Federal oversight of California's prison system calls for reduction of prison population in the next two years. We have the means to do it, along with the support of democratic legislators and the governor. Now the only roadblock is republicans, who are continuing to use the 'tough on crime' rhetoric to prevent California from doing what needs to happen: cutting sentences short for nonviolent offenders, reducing or eliminating parole for the low risk offenders, as other states already do, and using other reasonable means to reduce the number of prison inmates.
While the state is actively cutting programs and assistance to people with demonstrable needs--e.g., huge cuts to education, assistants for the disabled, etc.--to feed the extraordinary costly and ineffective system of corrections, republicans are truly demonstrating how much they are completely out of touch with the reality of California.
The state of California of course appealed the three judge panel's decision, which is now in the U.S. Supreme Court. We should be hearing about their decision shortly.Posted by jackson at September 8, 2009 8:12 AM