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Old July 17, 2010, 09:40 PM   #22
Tom Servo
Join Date: September 27, 2008
Location: Foothills of the Appalachians
Posts: 12,151
Shouldn't a crime that is severe enough to warrant the permanent loss of fundamental rights be a felony?
Perhaps not always even then.

Consider: a guy falls on hard times. He kites a few checks. They add up to just enough of an amount to qualify as a felony. The guy gets convicted and does his time. Once released, he is a law-abiding model citizen.

Does he deserve to be stripped of certain civil rights for the rest of his life? Should he be treated the same as a violent predator? These are questions we've yet to adequately answer.

Regarding the Lautenberg amdnement, we suffered a loss. Basically, the 7th Circuit chose to find the law constitutional on grounds that look suspiciously like interest-balancing. The 4th could decide to act in the same way, arguing that the government's interest in maintaining order during a crisis is "compelling."

(I wonder if attacking the Lautenberg amendment head on might have been a bad idea, given that it's harder to generate sympathy for a plaintiff in such situations.)
Sometimes it’s nice not to destroy the world for a change.
--Randall Munroe
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