Florida, keep your punishments proportional

Ah, the Sunshine State. If I asked you to think of things that define the region, I’m sure you could probably conjure up a few in your head.  Proximity to Cuba, an abundance of old people, a Governor who looks like Lord Voldemort if you photograph him right, the list goes on and on. However, there’s probably one really quite depressing factoid I’m sure you hadn’t thought of.

In the land of the A.A.R.P and Serial Killers, members of the judiciary rule in a harsh manner.

It’s true. I was sitting in my office today doing my normal routine of clipping my toe nails and looking for work when I came across the story of Florida Mom Heather Hironimus. For those of you not in the know, Ms. Hironimus made the news recently for going on the run instead of having her young son Chase circumcised. Eventually, she was found and wound up in jail.

Now, you may ask what this has to do with harsh rulings in Florida, and for that I consider you to be a sharp reader. So I’ll fill you in. Just this Friday, the Palm Beach Post reported that Ms. Hironimus was forced to sign a consent form for the procedure, under the threat of remaining in the County Jail indefinitely. Yes, indefinite jail time for refusing to consent to a circumcision.

That sitting Judge Jeffery Gillen would threaten an obviously misguided woman (The procedure is perfectly safe you guys.) with a stiff punishment is absurd and sadly par for the course in the region. Through a quick stroll on Google, I found more examples of utter judicial insanity.

In 2007, Judge Charles Greene sent one of his own workers to jail for typing too slowly. Yes, that’s not a joke. Though she was several months behind on the work that earned her time in a cell, this is not the appropriate response. Do you realize that people can be fired Mr. Greene?

And perhaps most famous of all is the case of Marissa Alexander. In the wake of the Trayvon Martin Case, this African American woman’s plight began to receive attention from the media. In her case, for firing a warning shot at her abusive ex-husband, Ms. Alexander was convicted and sentenced to 20 years in prison. She didn’t kill anyone, but somehow Judge James Daniel thought it was appropriate to put her away for the length of an actual murder commission.

Now, maybe it’s the water, heat, closeness to Cuba or just the abundance of old people who are getting senile, but these are just a small example of the absurdity that goes on in that state every day. Ms. Hironimus should pay a fine, the typist should have been fired and Ms. Alexander never should have been in court in the first place. Come out of the darkness Florida, I beg of you.

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