American middleweight boxer Rubin “Hurricane” Carter was wrongly convicted of murder in the 1960s, but spent two decades in jail. He died this past week.
The role of the judicial system is to adjudicate disputes between people, between people and their governments, and between different levels of government in a country. This is done to mete out justice equally to all. This equality is supposed to be accomplished by a judicial level being independent from political interference, with efficiency to make sure that lives aren’t ruined by delays, and through consistency in rulings. This does not always occur and great philosophical and legal debates remain about whether justice is truly blind.
Dylan’s 1975 song, which looks at racism, suggests the justice system failed the Hurricane.