Clemency, Exoneration, or Pardon

Stretching the maximum limits

I am not a student of law, so my concerns are at best gullible. Not that I haven’t heard clemency, exoneration, acquiescence or pardon for the first time. However, reading this news from NY Times, made me reflect on few issues on pardon –

  1. Pardon is essentially a post facto dispensation of a crime that has happened earlier in the temporal scale. That means, a crime is committed earlier and eventually, in rare circumstances, a pardon is considered and occasionally granted.
  2. Pardon, thus has an implicit submission of the occurrence of crime. It needs a bonafide evidence from jury to have established a crime, not just a suspicion of crime.
  3. As i understand, laws are universal and applicable to each and everyone, no one is above the law. At least that’s the prevailing understanding.
  4. Conflict of interest is strongly likely to create a bias and thus, to avoid a bias, building a neutral design to review the facts is critical to provide validity and moral standing to the disposition and outcome.
  5. Preemptive Pardons are this a criminal offense if one enjoys the status before intending to enjoy the privilege of indulging in a crime.

Trump’s self-pardon is thus unprecedented, it is an abrogation of the natural system of justice. It does not matter if the above five design principles cited by me are mentioned in jurisprudence and statutes of this country. It is, irrespective of its articulation, devoid of moral.

Should we stick to statutes and laws, or review the extraordinary instance as a precedence that some one taking cover and camouflaging oneself? Should we let this person escape because there is not enough built in safeguard in the system to do the diligence and decide and outcome?

I find it vertiginous to think of a self pardon. May be, let’s see how and what the law interprets this. It is stretching the limits of morals to the maximum.

Shashank Heda,
Dallas, Texas

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