Monday, August 12, 2013

Something Decent Out of the Obama Administration

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, reports WaPo.

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, says WaPo. He is also expected to introduce a policy to reduce sentences for elderly, nonviolent inmates and find alternatives to prison for nonviolent criminals.

Of course the devil is in the details and even on its face it doesn't go far enough, but it appears to be a step in the right direction. A better step  in this direction, from a libertarian perspective, would be to repeal all drug laws.  But this does seem to be a small step in the right direction.

According to WaP, Holder's prepared remarks reveal that he plans to say:
A vicious cycle of poverty, criminality and incarceration traps too many Americans and weakens too many communities. However, many aspects of our criminal justice system may actually exacerbate this problem rather than alleviate it.

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


  1. "We cannot simply prosecute or incarcerate our way to becoming a safer nation."

    Neither can we drone, destroy, sanction, and war our way to becoming a safe nation, but that's another issue....sort of.

  2. "Something decent out of the Obama administration"

    When's the last time we've read this? No, seriously, I can't remember the last time something good came from this administration and would like to know.