Walter Brasch: Most of the questions—and responses—in the three presidential debates had been asked—and answered—several times during the campaign. But there are critical questions that were not asked.
rop 36 reduces the prison sentences for those who committed a non-violent, non-serious felony as their third strike. The new sentence would be twice the usual sentence for the crime they committed as a third strike.
Tom Degan: Is Mitt Romney a gay-bashing homophobe? Probably not. The conclusion I’ve drawn is that the man is a sociopath.
Bruce Reilly: ALEC and for-profit prison lobbyists are fighting to stop the decriminalization of marijuana, to lengthen sentences, eliminate Good Time credits, curtail parole, incarcerate immigrants, maintain mandatory minimums, and increase Three Strikes laws because these efforts will increase their profits. But is this in the public’s best interest?
Dick Price & Sharon Kyle: California’s 58 counties must deal with a sudden influx of state prison inmates, straining their jails and requiring innovative sentencing and supervisory programs.
Sharon Kyle: In a relatively short period of time, our nation has incarcerated enough people to create the second largest city in the United States. Releasing a few tens of thousand prisoners for overcrowding won’t change much or will it?
ACLU Forum: The number of nonviolent, non-serious, non-sexual prisoners the San Gabriel Valley alone will receive through 2012 is between 1,000 and 1,500. What will be the impact on local communities and families of these (primarily) men?
Ron Kaye: The conversation that started in Pasadena is long overdue. The failure of locking people for long sentences in overcrowded conditions without effective rehabilitation and support programs was clear a long time ago.
Bruce Reilly: I am not too troubled possible financial bankruptcy due to prisons, particularly child prisons. The possible moral bankruptcy, however, runs much deeper than any bottom line.
Andrea Nill: Senate Bill 6 would cost Kentucky a net $40 million a year in court, prison and foster-care costs. Yet, the Kentucky senate voted 24-14 last week to pass the bill without knowing its cost.
Jasmyne Cannick: Rather than call Eagles owner Jeffrey Laurie, the President could have really made an impact by addressing employers throughout America on the importance of giving all ex-prisoners—regardless of their football playing ability—a second chance and freeing them from a life without the possibility of employment.
Carol Strickman: The best way to ensure that people successfully reenter society is to provide resources to support them upon release. Prisoners who have maintained family ties and have housing and employment opportunities awaiting them will do better than those who don’t.
The drug war has also unleashed a torrent of racism in the form of unjust sentencing, which confines crack-cocaine users who are mostly black to prison for longer terms than powder snorters, who are mostly white.