Step by step, month by month, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, as left us breathless as he and the Obama Administration have begun to heal America by destroying some of the malignant tentacles of the 40-year-old War on Drugs.
April 2013 will become one of the greatest landmark in establishing human rights in our own country because Holder’s most recent efforts will expand the eligibility for clemency to the 20% of all current prisoners who are serving sentences for marijuana possession, eventually freeing tens of thousands of people and improving the future for just as many families. He’s hiring more lawyers to free more and more people from jails and prisons.
In order to keep up with the influx of applications, Holder says the Department of Justice will assign more lawyers to review the applications. “As a society, we pay much too high a price whenever our system fails to deliver the just outcomes necessary to deter and punish crime, to keep us safe, and to ensure that those who have paid their debts have a chance to become productive citizens,” Holder said. “Our expanded clemency application process will aid in this effort. And it will advance the aims of our innovative new Smart on Crime initiative – to strengthen the criminal justice system, promote public safety, and deliver on the promise of equal justice under law.
This is a prime example of the progress at its best, and the further dismantling of completely coercive and useless systems. Things like racially motivated “stop and frisk” are unconstitutional in the first place and techniques like it are headed for the dustbin of history, at long last. Most important, we are seeing the first reversal of the corrupt and coercive corporate prison industry. Amazingly, as U.S. taxpayers we have been paying for the privilege of this industry’s Washington lobbyists wasting our time fluffing our congressmen, judges, and local communities for longer and more severe sentences, for the express purpose of improving profits, mostly on the backs of people of color, who have been ensnared by the War on Drugs because of poverty and joblessness.
What do you think?
Is there anything about the War on Drugs worth saving?
How will society change once this domestic war has ended, beyond the end of penalizing drug users?
What do you think of the very concept of for-profit prisons? Aren’t they a brick and motor conflict of interest?