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Monday, August 12, 2013

Holder takes step in right direction?

Wow, in the space of a month I’ve agreed with 2 people I thought I’d never agree with on any political issue. The 1st was Jimmy Carter who said in the wake of the government surveillance revealed by  ‘whistleblower’ Snowden:

Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter … in the wake of the NSA spying scandal criticized the American political system. “America has no functioning democracy,” Carter said Tuesday at a meeting of the “Atlantic Bridge” in Atlanta.

The other is AG Holder in this article from the Washington Post. I don’t think his motive is saving money as he says in the article though because that goes counter to everything else this administration has been doing; which is spending this nation into economic collapse.

It probably has to do with race, as statistically blacks are incarcerated at a greater rate than whites. It’s part of the strategy of ‘racial division’ Breitbart warned us about before he was assassinated!

This has been the most racists administration since the civil war. They allow voter intimidation as long as it’s blacks doing the intimidation, and refuse to pursue cases of black racism.

One of the president’s recent Executive Orders greatly changes the playing field in favor of blacks in the classroom by creating a massive brand new African-American education bureaucracy; Executive Order -- White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African Americans. This is affirmative action on steroids!

Whatever the reason I believe it is a step in the right direction. Why should the government make criminals out of some drug users and not others, e. g., alcohol users. I don’t think it’s within the governments rightful powers to monitor what we eat, drink, or smoke.

Look what happened with ‘prohibition’; the murder, mayhem, and gangster culture it created. The ‘war on drugs’ has had the same miserable effect but on a global scale.

Holder seeks to avert mandatory minimum sentences for some low-level drug offenders

Video: In California Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder plans to call for scaling back harsh sentences for some drug crimes.

By Sari Horwitz, Published: August 11 | Updated: Monday, August 12, 12:01 AM

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. is set to announce Monday that low-level, nonviolent drug offenders with no ties to gangs or large-scale drug organizations will no longer be charged with offenses that impose severe mandatory sentences.

The new Justice Department policy is part of a comprehensive prison reform package that Holder will reveal in a speech to the American Bar Association in San Francisco, according to senior department officials. He is also expected to introduce a policy to reduce sentences for elderly, nonviolent inmates and find alternatives to prison for nonviolent criminals.

Justice Department lawyers have worked for months on the proposals, which Holder wants to make the cornerstone of the rest of his tenure.

“A vicious cycle of poverty, criminality and incarceration traps too many Americans and weakens too many communities,” Holder plans to say Monday, ­according to excerpts of his ­remarks that were provided to The Washington Post. “However, many aspects of our criminal justice system may actually exacerbate this problem rather than alleviate it.”

Holder is calling for a change in Justice Department policies to reserve the most severe penalties for drug offenses for serious, high-level or violent drug traffickers. He has directed his 94 U.S. attorneys across the country to develop specific, locally tailored guidelines for determining when federal charges should be filed and when they should not.

“Too many Americans go to too many prisons for far too long and for no good law enforcement reason,” Holder plans to say. “We cannot simply prosecute or incarcerate our way to becoming a safer nation.”

The attorney general can make some of these changes to drug policy on his own. He is giving new instructions to federal prosecutors on how they should write their criminal complaints when charging low-level drug offenders, to avoid triggering the mandatory minimum sentences. Under certain statutes, inflexible sentences for drug crimes are mandated regardless of the facts or conduct in the case, reducing the discretion of prosecutors, judges and juries.

Some of Holder’s other initiatives will require legislative change. Holder is urging passage of legislation with bipartisan support that is aimed at giving federal judges more discretion in applying mandatory minimum sentences to certain drug offenses.

“Such legislation will ultimately save our country billions of dollars,” Holder said of legislation supported by Sens. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.), Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.), Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.). “Although incarceration has a role to play in our justice system, widespread incarceration at the federal, state and local levels is both ineffective and unsustainable.”

The cost of incarceration in the United States was $80 billion in 2010, according to the Justice Department. While the U.S. population has increased by about a third since 1980, the federal prison population has grown by about 800 percent. Justice Department officials said federal prisons are operating at nearly 40 percent over capacity.

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