From the very beginning, our state and national constitutions and laws have laid great emphasis on procedural and substantive safeguards designed to assure fair trials before impartial tribunals in which every defendant stands equal before the law. This noble ideal cannot be realized if the poor man charged with crime has to face his accusers without a lawyer to assist him.
If one were to claim that the U.S. occupation forces in Iraq have been provided with "keys to heaven" by the Pentagon, would that need historical research to be disproved or would you just say, "That's just propaganda"? Indeed, how can you disprove the claim that U.S. soldiers have such keys? Or why should you disprove such ridiculous claims? It is the accusers who must provide the evidence.
Every court of criminal justice must have the power of correcting the greatest and dangerous of all abuses of the forms of law - that of the protracted imprisonment of the accused, untried, perhaps not intended ever to be tried, it may be, not informed of the nature of the charge against him, or the name of the accuser.
There are a great many of these accusers, and they have been accusing me now for a great many years, and what is more, they approached you at the most impressionable age, when some of you were children or adolescents; and literally won their case by default, because there was no one to defend me.
A protest meeting on the issue of environmental abuse is not a convocation of accusers, it is a convocation of the guilty. The realization ought to clear the smog of self-righteousness that has always conventionally hovered over these occasions, and let us see the work that is to be done.
There are people who have legitimate concerns about false accusations and the impact that can have on a young person's life when they have been falsely accused. Kirsten [Gillibrand] and I are not unaware that that is an issue we need to be concerned about, and that's why we have made changes in the legislation to address not just the rights of the victim, the accuser, but also of the accused.
The friends of Job appear on the scene as advisers and "consolers," offering Job the fruits of their moral scientia. But when Job insists that his sufferings have no explanation and that he cannot discover the reason for them through conventional ethical concepts, his friends turn into accusers, and curse Job as a sinner. Thus, instead of consolers, they become torturers by virtue of their very morality, and in so doing, while claiming to be advocates of God, they act as instruments of the devil.