"Shorter Sentences Sought for Crack"

From the WSJ:

The Obama administration said it favors shorter jail sentences for crimes involving crack cocaine, a stance likely to spark a debate with law-enforcement officials who have opposed easing the penalties.

Under current law, a person caught with 500 grams of powder cocaine gets the mandatory minimum sentence of five years, while it takes only five grams of crack cocaine to trigger the same sentence. Critics of the law have long maintained that it unfairly targets African-American communities, where crack is more prevalent. . . .



Blogger Jim W said...

So if black people committed rape or murder more often, would it be racist to give harsh punishments for those crimes? Sounds crazy, but how often do you hear arguments against harsh punishment beginning with "... disproportionately affects african americans ..."?

It's pretty odd how racial activists claim to want a color blind society but their policies all seem to consist of cost-shifting from their favorite race to the rest of society. Naturally, lightly punished crackheads have absolutely no negative effect on the black community. The less you punish them, the more quickly they revert to being model citizens, am I right?

4/30/2009 10:33 AM  
Blogger Matthew Mulligan said...

They'll be promised a short sentence with the possibility of early release - and a job with ACORN.


4/30/2009 11:58 AM  
Blogger CaptainRoadKill said...

When I was 25 I thought when my generation came into it’s own we would have the good sense to discard most of the unenforceable drug laws in favor of regulation like alcohol. Now that I’m 61 I realize how naive I was; the drug enforcement bureau is so big that congress will never consider eliminating those jobs, let alone admit the laws are the problem rather than the solution.
Don’t get me wrong, I lost one brother in law to alcohol, my brother and my sister’s husband are alcoholics, and my other brother in law is permanently disabled from Heron, so I do know the consequences.
The Nanny Society won’t admit that part of Freedom is being able to do Stupid Things to ourselves.

4/30/2009 12:25 PM  
Blogger Harry Schell said...

so, punishment for a crime should be meted out considering the race of the criminal?

Um, seems to me this is a step backwards toward whatever race is out of favor at the time can sustain higher penalties for the same crime.

Are we all equal before the law or are some more equal than others?

And what will be the consequences of releasing more criminals into the general population?

No wonder Obama wants our guns, life for criminals would be safer.

4/30/2009 12:51 PM  
Blogger tlen said...

Interesting. Several years ago in Seattle there was a big stink about Blacks being targeted for parking violations and having their cars "booted". Apparent parking illegally and not paying their tickets was the crime of choice for more Blacks than others. Not surprisingly, the liberal Seattle politicians quietly removed the "boot" as a way to collect on parking tickets. Blacks got another pass.
So, instead of giving preferential treatment to one race how about dropping the powder cocaine limit to 5 grams ? Or....Perhaps we should just make drugs legal, put a big tax on them, and let those so inclined to OD and not be a drag on our society.

4/30/2009 2:58 PM  
Blogger Martin G. Schalz said...

I am rather curious as to what the impact would be on taxpayers if the crack cocaine sentencing laws were the same for powder cocaine.

Some poor slob gets caught with 5 grams of crack, and we have to pay for a minimum of five years of upkeep?

Longer sentences do not seem to be working to curb sales or usage...

4/30/2009 5:01 PM  

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