Thursday, November 1, 2012

Do These Pot Sentences Make Sense?

This interesting article over at Salon presents some of "the harshest penalties handed down for pot in recent history" and may include some cases drug war-watchers are familiar with.

FAMM isn't working to legalize marijuana or medical marijuana; rather, our goal is sentences that fit the crime and the individual.  Federal marijuana offenses still carry mandatory minimum sentences of five, 10, 20 years or even life without parole.  Thousands of marijuana offenders still get them every year.

These harsh sentences should raise serious concerns among voters and taxpayers.  Locking up one federal pot offender for a year costs $28,000, and the federal prison system is already severely overcrowded.  Are mandatory minimums for pot crimes the best use of our scarce prison beds and budget resources?  Do those mandatory minimums make us safer?  Do they result in just punishments?

As the debates on medical marijuana, pot legalization, and pot decriminalization swirl around us, the discussion of fair and individualized sentencing for marijuana offenses (and all drug offenses) can be overlooked.  FAMM is still taking a hard look at the need for proportionate and individualized punishment for pot, because it's still missing from our justice system.

1 Comment:

Anonymous said...

I think it is so cousin got 20 years...I can't believe that let men out of prison who comment murder and leave the others in...