Pubdate: Mon, 18 Jul 2011 Source: Honolulu Star-Advertiser (HI) Copyright: 2011 Star Advertiser Contact: http://www.staradvertiser.com/info/Star-Advertiser_Letter_to_the_Editor.html Website: http://www.staradvertiser.com/ Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/5154 Author: John Cheever CRIMINAL JUSTICE PRIORITIES SKEWED I've seen three news items recently that have left me scratching my head about our criminal justice system. Laurie Temple wrote about how 60 percent of drug offenders in Hawaii are busted for non-violent crimes such as possession ("The failed drug war: Time to change tactics," Star-Advertiser, Island Voices, June 17). More recently, a drug bust was reported in which the 25 pounds of marijuana found would likely get the offenders 20 years in prison. And then on July 3 we learned about a convicted sex offender -- whose first conviction was for sexually assaulting minors in 1995 -- being sentenced to 10 years in prison for another sexual assault. Given the previous example, does that sound like the punishment fits the crime, especially for a repeat offender? Whether marijuana should be legalized is a topic for other letters, but if our policymakers are supposed to be protecting us through the laws they pass, then we have some serious thinking to do about the way we exercise the fundamental principle of justice. John Cheever Honolulu - --- MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.