out of here. We’ll never get the budget. We’ll never do the things we have to do. And this is going to be this is going to be a free for all. But theoretically, it’s possible, but politically, it’s just not likely that you would you would have… these are the types of decisions that need to be made before we have a pandemic, about about how we will, how we will, all these things we need to have in place. We need to have like the unemployment. every time we have an economic disaster in this country and we’ve had a number of them in my lifetime. we lived through the Great Depression in the 1930s. And then we’ve had economic slowdowns in the 70s. And each time we have that they convene. And this time they had to do it with only a few members present but they they passed this cares act. And they put these things together quickly to respond to an emergency. And then there there end up being gaps and unintended consequences, what we have to do is to have these in place where that these things happen automatically. When we have unemployment going up, there would be an automatic kick in of extended benefits. You don’t have to have that debate. And then things would pull back when the when the unemployment rate falls. And I know that that that’s hard to do, because nobody wants to plan for a pandemic. But now we’ve had this experience and we ended up we ended up not executing very well. We didn’t do a very, We didn’t execute well on the payroll protection program. We didn’t execute very Well on the unemployment, the Republicans had concern about the extra $600 a week. They were correct. That’s an incentive and inducement not to work, because the state benefit is compounded by the extra $600. And so you got a person that was making, and I won’t call particulars, but an old person who was apparently about $150 a week is getting paid $769 a week not to work. And there’s no…
I mean, that’s the ideal though, like, You need to be incentivized to stay your tushie home, because we need you to stay home to not be in a position where you’re forced to be compromised to go out in public.
But when the when the pandemic abates, then the person still has no incentive, because those benefits those benefits lasts for at least 16 weeks. And, and the democrats were right when they argued for the $600 because they said, if we’re not going to allow people to work, if the government’s going to force the closure of their businesses, then the traditional replacement of 40 to 50% of a person’s earnings is not fair to them because they got mortgages. They’ve got their expense structure to support built on what they were earning. both sides were right. The Republicans were right that it was going to provide a perverse incentive not to work and the democrats were right that we couldn’t just tell people not to work and then not make them whole. So but but the solution is to think this through now that we’ve gone through this pandemic, and let’s put together emergency measures that that are able to be triggered without having to do a fly by night, quick pass of something where you don’t have time to work out the details.
Jen in chat, and by the way, if you want to participate in the show, we do have a chat room, you can find it in the show notes over at registrymatters.co and participate and watch the live stream and chat along. but Jen in chat says but the money isn’t lasting forever and who knows if the jobs are even coming back. It’s a pretty decent point. I mean, I guess I’m of the mindset that we are going to say okay, All clear. And we’re going to flip a switch and not everybody, but everybody’s going to kind of sort of go back to work the way that it was in February.
Well, well, Jen is absolutely right. The jobs are not going to all come back. Right now, I just mentioned Sweet Tomatoes, their jobs are clearly not coming back. But what I’m talking about is employers who have had their, their permission to open, as the restrictions have been lifted. They’re reaching out to their employees, and trying to recall them and employees are saying, why would we want to come back to work? I’ve had an employer tell me that. He said, I want to recall my people and they don’t want to work. And I said, Well, why would you want people who don’t want to work? Why don’t you go out and hire brand new people? Well, but they’re collecting unemployment, and they’re going to keep collecting it. But if you force people to come back to work, when they’re going to be getting $1,000 a week not to work, you’re going to pay him $475 a week to work, they would be nuts to want to come back to work. But that does end that $600 supplement ends at the end of July. And then it’s got to be a more normal payment level for those who are unemployed and those jobs are going to not come back all at once.
I’m wondering though, I keep hearing stories of people spending, you know, five, six weeks at home with their kids and they are ready to get out, they will go back to work.
Well, I’m not saying that everybody who’s getting $1,000 a week to not to work is going to be happy with it. But there are people who are being offered the opportunity to come back to work and they’re saying no, I don’t want to but when the $600 peels off and they’re back to the, state benefits are pretty low. Our state is actually on the high side, but state benefits can run as low as about $300 a week maximum benefits.
Yes. And that’s roughly somewhere around what it is here.
Yeah, I think Georgia maxes out at like $335 or $365 a week. And, and ours is closer to $500 a week. But but but that’s still if you had if you had a job that was paying your $70,000, $500 a week times times, If you annualize that, that’s only what $500 a week times 50 that’s nowhere near that’s nowhere near $70,000.
