Pubdate: Tue, 29 Jan 2002
Source: Rutland Herald (VT)
Copyright: 2002 Rutland Herald
Author: Joel Williams


There was a bit of irony in recent stories about the proposed closing of 
the Woodstock jail. I particularly enjoyed Mayor Cassarinois statement (at 
a legislative breakfast) that Rutland City has been getting tough on crime 
and the state just iletis them out the back door.i The Rutland City 
delegation last year sponsored the most hateful bill to surface in Vermont 
in years. The proposed law would have doubled federal sentencing for drugs.

The present system has been incarcerating people for 30-plus years and the 
drugs confiscated equal less than 1 percent of what is out there.

Less than 1 percent is as close to total failure as one can get.

A very high percentage of inmates in Vermont and America are incarcerated 
for non-violent offenses such as drug abuse, or sale.

Prohibition is no more effective for drugs than it was for alcohol. 
Prohibition is always the problem, not the substance. The archaic belief 
that incarceration will stop people from using/abusing drugs is a non 
sequitor. What is the comparison in cost vs. effect?

How much do the taxpayers expend to place inmates in other states because 
our jails are overcrowded with non-violent drug offenders? Any legislation 
proposed needs an economic feasibility discussion. Why not this issue?

Whatis the definition of insanity? iDoing the same thing over again while 
expecting different results.i Compassion, not harm! Cures, not wars!

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