On Friday the Florida Supreme Court declined to hear Richard Paey's appeal of the 25-year sentence he received for "drug trafficking," which in his case amounted to obtaining narcotics for the treatment of his own severe chronic pain with prescriptions his doctor denied writing after they became the subject of a police investigation. Reason contributor Maia Szalavitz notes at The Huffington Post that "Paey—who suffers both multiple sclerosis and from the aftermath of a disastrous and barbaric back surgery that resulted in multiple major malpractice judgments—now receives virtually twice as much morphine in prison than the equivalent in opioid medications for which he was convicted of forging prescriptions." In the decision the state Supreme Court refused to review, a Florida appeals court nevertheless ruled that his sentence was not "grossly disprortionate" enough to violate the constitutional ban on "cruel and unusual punishments." At the same time, the court urged Paey to seek clemency from the governor as a remedy for a sentence that a dissenting judge called "illogical, absurd, unjust, and unconstitutional." That, aside from an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, seems to be the only recourse still open to him.
Amy Coney Barrett Thinks the Second Amendment Prohibits Blanket Bans on Gun Possession by People With Felony Records
The SCOTUS contender's 2019 dissent will alarm gun control supporters but reassure people who want judges to take this constitutional provision as seriously as others.
Rand Paul, Tulsi Gabbard, Thomas Massie, Ron Wyden Join Forces To Unplug the President's 'Internet Kill Switch'
Under the broad terms of a 1934 federal law, the president has the authority to seize emergency control of almost any electronic device in the country.
Voting for Libertarian, Green, or independent candidates will not mean “throwing your vote away.”
Amy Coney Barrett Demolishes the Qualified Immunity Claim of a Detective Accused of Framing a Man for Murder
The case is an encouraging sign that the SCOTUS contender is not the sort of judge who bends over backward to shield cops from liability for outrageous misconduct.
The Legal Response to Breonna Taylor's Death Shows How Drug Prohibition Transforms Murder Into Self-Defense
The hail of bullets that killed her can be justified only in a country that uses violence to enforce politicians' pharmacological prejudices.