Sure, sure. Yeah. So all right, do you know what my favorite kinds of articles are Larry?
they’re the ones where we don’t have to talk about them.
Yes. So we’re going to have a moment of silence while we not talk about this next article. All right, that was the moment of silence. I like the ones that are related around technology of course and here is New Jersey yet another state saying that it is unconstitutional to ban PFRs from using the internet here is a state of the of New Jersey where I honestly I totally need you to dumb it down because all the legalese and all that I don’t follow it but I know packingham was referenced and modern day internet, social media all that it can’t keep people from doing it just because you said they did a naughty thing some time ago.
Well, I went through the 43 page opinion, I haven’t done this for a while and I made yellow highlighting through things I thought were interesting that you might find interesting, but what struck out at me is, now folks this is an appellate court decision, but it’s not the New Jersey Supreme Court, and I asked in pre shell banter If I’m allowed to tell you what I think they’re likely to do. So Andy am I allowed to tell you what I think they’re likely to do?
Let me, God if I would have known that I would have actually gotten the the words from Super patron Mike and he would say, I like that you do not hold back, Larry, tell us what you want to say.
So it would be more than likely that they would appeal this. they’ll follow, Since this is the mid level. It went from trial court to the Appellate Division. And then there’s the state Supreme Court. When a state statute is struck down, and they did strike the statute down that New Jersey has. It would be so unlikely that they would not file a cert petition. That I would be I would be remiss to tell you anything to the contrary. They should because the Attorney General is bound to the defend the laws of the state. It would be more than likely that they would file a cert petition and they would want a state supreme court review of this appellate level decision, but in the meantime, it is a good decision. What struck me out at this, this guy had an old defense that goes back to the year 2000. And that, and what? And his sentencing in June of 2000, he was given time served, and three years probation. Now, let’s assume he might have stayed in jail, anywhere from a few days to a couple months to maybe a year, year and a half. But whatever that amount of time was, his sentence was time served in probation. And then he was given what they call community supervision for life. And then with it within a few years, in 2004 He was sentenced to four years in prison for violating probation. His sentence of probation was only three years, folks. So now he’s been sentenced to serve four years. After a second violation of 2005 He was sentenced to four years of adult diagnostic and treatment. So now you had four and four, were up to eight. But it doesn’t stop there. He, he, he, they continued to pile on conditions. In 2007 The board added a new condition, to his parole as they did to all other individual serving the CSL sentence that he was prohibited from using social media on the internet without the Express authorization of the district parole supervisor. And so there’s where the present day troubles come from, as he had, They kept piling on more conditions and more conditions. These people don’t know how to stop. So almost six years after his conviction for violating the social networking ban, He filed two separate motions to correct the sentence not authorized by law. And This is a unique and novel way to get to court because he’s still under sentence. And courts generally have the power to correct an illegal sentence. And he argued that the social networking restriction added to his June 2000 sentence related to his guilty plea in October 1999 Was unconstitutional. And he cited the US Constitution, and the New Jersey constitution. And he won. And he won based on packingham. And I think we had Ashley on some months back and she had more faith that packingham was going to help those under supervision. And we need to say emphatically she was right, because she read a lot more into packingham than what I did, because clearly it was a case where the issue was not before the court for people under supervision, that people in North Carolina challenged. They were not under supervision. But she read more to the dicta than I did. And and so this, the courts are starting to say, with a couple of exceptions which are cited in this opinion in the Fifth Circuit and I forget which other circuit, the courts were beginning to say that you do have the right to access social media. And that the that the that the bans are unconstitutional, and they felt in this particular case that it was facially unconstitutional, which is the toughest challenge to make.
Here we go with another state what district is this Larry?
Well, this is this is in state court, but but were in the Northeast so I think that might be the first or second circuit, but uh, but, but this, but this is not in federal court. The only way this could get into federal court would be if the, the state does, which I anticipate they will do if they seek a Supreme Court review, and I’d be very surprised if they don’t, then if the supreme Court upholds the appellate court, then they would have the right to file a cert petition with the US Supreme Court. And they could ask the US Supreme Court to answer the question. Did you people intend to protect those who are under supervision? Or did you people when you did packingham only intend to protect those who had paid their debt to society? And that would be the basis that I would write the cert petition If I were representing the state, I would say now you people had the dicta in here. But that wasn’t the issue before the court. So therefore, this is a novel better first impression. And to clarify for the whole United States, please grant review, and tell us what you meant, when you said that, that that it was unconstitutional to ban people from social media. And that’s what I think that they could conceivably do If if the Supreme Court upholds the appellate court, the state Supreme Court that is.
and do you want to like lay your chips down and say which way that goes?
