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Friday, April 15, 2005

Republicans On Drugs

Via Hit & Run, we learn:

Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has rewritten his Defending America's Most Vulnerable: Safe Access to Drug Treatment and Child Protection Act (known by the catchy acronym DAMV:SADTCPA), which he introduced before the Supreme Court's decision in U.S. v. Booker. Apparently Sensenbrenner decided DAMV:SADTCPA wasn't draconian enough. The bill, which has been passed by a subcommittee and will soon be considered by the full House Judiciary Committee, retains the 10-year mandatory minimum sentence for anyone over 21 who supplies any quantity of any drug to someone under 18, with a life sentence for a second such offense. In addition, according to an analysis by Families Against Mandatory Minimums, the bill would:

* make the sentencing guidelines mandatory again, forbidding downward departures in almost all cases;
* virtually eliminate the "safety valve" provision for low-level, nonviolent drug offenders;
* create a three-year mandatory minimum for parents who see or hear about drug dealing targeting or near their children and fail to report it;
* create a 10-year mandatory minimum for parents who sell drugs when their children are nearby; and
* increase the mandatory minimum for selling drugs in "drug-free zones," which in practice cover almost anywhere within many cities, to five years.

Umm, what was that middle one again?

Okay, so I take my four-year-old to the park, let him run on the playground while I read the paper. I look up, and see a local gang member sell pot to someone while leaning on the poles holding up swings my son is swinging on.

My choices are now:
1) Do not report this to the cops, and risk a mandatory 3 year minimum sentence in Federal prison, or;
2) Report this to the cops, and risk a gang member blowing me full of holes.

I suppose we should be lucky that they only limit this dilemma to people who are responsible for the care of children...

This is one of the most interesting articles since few months on your blog. Congratulations dear admin.
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