Find attorneys who know the case, inside and out. Consult with frum attorneys, who know how words are taken by the people expected to read the petition, and what impressions about the Orthodox community will remain years later. Speak to a cross-section of community leaders.
There is such a petition for Mr. Rubashkin, who faces some incredibly harsh sentencing recommendations. Whatever your feelings about guilt or innocence, there is an extremely strong argument to be made that there were excesses involved in his case. Excess zeal, leading to excessive restrictions, and eventually leading to recommendations quite unusual for the crimes for which he stands convicted. It is within our rights – and therefore within our duties as frum Jews – to appeal to the elements of the legal system that can address any wrongs.
The petition that I link to meets all these requirements. It is addressed not to the original court, but to the US Attorney for Iowa, who has the discretion to review all parameters of the original prosecution. That is all that this petition does. It is the hope of Mr Rubashkin’s attorneys, and attorneys whose interest is purely humanitarian, that if enough people reasonably communicate that the case remains a religiously and communally charged one, she will open a review which will impact favorably on sentencing. The petition does not cast aspersions on the original court, but seeks that sentencing should be consistent with precedent.
I do not have to judge Mr Rubashkin’s actions to ask for what this petition requests. I couldn’t if I wanted to, and I do not want to. But my ahavas Yisroel would be deficient if I would not seek his betterment within the allowances of the law of the land, and its spirit of seeking uniformity in justice.