Well, if the Supreme Court were to get a cert petition, I think this is juicy enough that they just might grant it. They like exciting things. And I think that if they were to get a cert petition, they would they would they would want to grant it, but who knows?
do we have any cases where they have ruled in the other direction where they said you can’t, and it held up?
Yes. In this decision, like I said the Fifth Circuit has said that, that those under supervision don’t have these rights, that packingham has nothing to do with those under supervision. Illinois Supreme Court, I think said the same thing.
And so that accelerates the opportunity to get it in the supreme court where you have different regions saying yes and no.
that would enhance the likelihood. But I think it’s just juicy enough that they would want to review it anyway. Because they’ve laid down the law in packingham, that you don’t give up all your rights.
Well, this is almost like Attacking, they’re like putting chinks in the armor of the decision that they have made sort of. I mean, like it’s at least tangentially related to it.
I don’t think it’s that way. I think that it’s it’s, it’s an evolving area that needs to be addressed. And it’s, it’s exciting because we’ve got new technology, we’ve got any evolving society, and we’ve got the town square as a, as they considered in packingham, they referred to it as the equivalent of the town square, and we’re having a massive amount of disenfranchisement from people being allowed access. And in the case of New Jersey, it was up to the district supervisor, and this opinion pointed out that you just can’t let the constitution be subject to the whims of a district supervisor, what, what, what constitutional right is that if your right is dependent upon how someone feels,
okay, yeah. I follow, follow follow.
So, so, so this was a great decision if it holds up on appeal to state Supreme Court.
Moving over to yet another law.com article but I think we have enough to go on with this one. shackling a defendant leads to murder conviction reversal. I guess this story goes along the lines of that a person was being tried for murder and he was brought into trial court with shackles and that would have swayed the jury’s decision and how they applied their judgment against him. And this is the Georgia Yeah, the Georgia Supreme Court is reversing that decision just simply because the guy was in chains?
Well, they also, according to the article, they all opined that there was enough evidence to convict him anyway, but they still set aside the conviction. So the prosecutor will just try them again. But for the life of me, I do not understand. How will you put on that black robe and you swear that you’re going to be impartial? And that you’re going to do justice? How would you tolerate allowing a person to be shackled in your courtroom? Why did you let it come to this judge? Why did you do this? You didn’t need to let this happen. You could have said deputy please take those shackles off. And you could have discharged the duty if they if they probably been shackled. You could have said sua sponte I’m declaring a mistrial. And you could have said sorry, that this this defendant should not have been seen in shackles, and therefore there’s presumptions that I cannot erase from the jurors’ mind. And why did why do we have to even have this go to supreme court? Why didn’t the judge do the right thing? Of course, I know the answer to that because he didn’t want to, he or she. (Andy) because It’s Georgia. Well, it happens in other places. But but but I worked on a case in Georgia with a with a gentleman that you know, that where the judge allowed the trial to be going forward When the man was clearly mentally defective. He keeps he keeps the court waiting and the judge says How come you’re late? And he says, cuz I didn’t take my pills and he says what pills? And he says my little blue pills. And the thing to do was to say to the counsel , approach the bench. Tell me about these pills that this guy is taking Do you know anything about his medical condition? I think we’re going to need to have a psychological examination before I can allow this trial to go forward. He’s talking about stuff that renders him where he’s gonna tell the court that that I kept you waiting because I was looking for my pills? Yeah, that’s that’s just bizarre behavior.
But he, I know the case, but I’m just gonna ask so he was found guilty and then you helped him push back to get that reversed correct?
Yes. based on his mental deficits his conviction was set aside, he was not competent to stand trial. You can’t try an incompetent person.
And his, which would make sort of like a farce of the courts.
