The Champion

December 2006 , Page 40 

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All But Death, Can Be Adjusted

By Pamela Blume Leonard

All but death, can be adjusted
Dynasties repaired
Systems — settled in their sockets
Citadels — dissolved

Wastes of lives — resown with colors
By succeeding springs
Death — unto itself — exception
Is exempt from change
— Emily Dickinson

The rights of victims in criminal cases, including capital cases, have been expanded during the past 20 years by the U.S. Supreme Court1 and by legislation at the state and federal levels. The federal government enacted the Victim and Witness Protection Act of 1982, and in 1985, the United Nations issued a Declaration on Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power.2 In 2004, as part of the Justice for All Act,3 the Scott Campbell, Stephanie Roper, Wendy Preston, Louarna Gillos and Nila Lynn Crime Victims’ Rights Act became law. This statutory alternative came out of an eight-year campaign for a constitutional amendment to guarantee the rights of victims.4

At the state level, 48 state attorneys general have expressed their belief

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