The Argus Leader has a story out there today where, once again, we have Republican legislators who have their priorities backwards.
Because they’re out there advocating to make life easier for criminals, as opposed to victims:
State Sen. Craig Tieszen, R-Rapid City, is among those who thinks the next criminal justice reform should include a discussion of how to help people leaving prison as a way to prevent them from returning.
“These people should have an opportunity to re-enter the workforce,” Tieszen said. “Obviously, they won’t be automatically hired, but they deserve equal opportunity to re-enter the workforce.”
Tieszen, who recently advocated for legislation to restore ex-convicts’ voting rights, said the state could use a “ban the box” law.
We’re just locking people up and shaming them. … It’s a broken system, and South Dakota I think is a good place to experiment with change,” Hickey said. “I believe the best way to help them is to treat them as human beings.”
If some of these guys spent as much time working to ensure crime victims were made whole, and criminals were held to full account for the damage they do to people’s lives, I might be more sympathetic.
But they don’t. They spend an inordinate amount of time trying to make the criminal whole, as opposed to the people whom they might have damaged along the way.
Until victims are restored, criminals should not expect to participate fully in society.
It is a privilege that should be earned. Not handed back.