Yes, It was a farce. But my point I was making is that the judge in that trial saw the man exhibiting strange behavior. The first step is to call the counsel for both sides and say what is going on here? This is really bizarre. What kind of psychological records do you have on this? This client, but what do we know about his medical condition? And if the counsel says we don’t know anything, the judge says, Well, I think I’m going to call a recess, and I’m going to ask that we get some psychological information, find out if he’s competent, because I don’t want to risk a mistrial here. I don’t want to risk having to do this over again. This man is entitled to be competent before the state proceeds against him, and I’m not so sure he is.
Then why I’m thinking back to the shackles part but there was a case there was a person in Georgia the name completely escapes me, where the person overpowered the deputies and then grabbed I want to say like one of the bailiffs if that’s the right word.
There was a shootout in the Fulton County, Fulton County, not that many years ago. His name was Nickels.
I mean, doesn’t that then add credibility to like, well, we probably need to keep these people locked up so they can’t do those things.
No, it doesn’t do that. What it does is it means that we just have to be more diligent about, about how we how we monitor inmates that are that are in custody. But but you have the right to be presumed innocent, and to have no inferences drawn. And the easiest way to draw an inference is to have a person in custody, the jury doesn’t need to know they’re in custody. They don’t need to draw any inferences, that that’s a bad person. And if the person wants to make themselves look bad if they’ve got tattoos from head to toe screws and bolts and everything that they’ve done to themselves, that’s not anything to the system, but we don’t put prejudice. we don’t do things to a person who’s in trial to prejudice the jurors. And that’s what the shackles do
Screws and bolts. When have you see anybody with screws and bolts in their face?
My neighbor has screws and bolts in his Face Larry. And I think about it every time I’m like yeah, let’s, you know, maybe we could help you find a job he would have to find something of an incredibly progressive job where like that then adds culture and clarity to the position that he’s trying to get. And so he currently delivers pizza.
Well, if that’s his choice because he wants to have screws and bolts I guess it’s up to him.
Yes, it is. Um, and you know, that conversation came up just to take a quick little detour maybe I even talked about this that he was all up in arms about that. He is quote unquote forced to go do this job now that everyone’s on lockdown, but everyone’s ordering pizza. So his efforts to to make a living are enhanced because everyone is ordering a pizza. And he’s freaking out because now he has to like hand them a pen for them to sign the check. And now he’s got the pens back. And now the pen has Corona on it. What is he supposed to do? And he has to try to deliver the pizza from you know, his arms only three feet long or whatever. And like he’s freaking out. He is forced to do this job. I’m like, I feel horrible saying you should have thought about that before. But I know that’s not reality. You can’t think about it Now. you can’t time travel. But these are things that you should probably think about. When you have the opportunity to think about,
well, how is he forced into this job? He can stop this job tomorrow, who’s forcing him to do this job?
He doesn’t have an alternate form of income. And if he quit, I don’t think he would collect unemployment.
Well, he probably wouldn’t. But he’s not being forced to do the job.
I mean, unless he doesn’t want to eat too. Well, that’s the force part. So I bought him a box of pens. I bought him 100 pack a pen so that he could just like here, keep it we’re done. Move on. It was an easy problem to solve.
That was very kind of you.
That’s That’s why I’m here. from the New York Times. Appeals Court vacancy is under scrutiny ahead of contested confirmation hearing. My most I the person I hate the most in Congress and I use the word hate and I really do mean hate as in dislike greatly is the leader of the Senate, he’s a really, really big dirt bag, Larry.
I would not be able to disagree with you on that. But this is an individual who has been. Now we’re talking about for those who want to understand this is the United States Court of Appeals, which is the level of appeal courts directly below the Supreme Court, they’re lifetime, as all federal judgeships are, except for the magistrate judge level. We’re talking about the DC circuit, which is the most prestigious of all the circuits. It’s the smallest in geographic territory, but it has the propensity to hear things all related to the government. So it’s, it’s it’s an ideal place to be.
a feeding pipeline to go to the Supreme Court. That’s where Kavanaugh comes from, if I’m not mistaken.
It’s It’s It’s we’re talking about a 37 year old protege of McConnell, who has been a district judge for a very brief amount of time. And we’re talking about a person who was related as unqualified by the American Bar Association. We’re talking about if the allegations are true that that Leader McConnell is contacting judges that are older and saying, Would you consider retiring to create a vacancy and that’s what he apparently has done in this case is to create the vacancy via a retirement so that he can fill it with a 37 year olds that’d be around after you and Methuselah are all are dead. And if you don’t have any, if you don’t have any ethical problems with that, then that’s that one’s on you. But I just it just seems a little what was Will’s word that he said about the?(Andy) smarmy. How do you spell that?
