The United States has a serious problem with discrimination in the criminal justice system. Through both conscious and unconscious bias, minorities are found guilty and imprisoned at higher rates than others, with black males being impacted most severely.
There is one obvious design change we should be making in our courtrooms: the defendant’s physical features should be hidden from the judge and jury. Until we can fix racism at the societal level, this change to the design of the court process could help to lessen the impact of bias in the courtroom.
Any testimony from the defendant can be given in text form, or using the following software system: the defendant speaks into a camera that will use software to create an avatar that does not have any particular race, and the voice will be altered by software to remove any identifying qualities based on accent, and relayed to a screen in the courtroom.This is already possible using existing technology.
I’m certain there are many changes that need to be made in our courts, both at the macro and micro level. This is just one improvement that came to mind when I attended a jury selection process last year.
If there’s anyone out there working on this, I’d love to help.