In Pursuit of Empathy

Criminal Injustice

This past Monday, two great things happened. First, US Attorney General Eric Holder announced that federal prosecutors would no longer be able to invoke the draconian mandatory minimum sentence laws for low-level drug offenses. A product of the failed “War on Drugs,” these mandatory minimums were almost single-handedly responsible for the 800% increase in prisoners in the US since the 1970’s, as well as a huge factor in the disproportionate incarceration of minorities.  Hours later, Judge Shira Scheindlin ruled that stop-and-frisk practices in New York were unconstitutional racial profiling. NYPD’s controversial practices unabashedly targeted minorities in police “hot-spot” neighborhoods; blacks are four times more likely to be arrested for marijuana use than whites, even though the two groups use the drug at equal rates. Both of these are fantastic, hard-won rulings. But to achieve real reform within America’s criminal justice system, the public must move away from the righteous indignation…

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About WyldMoonChyld

Artist, activist.
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