SMARMY. Something like that. We can probably add a bunch of letters after that if we wanted to.
if, if, if, if that if there’s any such thing that would qualify, being the leader of the Senate, the person who appoints the members of the Judiciary Committee, if you’re out at asking judges to consider stepping down so that they can appear before Committee, which your party has the majority of, that you’ve named the chair of. If that doesn’t sink to the level of something that’s beyond ethical, I can’t think of anything that would. But that’s but this is the same person who decided that the President of the United States in 2016 was not entitled to fill a vacancy. He said it belonged to the American people, and that the next president would fill that vacancy. This is the same person who held up the previous president from being able to fill vacancies and that’s why the democrats in it abolish the filibuster for all appointees except for the Supreme Court. This is a person who’s been nothing but an obstructionist and he’s got an agenda. And apparently the people of Kentucky love him because he continues to win reelection and he’s on the ballot this year, what do you bet he gets reelected again.
I have heard things about him that he is one of the most unpopular people ever. And somehow he gets elected. And I think that has a lot to do with nobody runs against him. He’s incredibly well funded. He gets incredible campaign contributions because he’s so underhanded and smarmy that he just continues. He’s been in the Senate for like 30 years. He’s been there forever.
well, I don’t think I can say anything more about the guy he, as far as I’m concerned, he’s,
I don’t think he’s contested by somebody. And I certainly certainly hope I’d like I would consider putting contribution money behind that person five or 10 bucks, whatever I could put together just to try and beat Mitch because he is terrible human. He’s really a bad human being.
So well. He reminds me of Jesse Helms, and so many of those Southern senators that everybody hates, they’ve managed to get reelected. So how does that work? Are the polls dishonest or the people are they are they rigging the ballots because they win?
Yes, I know. I know. Over at The Daily Herald Tennessee to test all inmates and prison staff for virus I should have moved this over into the COVID section there. Why would we want to test all the inmates and prison staff for the virus?
Well, I think we’re learning from where they’re doing that the infection rate is just off the charts from the 70s 80s 90%. I think I heard in one situation where that 90% of the inmates tested, tested positive, but they’re saying that they’re asymptomatic. Now, I’m wondering if that’s true. If they’re asymptomatic, because they don’t want to be put in isolation, or if they truly are asymptomatic.
You’ve got to think that when you put 80 people in 100 square feet, that everyone has it, as soon as one person with test positive, you could just assume you could just, yep, I’ll have it and just be done with it. I mean, and I don’t mean that literally, you probably still want to do testing, but you could just assume they all have it and go from there and start treating accordingly.
So well. I think it’s a good positive steps, and that they say they’ve also ordered masks that 93,000 masks have been distributed to inmates. I’m not sure that I’ve heard of that any other system have you?
No, have not. it is it is a terrible idea that we have people in such close proximity and we have this infection, this thing I, you know, AIDS 30 and 40 years ago was a death sentence. So, if you had it, you were going to die, but you weren’t I don’t use the word contagious and be misleading. You were not contagious as an airborne illness, you had to have very intimate contact with a person. This is just like, Hey, dude, what’s up and you’re now you’re affected? I mean, this is just, it is so radically different that you just proximity and you’re, not doomed could be doomed. It’s very bizarre and that we have these people in prison in lock up various ways. And everyone is going to have it and we’re not doing anything to help literally like the most misfortunate people in the in the state and I know we should, they should have thought about that beforeh and blah, blah, blah. Well,
how would you think about a pandemic
Wasn’t HIV considered one of the other pandemics because like no treatment for it spreads indiscriminately. And this would obviously fit into the same sort of category but it again with HIV just being in proximity of someone with it, you’re not going to catch it this is so I don’t like you’d have to let you have to put everybody in their own isolation chamber but that’s obviously not feasible and not humane either. And leave them there for eight weeks.
So well AIDS also had the component of blood transfusions that the blood supply of course of course was tainted and that’s how Ryan White got it. he was the little kid that 10, 11, 12 year old boy that caught it through a blood transfusion. and then Greg Louganis an Olympic diver took an interest in Ryan while he was alive.
