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Two Criminal Justice

In reality, it is up to the defendant to prove, if possible, his innocence and to somehow show that he is an exception to the rule (Nunn, 1995, 745).

He calls upon many sources for the myth of equal justice, ranging from the United States Constitution to the gradual accretion of criminal rights that began with Gideon and are still being argued today. Since all myth and allegory need larger than life heroes (usually representing the basic beliefs of the society that created the myth) Nunn points out the Mythic Hero, protecting the State, the Mythic Criminal, who has challenged the existence of the State, the Mythic Courts, and the greatest textual myth, that all men are innocent until proven guilty. He argues that the myth has two dangerous subtexts: "(1) the existence of formal rights adequately protects the individual from the state and (2) because these formal rights make it difficult for the state to secure convictions in an adversarial context, those convictions that do occur are "hard won" and thus more legitimate. The function of the myth, then, is to bestow peace of mind by encouraging the belief that justice is being done in the criminal justice system" (Nunn, 1995, 746).

If, as Nunn argues, the Criminal Justice System is a myth within a myth, and, since myth traditionally is a reflection of society, then shouldn't it be possible that people could be trained to see through the myth? That is a small part of what Flanagan hopes to accomplish with his call for making the study of Criminal Justice an integral part of any Liberal Arts education. He sees this as being entirely possible since colleges today acknowledge that since there is a renewed "emphasis on the importance of [colleges] producing liberally educated college graduates, [then there are] opportunities for criminal justice educators to make their field a keystone in the architecture of a liberal education...[by using]

multidisciplinary perspectives that cha...

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