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November 18, 2017

"Justice for Veterans: Does Theory Matter?"

The title of this post is the title of this new paper I just saw on SSRN authored by Kristine Huskey. Here is the abstract:

The Veterans Treatment Court (“VTC”) movement is sweeping the nation.  In 2008, there were approximately five courts.  Currently, there are over 350 VTCs and veteran-oriented tracks in the United States.  Most view this rapid proliferation as a positive phenomenon.  VTC growth, however, has occurred haphazardly and most often without deliberate foundational underpinnings.

While most scholars assume that a therapeutic jurisprudence (“TJ”) modality is the paradigm for VTCs, there has been little examination of other theories of justice as appropriate for veterans and the courts that treat them.  This Article addresses whether an alternative theory of justice — specifically, restorative justice (“RJ”) — can inform the theoretical foundation of a VTC to enhance its beneficial impact on veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (“PTSD”), traumatic brain injury (“TBI”), or substance abuse issues.  A primary feature of the RJ philosophy is that it is community-driven: it involves the victim, offender, and “community of interests” in the solution, process of restoration, and prevention of future misconduct.

These principles are well suited for a VTC, which is also collaborative, community-based, and places extreme importance on the reintegration of the veteran back into society.  These characteristics stem from an evolved theory that the community is ultimately responsible for the misconduct that was caused by the defendant’s military service. A hypothetical criminal case common in a VTC illustrates that RJ principles and framework may enhance the beneficial impact of VTCs.  RJ may be just the theory of justice that brings to bear Sebastian Junger’s notion of a tribe as a means for the successful reintegration of veterans back into the community.

November 18, 2017 at 12:49 PM | Permalink


More lawyer quackery and rent seeking.

Highly offensive to Veterans. It implies they are an impaired group, like the retarded, addicted, and mentally ill. Veterans are a superior group, screened, trained, disciplined, taking on the most difficult task of any human being, war.

You lawyers just stink. You are a disgrace. You lawyers should be ashamed of yourselves.

Posted by: David Behar | Nov 18, 2017 6:51:27 PM


It has always seemed to me that giving a particular segment
Of the population its own court system
violates the equal protection clause

Veteran courts are not limited to military offenses
Committed under military jurisdiction. In NC they are state courts
Dealing with state crimes for a class of people who are given preferential treatment


Posted by: Bruce Cunningham | Nov 19, 2017 8:07:26 AM

I presume, Bruce, that you do not think juvenile courts are a violation of the EPC. But maybe you do. And I think it is an interesting claim, and perhaps you and DB can work together to take them down. ;-)

Posted by: Doug B | Nov 19, 2017 1:06:29 PM

Juveniles are another superior group. They outperform adults in every way. They lack experience because of intentional infantilization by lawyers keeping them out of the job market to compete with Democratic Party voters.

Juveniles are not just superior in performance, but also in morality. They commit fewer violent crimes than adults. They consume less alcohol, and more marijuana. Alcohol is the most crimogenic substance on earth.

Posted by: David Behar | Nov 19, 2017 1:50:01 PM


Correct. I don't think juvenile courts are a violation of equal protection.
And I doubt Supremacy Claus and I can work together on anything. !


Posted by: Bruce Cunningham | Nov 19, 2017 2:42:19 PM

Based on theory, we need a Rich People's Court. Guilty defendants diverted to this court would be sentenced to extended stays at the Ritz Carlton. Saudi Arabia is leading the way in this prison reform.

Posted by: David Behar | Nov 20, 2017 8:24:00 AM

Bruce. I once hired a lawyer that sued me, to represent my wife in an unrelated matter. He did a good job, and got his legal fees from the other side.

So, if I put $50,000 in escrow, payable to you, upon the filing and distribution of a well drafted writ of mandamus on the DOJ to seize Facebook in civil forfeiture for the millions of crimes committed on its platform, your answer, would still be, no? I would not care if you finish this job in 2 hours.

Posted by: David Behar | Nov 20, 2017 8:32:04 AM

My answer would be "no"

Posted by: Bruce Cunningham | Nov 20, 2017 10:10:58 AM

Bruce. 1) big money in a short time; 2) name in the national news; 3) patriotic response to save our country; 4) defense of privacy; 5) ride to the Supreme Court; 6) intellectual challenge instead of the mind numbing stuff of your current work; 7) opportunity to spend time with me, and to learn defense stuff you never heard in law school, for hours on end.

Still, no?

Posted by: David Behar | Nov 23, 2017 2:01:46 PM

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