I recently came across a picture of Princess Diana, the late Princess Diana and she had visited someone look like the late stages of whatever illness they had contracted with having HIV. And there she is shaking his hand and being very close. You couldn’t do that with this situation. And that’s that’s the distinction. I’m not trying to these are almost apples to oranges comparisons, both resulting in death, most likely. And but yeah, transfusions, you had to have very intimate, some sort of fluid transfer between the two for HIV. And this is just like, Yo, dude, how’s it going? Oh, sorry. Now you got it.
So yeah, it’s, but I think as it was pointed out, some number of episodes back that it’s probably, there’s probably little we can do. Now. I mean, if you turn the doors, if you do whatever, and let the people out, the lot of the people you’d let out are already infected. Perhaps they get better treatment, but there’s really not a lot of treatment. As I understand it. The only treatment you get is when you have to be provided oxygen, or ventilator, but there’s really there’s really not much there’s not much they could do.
Nope, no, there’s no Other than treat symptoms and make you comfortable and keep you hydrated and whatnot, I’m sure we could disinfect your blood. Just kidding.
So well, that that was a theory that was explored on national TV.
Yes, yes, it was with a lot of people holding their heads shaking. Larry, I want to wait, we have, we can, we’ll do the last article, and then we can do the voicemail that I have to read. But I came across something that I think is helpful, and I know that you’re going to like, pass the buck and say it’s all you but I was listening to a podcast with an interview with a Yale professor. It’s called the science of well-being and it turns out that there’s a free course that you can take at Coursera which and this is a Yale professor, and it’s a like a 14 hour long course, on helping people adjust to being happy and because Considering that many of our people live in very, very constrained, lives with either family being shunned and so forth, like jobs are hard to come by, perhaps this may be some sort of set of tools for you to figure out how you can be happy within yourself. Just something I came across that I wanted to share. Again, it’s free. And I know that you have to be on the internet but we keep having cases that says that you can be on the internet. A couple million people have signed up for this case. If you want to find the podcast it was over it today explained it was just a handful of days ago sometime late last week is when it came out. And today being the the ninth of May. Anyway, that’s just that’s what I wanted to share about.
Well, thank you.
You are very welcome Let’s hit a voicemail and let me let me just roll back for a voicemail. If you do leave voicemail do your best to be clear the the voicemail that I played earlier from Well, he did it over Discord and recorded on his computer. It sounded fantastic. And then this one, I was almost unintelligible and I didn’t want to torture everyone with listening to it. But Chris writes in, he says, Hey, guys, I’m just wondering where in Georgia when you’re on probation, if your crime was committed prior to 2010, the law stated that if you were on supervised probation for two years, you would be put on unsupervised probation automatically. This law was changed in 2015. And I’m wondering why this applies to people on probation. But when it comes to distant restrictions, like schools, church playgrounds, there are different tiers. And I’m wondering, what is the difference in the two pieces? Thanks, and fyp. i think i transcribed that to be roughly coherent, it was kind of hard to hear it.
Yeah. I was still struggling with what he was getting out there of the two things he’s bringing together is confusing me.
Right. And as I was transcribing, I was trying to put it together and I think We did a lot of discovery on the two year unsupervised probation thing. But that is for people that are on supervision. And we talk a lot about what they cannot do anything they want while you’re on supervision, but they can do a lot of things while you’re on supervision. But the distance restriction thing that’s part of the state statute, it’s not a probation restriction. I think that’s where he’s going.
But what’s what’s, what’s the what’s the point he’s making the distance restrictions, they those were in response to a lawsuit that said that applying those retroactively was unconstitutional. There was the case of Wendy Whittaker versus Sonny Perdue, in federal court and the the the, so the Georgia legislature passed in response to that litigation, they made sure that they weren’t applying those retroactively. So it’s based on if you look at the Georgia sex federal registration statute. As you go through the more recent years, there’s more and more restrictions on you in terms of what you can do, you probably know this better than I do. But but there’s a point where you have no restrictions and then you have, you can’t be within a school and they expand the restrictions depending on what year your offense occurred to have more restrictions on you.
Right? Yeah. So ’03 is when it started, and then kind of sort of every three years following so ’03, then ’06, then ‘08, I believe. And they kept adding stuff like at first, it’s like churches, schools, then they added daycares, and they added parks and they had playgrounds, then they almost added it to be where it’s like humanity. It started getting challenged later in the game, when they added bus stops, school bus stops to it. And since those move, they move around from year to year, depending on where the kids live, like you couldn’t make a statute that said, Well, you can’t be 1000 feet from this because in six months from now, it’s going to be in a different place.
