Unblind Justice: Cameras in the Courtroom

A paper arguing against the use of cameras in the courtroom.

The paper discusses the purpose of our justice system and explains why cameras in the courtroom would impact negatively on the judicial process. The paper uses the OJ Simpson case as an example of the media and television causing the obstruction of justice in the courtroom. The paper contends that allowing cameras in the courtroom sends the wrong message to the American public; it gives them the impression that our justice system is for their entertainment, not the protection of the innocent or the prosecution of the guilty.
“As the charges were read, the accused stood there looking stunned. The trial of one of the prime ministers of a communist block country was perhaps the shortest televised trial in court history. The Premier and his wife were both charged, sentenced and executed all within an hours time. While this bit of history is not the best example of due process, it does make for very good television drama. How their expressions changed from indignation to disbelief to horror when the accused were sentenced to be executed in the next twenty minutes. The pictures of their dead bodies in the snow made papers all over the world. It was all very dramatic. But is justice supposed to be dramatic or impartial? It is impossible for justice to prevail if cameras are allowed in the courtroom.”