Source: (2004) Mercer Law Review. 56(2):745-757.

But societies do not stay still. Martin Luther King is owed a debt of gratitude by the United States, and by the whole world, for the moral lead he gave race and tolerance. But the issues he raised about the relationship between governments and their citizens are just as valid today. It is an iron rule of policy and politics that as soon as govern- ments meet one challenge, changes in society mean that new ones arise. In this Lecture, I want to talk about how the English criminal justice system is changing to keep up with society. I should explain that I come to this lecture wearing two hats. I am lucky enough to be the Govern- ment Minister charged with modernizing the criminal justice system. Few challenges are so engrossing, few political mandates so charged, few chalices so poisoned. But I am also a lawyer-for twenty-two years I went to court on a daily basis. I became a Government Minister in 1999. Since then, I suppose I have been responsible for helping to formulate our law. The law is in my blood, and its core values of equity and fairness are my core values too.


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