Thursday, January 25, 2007

Is the Golden Thread in Danger?

I am a habitual frequenter of English blogs. I have seen hints on a number of them to the effect that Prime Minister Tony Blair has made disparaging remarks about the "golden thread of English jurisprudence": the notion that a person is innocent until proven guilty. It is said that the golden thread goes back to Justice Matthew Hale, and perhaps even to an earlier date with certain canon law commentators. It is undoubtedly one of the most important due process provisions in Anglo-American law. It would be quite distressing if anyone suggested that people should be considered guilty until proven innocent. I have been unable to find any solid news on this matter. Do any of you readers know if it is true that Blair has threatened to eliminate the provision that people are innocent until proven guilty, or is this merely an urban legend?

1 comment:

Dave Smith said...

Hey, Donald:

I hope it's not true, but, if it is, it would only serve as a reminder that there's yet one more good reason that we broke away from England!