Statistics show that prison is a likely destination for people who drop out of high school, or do not have a college degree or technical certification. I have been very outspoken in opposition to PPP's in rural areas that rely heavily on an inmate population of young men who look like me. White-collar criminals continue to get away with running the economy into the ground without fear of prosecution because police spend too much time making the easy arrests. The easy arrests I am speaking of are the average street corner drug dealers. These young men do not control the boats or airplanes that bring drugs into this country, but they are certainly considered to be the face of the so called “War on Drugs.”
PPP's need warm bodies to fill those cells to keep the money in the pockets of the executives who running the prison. It is like they have a neon "VACANCY" sign flashing, encouraging young people to keep dropping out of school, keep selling drugs in their own communities, keep robbing, stealing, and killing each other because there are plenty of beds available.
Although the criminal justice system in undoubtedly flawed, it is not the systems fault when young brothers get arrested while standing on the corner with a pocket full of dope. It is not the systems fault when young brothers are sporting a new outfit every week, spending thousands of dollars on platinum teeth, and riding around in custom cars with 28” rims; with no job.
For some, trouble is easier to stay out of than for others, but the bottom line is that we have to start taking responsibility for our own actions and stop putting ourselves in situations that police and the prison industry can take advantage. These people are literally getting rich off a system that is in place for the purpose of correction, hence the name, the Department of Corrections. Not the Department of Rehabilitation or the Department of Get Right once a person is locked up.
In July 2010, Congress changed a 25-year-old law that has subjected tens of thousands of African Americans to long prison terms for crack cocaine convictions while giving far more lenient sentences to those, mainly Whites, caught with the powder form of the drug.
During his presidential campaign, then Senator Obama said, "the wide gap in sentencing cannot be justified and should be eliminated.” The new measure changes a 1986 law, enacted at a time when crack cocaine use was rampant and considered a particularly violent drug (See the death of basketball star Len Bias). Under the old law, a person convicted of crack cocaine possession got the same mandatory prison sentence as someone with 100 times the same amount of powder cocaine.
Five grams of crack equaled a five-year mandatory sentence and 50 grams of crack equaled a 10-year mandatory sentence for first time offenders in comparison to five years mandatory for 500 grams of cocaine.
The new law also eliminates the five-year mandatory minimum sentences for first-time offenders possessing crack, the first time since the Nixon administration that a President has repealed a mandatory minimum sentence requirement. However; it does not apply retroactively and the people incarcerated under the old law cannot get a re-trial, or a reduced sentence.