"10. The Right to Trial. If we are put on trial this should be in public. The people who try us should not let anyone tell them what to do."
Now read the short story about this important human right.
The Right to Trial
is in the wrong place at the wrong time. He walks toward a store to buy
a drink and he hears gunfire. He gets scared and he runs away from the
sound as fast as he can.
When the police respond to the gunfire, they see Malcolm as he runs from the scene. They stop him and arrest him.
is innocent, but he does not speak English well, and he is scared, so
he cannot explain his side of the story to the police officers.
think he is guilty so they take him to jail. Malcolm quickly loses
hope. He thinks he will stay in jail forever. He knows they think he is
guilty of something very bad.
Then Malcolm's lawyer comes to talk to him. He tells Malcolm not to worry, that they will work everything out at trial.
"Trial?" Malcolm says, "What trial?"
lawyer explains, "Malcolm, you are not guilty yet. You have the right
to a public trial. The law says that you are innocent until you are
found guilty in a court of law."
"But these people," Malcolm says, "they put me in jail. They already decided I was guilty!"
they put you in jail, but they cannot keep you there. And they cannot
decide you are guilty. They must objectively prove you did it," his
lawyer explains. "Do not worry, Malcolm. You are innocent."
Malcolm breathes a sigh of relief. He feels better.
A few months later, Malcolm goes to court, and he is found not guilty!