The unfortunate thing in the US is just that most cases don't make it to court, and a lot of people plead guilty to get a deal. This is not how the system was designed, and not how it works in most other democracies.
Let's be honest: courts in most western countries are only really accessible to upper middle class and/or wealthier people. If you do not have proper representation, you will probably lose in cases like these.
The fact that some random smuck is given this much power is shocking.
Also, good lawyers in the US are more expensive than in most European countries (because university fees aren't as high), so you don't have to be rich to afford a lawyer.
Honestly, it's shocking how prosecutors can force people into pleading guilty, just because you might end up in prison for many years because of minor crimes. No other developed country has more prisoners/capita than the US, and it certainly doesn't make the US the safest country on the planet.
The overwhelming majority of people that go through the justice system are guilty. For every ambiguous charge, there are a dozen instances where someone was caught with drugs on their person, clearly identified in a security tape robbing a store, etc. That's the bread and butter of the justice system.
Like every system, the courts have been optimized for the common case. That certainly has costs in the uncommon case--as optimizing for the common case always does. Maybe those costs are too much to bear. But it's not a simple issue of government being "rotten to the core."
 Whether you think having drugs should or should not be a crime is an entirely separate issue.
legal system, we do not have a Justice system it is a legal system
>The overwhelming majority of people that go through the justice system are guilty.
Guilty of victim less violation of legal Statutes that are not crimes at all. A Crime requires a complaining victim.
In order to seek justice there must be a person seeking said justice thus the need for a victim for there to be a crime. For example Growing the wrong plant does not produce a victim thus should not be considered a "crime"
> Whether you think having drugs should or should not be a crime is an entirely separate issue.
No, far from it. It is the issue, the reason the courts need to be "streamlined" is because they have been over burdened by these non-crimes, as such they needed a process to shortcut due process and extort people into signing their legal rights away so they can persecute more people for more non-crimes
Very true. If we had to actually have a trial it would interfere with the profitability of the criminalization cycle.
> shortcut due process and extort people into signing their legal rights away
Yeah, the prosecutors aren't in it to increase society's safety, or even to enforce laws, they're in it for their conviction stats. They'll do anything to game those numbers higher and it's easier to win convictions for strict liability crimes (possession, etc) so they focus on that.
We have the standard "beyond a reasonable doubt" in a criminal trial, arguably calculated to let some criminals go to help ensure that we don't imprison as many innocent people as possible. With a presumption of innocence, the system should assume innocence even if dealing with 99.9% guilty people, and I would call any other optimization corruption enough.
Just being charged with a felony means you are ineligible for conceal carry in a lot of places, even if you are found innocent in court.
That implies at the very least, that you are and will always be suspected guilty (on some level) even if the court never finds you guilty.
Citation please for the italicized part? That's not only unconstitutional on the federal level, but it's also unconstitutional in most if not all states in the US which issue licenses for concealed carry. It's true that while the felony charge is still pending, the accused temporarily waives their right to carry and may have their licensed suspended, however once the case is closed and the person is found not guilty or the charge is dropped, their license is to be immediately reinstated barring any other disqualification. Here's an example from Florida law, other states have similar provisions.
> have in the preceding five years a history of violent behavior
If you are charged, it'll be assumed that you've had a history of violence (depending on the offense)
Then there's California:
> California law allows Police Chiefs and County Sheriffs to issue a license to carry a concealed firearm if the following requirements are met:
1. Upon proof that the person applying is of good moral character
2. That good cause exists for the issuance
3. The applicant is a resident of the county or city to which they are applying (or the applicant’s place of employment is within the city or county)
4. The applicant has completed a course of training (16-24 hours)
And why people will be denied
> those lacking “good moral character,” and
> people who cannot demonstrate “good cause” to carry a weapon.
I do wish all states would adopt California's training course requirement, though. As much as I am proud of my legal right to bear arms, I cringe at the thought of the untrained masses carrying deadly weapons they have no idea how to handle and care for. I'm also a proponent of mental health checks and domestic violence restrictions on weapons licensing.