Letter to the editor: Crime victims need Marsy’s Law
As indicated by the article “Pa. voters will decide constitutional amendment on rights of crime victims,” Pennsylvanians will soon have the opportunity to vote on the Crime Victims’ Rights Amendment, known as Marsy’s Law.
As the article stated, the language in Marsy’s Law echoes the Pennsylvania Crime Victim Act, but without constitutional protections, these rights can be challenged. Put simply, victims currently have no recourse if their rights are violated.
Also, the ACLU’s assertions are incorrect and misleading. Marsy’s Law will not give victims more rights than defendants and furthermore, judges are highly experienced in weighing competing rights. In fact, 35 states already have constitutional rights for victims and there has not been a single instance, going back 30 years, in which a victim’s rights have been found to trump those of a defendant.
If equity and inalienable rights are the foundation of our nation, why would we deny victims equal constitutional protections as those already afforded to the accused by the Constitution?
I encourage all Pennsylvanians to educate themselves on Marsy’s Law and support equal rights for crime victims on Nov. 5.
The writer is president and CEO of the Center for Victims (centerforvictims.org).