Who’s really to blame for these secret pardon laws?

Hallie Thomas

Hallie Thomas

Megan Dahle will no longer be writing “From the Left.” Her position will be filled by political science major and Students’ Association Senate candidate Hallie Thomas. A senior from Willow Lake, Hallie Thomas enjoys the songs of Waylon Jennings and the writing of Harper Lee.

No … we’re serious!

In recent weeks plenty of attention has been paid to former governor Bill Janklow and his secret pardons.

This is not surprising, since our current governor is about as exciting as a bus trip to Kadoka.

Don’t get me wrong! I enjoy political scandal as much as the next terminally apathetic American especially if it is controversy pointed towards Janklow.

I’m usually the first to scream “Unctuous Bastard!” where Bill Janklow is concerned, but this week I find myself wondering … is this really a scandal?

It seems to me the fact that we even have a secret pardon law is more disgusting than the fact that Janklow utilized it. I wouldn’t have expected any less from him-or any politician for that matter.

What really amazes me is that this law has been on the books since 1983 and nobody seemed to see this issue coming.

For twenty years people have been pardoned in private for DUIs, marijuana possession, bad checks, burglary, petty theft and arson.

For twenty years, prominent businessmen and political allies have been able to pick up the broken pieces of their shattered lives. Yet no one really seemed to care until it was a slow news week.

There has been quite a bit of debate over whether or not to release the list of pardonees. In all fairness, I believe that if they release the names Janklow has pardoned, the names other administrations should be released as well.

I want to know how many white, middle-aged alderman have been forgiven for their sins. I want to know how many drunk-driving, pot-smoking, thieving arsonists have been exonerated.

I want to know how much it costs to get out of jail free.

Then, I want to talk about a real scandal.

Reach Hallie Thomas at [email protected].