Reform Of The Civil Disabilities Of Felons

1923 WordsNov 22, 20168 Pages
Reform of the Civil Disabilities of Felons The words “civil death” carry a powerful, fear-inducing quality and they should. Millions of Americans have experienced the loss of civil rights on varying levels since the founding of this country over 200 years ago. Many more in other countries throughout history have experienced the same fate. England adopted the idea of denying convicts their right to vote from ancient Greece and Rome. In addition to losing the right to vote, England also took a convict’s property, denied them the right to appear in court, and also prohibited them from entering into contracts. This practice of civil death was carried over from England and implemented in the colonies when they settled in North America. ("Felony Voting Rights") Although the application of civil death has altered as the United States of America matured as a country, it remains as a widely debated topic in current events. Whether felons should regain their civil rights after they have “paid their debt to society” or not is rarely addressed by the federal government. It is, however, a topic that is addressed on a state level in many states almost every year. Some believe that a felon should lose their civil rights indefinitely. Others believe that once someone has served their sentence and paid their fines and restitution, civil rights should be fully restored. While many civil disabilities remain in place for felons, 30 states repealed or amended their laws dealing with

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