incarceration rates

Another Catch All to the Term

As I read the civil rights laws in order to restore ones civil rights—the right to vote mainly—it appears that one of the catches to lifetime of probation can seriously affect you ability to restore your rights.

According to the laws in my State:

13-905. Restoration of civil rights; persons completing probation

A. A person who has been convicted of two or more felonies and whose period of probation has been completed may have any civil rights which were lost or suspended by the felony conviction restored by the judge who discharges him at the end of the term of probation.

Note the last sentence, “…restored by the judge who discharges him at the end of probation.” I guess if you are a female then you can never get you rights restored since they say “him.” All joking aside (and bad PCness on the State’s behalf) the restoration would be literally impossible with a lifetime probation.

The ability to get your voting rights back should be a given for any type of crime. Chances are that this part of the restoration laws about having the right to possess a firearm would be one of the main evils of why lifetime probation was enacted for a felony of certain types. Without the possibility of probation expiry, you would not ever be able to buy or own a weapon. This could be understandable from most perspectives or public safety view-points. But losing the right to vote, for life, is not the type of right which should be taken away “forever.” Even felons need to be able to pick and choose whom they want to be in office. without this simple right, there would be a greater chance that only non-felons or felons with there rights restored, would be able to vote.

I would love to hear feedback on this perspective. Can’t vote: can’t change any laws….

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