Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Flatow: Five People Obama Could Pardon

Nicole Flatow
At ThinkProgress.org, Nicole Flatow hits a home run with a piece entitled: "Five People Obama Could Pardon In Addition To The Turkey." Says Flatow, "Clemency reform may very well be the next criminal justice reform item on the White House agenda" ... we can only hope!

Meanwhile, here is Flatow's compelling list: 1. Weldon Angelos (sporting a clemency petition supported by "more than 100 prominent figures including former prosecutors and judges") 2. Clarence Aaron, a "nominal player in a drug deal who is serving a triple life sentence."  3. Jesse Webster who is serving "life without parole" for a nonviolent drug offense. 4. Chris Williams, a "medical marijuana" distributor who complied with state law but was subject to a federal raid and is now in federal prison. 5. Kenneth George Harvey Jr. who was sentenced to life "because of a racist disparity."  

Flatow also observes:
Before the Fair Sentencing Act was passed in 2010, the sentence was 100 times more severe for offenses involving crack cocaine, more widely used among African Americans, than for those involving powder cocaine, associated with whites ... When Congress passed the Fair Sentencing Act in 2010, it recognized the racism that had pervaded the sentencing for too long. Thus far, most courts have not applied the law retroactively, but the federal appeals court that has called perpetuation of this disparity intentional racial “subjugation.” President Obama could honor the spirit of the law by pardoning or commuting the sentences of the thousands of inmates who would have already been released had the Fair Sentencing Act been in place.
Bravo! We could not have said it any better. Please consider taking the time to read the entire well-written piece here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

... and countless others whom you've never heard of, that made bad decisions 20+ yrs ago & have lived respectable lives since.

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