Emily Bazelon is a staff writer at the New York Times Magazine and a co-host of Political Gabfest. Her latest book is Charged: The New Movement to Transform American Prosecution and End Mass Incarceration.

“I'm pretty convinced that if everybody went to criminal court we would not have courts that are dysfunctional the way our courts are. Because what you see every day is a lot of dysfunction and disrespect. It’s kind of deadening. Most people—especially most middle and upper-class people in this country—don’t know anything about the system. They haven’t experienced it first-hand and they prefer not to think about it. It’s very stigmatized. A lot of what I do is just bear witness.’”

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