That is correct. But in terms of that, that was they, they they didn’t used to have that tiered system. On those restrictions. They applied to everybody. And Wendy Whittaker sued through the southern Center for Human Rights SC whatever that is. acronym is for them. And she, she, she brought a case because she was over in Columbia County and the sheriffs said, by golly, I put my hand on that Bible, and I swore I was going to enforce the law. And she ain’t allowed to lay up there. And I’m going to throw her out, because I’m doing my job. And she was a sympathetic individual where that she had had consensual sex with an underage partner. And that was assigned to a liberal judge Clarence Thomas, Clarence Thomas, Clarence Cooper’s, please forgive me for saying palomas, Clarence Cooper. And the state of Georgia got an unequivocal message that your registry is in deep doo doo. And they, they, they they appeal those, that’s when they put the removal process in place at the same time as that. that petition process didn’t exist. So we’ve got a registry statute that has restrictions and then we’ve got the supposed to be put on unsupervised probation. But after two years, if you paid your fines that and I forgot all those things that they were required to do, but people, people, there may be grounds for litigation. If you should have been asked before they changed the law, unsupervised, converted to unsupervised. We don’t know what the courts will gonna say, because we haven’t asked that question, have we? So Georgia, what? what’s holding you back? Why don’t you challenge that?
It’s a good question. Well, I have to ask we people,
oh, well, a well, of course, I know what’s holding you back lack of financial resources. But, but but that that’s one of those things where we don’t know the answer to it. They they changed the law. And of course, they said, well, the law is in effect, they will those courts issued orders of what they refer to as standing orders, which I don’t think were worth a bucket of spit. But they issued an order saying that despite those but the statute bound unequivocally clear that that in my circuit, they’re not going to be released from supervision. And nobody challenged that. So I don’t know what the answer is because until a challenge is raised, they can do it until they’re stopped.
You know, that bucket of spit comment? I bet you if you had a bucket of spit from Elvis, it would be worth a lot of money.
I’m thinking Probably not.
Really? I think there would be some people that would pay big fat money for that bucket of spit. Will probably included because he he’s a Elvis fan.
I think you’re I think you’re having a wild figment of your imagination, maybe for a scarf or something. But I don’t think the spit would be worth a whole lot.
He doesn’t admit to being an elvis fan. I think he’s lying. You ready to shut it down Larry Did I miss anything? I think we got everything well, other than our thank you to our wonderful patrons. We have to totally thank the patrons.
Thank you for all that you do to make this podcast. Successful. There’s one other thing you can do and that’s to grow the audience
How would they do that, Larry?
Well, you’re the expert. But we’re not reaching enough people. And I would hope that what we’re doing could be more helpful to a lot of people if they knew about us and tuned in and you never have to listen to the whole podcast thanks to Andy’s laying it out for you. You can look at the layout the show notes and decide there’s two things you want to hear. And you can fast forward and listen to those segments and you can turn the thing off. But there has to be useful information here that people if they knew about it, and the only they’re going to know about it is if we help spread the word.
Absolutely. You can find us all over the internet.were up on YouTube. So go find us over there. And friend us like us. Subscribe to us over there, Spotify, Google Play Music, it’s called Apple podcasts. Now it’s not, I still call it iTunes, whatever, same thing. But you can find us at registrymatters.co and Larry, why don’t you give him the phone number because it’s your favorite thing in the world.
you did miss a number it’s (747)227-4477 You missed a two.
If you listen to it on playback, you’ll hear I said 227. But it probably faded out when I was saying it.
Oh, it could have done that. It totally could have. You’re right. You’re right. firstname.lastname@example.org. And of course, we love all of our listeners, but our patrons especially and that’s patreon.com/registrymatters. show notes so you can find those at the website. You find a transcription there. What else what else? What else? What else? We love our patrons. Please subscribe over there even $1 a month and it makes us super happy. And we are privileged to have all of you people listening.
You People. It doesn’t sound the same when you say it.
No, you sound, it sounds like you people. Larry, thank you. As always, thank you everybody in chat for hanging out and listening to us banter and all that and we will talk to you soon. Have a great night, Larry.
Well, thank you and we apologize for being off schedule last week, but it was 1000 degrees on this building last week.
Absolutely. Take care. Good night.