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Procedures in the Justice System


The essay is an analysis of procedures in the justice system. Two main issues addressed in the essay include listing reasons why bright-line decision may be preferable over case-by-case adjudication and the other way round. My preference from the two is then given. Additionally, issue of American enjoying a right to privacy despite the fact that such rights are not engraved in the constitution is discussed.

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Main Body

Bright-line decision is a judicial rule which aid to solve problems that are vague and this is accomplished by setting up a basic customary that clearly defines the ambiguity thereby establishing a simple answer. One notable advantages of blue line decision over a case to case adjudication is that it is fast hence saves time. Moreover, in situation where ambiguity is evident, this can be easily addressed unlike when using a case by case (Worrall, 2010). It is important to note that the approach does make it possible for the law to be predictable; this is not the case with a case by case adjudication.

Decisions made by using bright line rule do limit judicial discretion thereby ensuring that judges enforce personal rights in criminal cases in situation where it is “it may be unpopular to do so” (Worrall, 2010). The approach has also been deemed to foster equality especially when universal laws are used to govern every litigant’s cases. Lastly and more importantly, due to its long history of use it lays a better ground to solving some cases full of ambiguity.

According to Worrall, 2010 case-by-case adjudication has been shown to foster unbiased case determination as the judges are presented by evidence from both sides and prove one wrong. This is very vital in bring a lasting solution to a dispute. It is worth noting that this approach provides both the plaintiff and defendant an opportunity to adequately present their evidence upon which judgment will be made. Due to equality a case-by-case adjudication brings, there are minimal chances of innocent individuals being persecuted unlike in bright-line decision.

It is worth noting that the United States constitution has no expression for the rights to privacy although bill of rights do have some aspects of protecting privacy for instance privacy belief, person, possessions against searches deemed not reasonable, privilege against self-incrimination. However, in the ninth amendment, it is stated that “enumeration of certain rights” in the Bill of Rights “shall not be construed to deny or disparage other rights retained by the people” (LaFave, 1974). For this reason right to privacy has been thought to be inherent and a basic human right.

In my opinion, there is need to strike a balance to how right of privacy is applicable. Although we might argue for full enjoyment of the right, there are cases that warrant more actions to be taken especially when individuals being under scrutiny are deemed to have committed very serious crimes. In such situations, evidence that could be used against them in court of law if they are provided with full right to privacy might be lost. A clear example is provided with the robberies of twenty banks back in 2008, were it not for cell phone Company to provide FBI with some relevant information, the thieves I bet could still be at large and continuing with their crimes Worrall, 2010). For a longer period of time tracking criminal using their phones, sometimes seen as going against right of privacy has resulted to bringing to books number of serious criminals.

However, there is also need to protect the right to privacy so that American can still enjoy it. This will be a boost especially for those individuals who are have not committed any crime but harassed by the authorities by frisking them among others (LaFave, 1974). On the same note, ensuring that privacy rights are not interfered with will make people make rational decision especially towards educations of their kids, what they themselves will be doing, reading, watching as well as entertaining themselves. Some matters of intimacy and personal choices also need not to be interfered with.

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Ducat, C. & Harold W. (1992). Constitutional Interpretation. New York: West Publishing Company.

LaFave, W. (1974). “Case-by-Case Adjudication” versus “Standardized Procedures”: The Robinson Dilemma. The Supreme Court Review, 1 (1), pp. 127-163.

Worrall, J. (2010). Criminal procedure: From first contact to appeal. Upper Saddle River: Pearson.

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