When is Gideon openly disrespected?
On October 8, 2008, I blogged about the Maryland Public Defender’s Office’s cessation of funding for private lawyers to represent indigent defendants who have to be defended by non-public defender lawyers due to conflicts of interest with the office’s existing clients.
No matter how bad the foregoing situation sounds, I just learned that countless indigent criminal defendants in Native American tribal courts are not provided lawyers, due to lack of funding — except that more funding can be found in areas with wealthier tribes — and a claim that the partial sovereignty granted to such courts means that somehow criminal defendants in tribal courts cannot benefit from the full panoply of rights established by the United States Supreme Court to protect criminal defendants. .
Of course, as I frequently have said in other contexts, the foregoing indigent defense problems in Native American tribal courts can be heavily ameliorated, by legalizing marijuana, heavily decriminalizing all other drugs, legalizing gambling, and legalizing prostitution. Jon Katz