Tennessee should not fall for tough-on-crime rhetoric, but rather embrace bail reform

April 18, 2024

By: Vincent Atchity

Welcome back to bail reform, Tennessee – sort of. Let’s hope your experiences are less fraught than those of some other states, although your initial return to the topic raises some concerns about the eagerness some have to put people who are innocent until proven guilty behind bars. It is still desirable to minimize the use of bail, because bail is a relic of colonial times that has no place in a society that seeks justice for all.

Bail, for those unclear on what it is, is a deposit that someone who’s been arrested can pay to avoid waiting in jail for their charges to be resolved.

People who can afford to post bail do so routinely, but much like the deposit on a new house, it can be an exorbitant amount of money for someone of limited means to pay for a basic need. More than 60% of defendants stay in jail before trial, yet as we know from high school and some cop shows, people who are charged are innocent until proven guilty.

Read the full article in The Tennessean