We have the money to open and staff the downtown jail for those who fail to appear in court to answer misdemeanor summons or traffic tickets, but the council rejected the option to do so, correct?

Let me see if I understand this. You’re telling me that I can violate a law and be cited for it, and then can totally ignore the citation with no threat of consequence whatsoever. Is that what you’re telling me? Really?

Do you realize the seriousness of this policy, because the council obviously doesn’t. It sends the message that you can ignore the law and then disrespect the court at will. Knowing this, those predisposed to criminal behavior or to violate traffic laws will do so with every more frequency. That tears at the very fabric of our society.

At what point do personal responsibility and accountability for one’s actions enter into the picture? Judges have certain discretion they can exercise toward those with few resources. Violators must be brought before the bench, and in some cases arrest is the only option. That option must remain in the hands of police officers, irresponsible politicians notwithstanding.

Gloria J. Graham

volunteer in Baton Rouge community

Baton Rouge