- Professional Journalist
The people of Kentucky are beginning to lose confidence in the Jefferson County courts and judicial system. Legal complaints sit unheard and unresolved for years, as people’s Constitutional rights are intentionally denied. Why haven’t the Commonwealth’s Attorney General and lawmakers done more to require judges to fulfill their judiciary obligations to uphold the laws for the people of Kentucky? Are some of the judges in the Jefferson County courts corrupt or are they just plain lazy?
Scholars and teachers of Jewish law in the 1st Century BCE believed a loss of confidence in the courts leads society to anarchy and revolution. The Mishnah, Pirkei Avot 5:7, says “Rabbis … taught: the sword comes into the world, because of justice delayed and justice denied.” Is this the societal path some in the Jefferson County courts are leading us down?
Civil rights leader the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., wrote from a Birmingham, Alabama, jail cell in 1963 that “justice too long delayed is justice denied.” Is the Jefferson County judicial system truly sliding back in time? Peoples’ confidence in the courts appears to be rapidly deteriorating.
A free society’s confidence in the courts is essential to maintain liberty. U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger in 1970 wrote "a sense of confidence in the courts is essential to maintain the fabric of ordered liberty for a free people and three things could destroy that confidence and do incalculable damage to society: that people come to believe that inefficiency and delay will drain even a just judgment of its value; that people who have long been exploited in the smaller transactions of daily life come to believe that courts cannot vindicate their legal rights from fraud and over-reaching; that people come to believe the law – in the larger sense – cannot fulfill its primary function to protect them and their families in their homes, at their work, and on the public streets."
Are the inefficiencies and delays in the Jefferson County courts affecting an individual’s rights to unprejudiced outcomes? Are the people of our great Commonwealth beginning to believe the courts cannot vindicate their legal rights from fraud? Is the Jefferson County court capable of fulfilling its primary function to protect individuals and families of our free society?
What happens next will be determined by the actions of the Commonwealth’s elected civil servants - the guardians of justice for all, not just a select few.