Celebrity Justice Essay example

1382 Words Mar 16th, 2013 6 Pages
Celebrity Justice

Lindsay Lohan, Nicole Ritchie, Paris Hilton, Tiger Woods, Nicholas Cage - the list of celebrities who have been arrested or charged with a crime is a long one. Drug possession, lying to investigators, driving while intoxicated, shoplifting - the list of offenses is also a long one. When arrested, are celebrities held to the same standards of justice as the rest of us, or do they receive special treatment in the legal system? If convicted how, do their sentences compare to those of a majority of those in our justice system?
In this paper, I argue that celebrity status does give a defendant a number of major advantages, the most important being that they can hire the kind of legal representation that the average person
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Perhaps for this reason when rich, mostly light skinned female stars are arrested, their treatment is held up for special scrutiny.
Typical of this complaint is an unsigned online “Judiciary Report” (August 2007) that discusses the light treatment for vehicular and drug or alcohol incidents involving Lindsay Lohan, Nicole Ritchie, Paris Hilton and Brittany Spears. The author complains of these, “… public menaces (are) loose on the streets, behind the wheel, on the road where law-abiding citizens drive” and accurately notes that their behavior could result in serious injury or even death (Judiciary Report). It could be added that little publicity accompanies poor minority men arrested for similar charges. Writing in the Journal of Moral Philosophy, Geoffrey Scarre (2006) notes that “courts of criminal jurisdiction commonly allow for mitigating circumstances when
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determining the punishment of convicted wrongdoers.” The concept of mitigation means that not everyone will be punished in identical fashion for a particular crime. Judges and juries weigh factors such as remorse, medical conditions or the person’s past reputation or actions in determining punishment (Scarre 305-307). The perception of the public, however, is that, in general, wealthy stars are not punished to the same level as everyone else. While “The Judiciary

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