In these times of reckoning—at last—with America's original sin of slavery and racist policies, with police misconduct, and with mass-incarceration, many in our country ask, "What can we do?"
In this powerful and insightful book, Andrea D. Lyon explicates what is wrong with the criminal justice system through clients' stories and historical perspective, and makes the compelling case for the need for reform at the center of the system; not just its edges. Lyon, suggests that we should create an office of the Defender General of the United States and give it the same level of importance as the Attorney General and the Solicitor General. Such an office would not be held by someone who represents law enforcement, or corporate America, but rather by someone who represents and advocates for accused individuals, collectively before the powers that be. A Defender General would raise his or her voice against injustices like those involving the unnecessary killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, or the Texas Supreme Court's refusal to let an innocent man, cleared by DNA, out of prison. The United States needs a Defender General.