imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

California-The Prison State

by Gil Friedman Thursday, Jul. 22, 2004 at 2:38 PM

Too many lockups lead to service lockouts

Recently, the Arcata Branch library opened after a 10-day "lockout." Arcata wasn't picked on; each and every library in the county will be closed one week a quarter and reduce weekly hours due to the severe financial budget crises. The library is to be commended for keeping all of the libraries going with everyone sharing this crisis. Nor is the library the only system hurting in Humboldt County. Every agency from fire to home care to the Sheriff's Department to recreational activities are all taking serious cuts. Nor is Humboldt County the only county facing a financial crisis. Virtually every county and city in the state is in one. The reason is that the state, because of its own financial crises, is giving less and less to the counties. Part of the reason the state is broke is that it has certain programs that are tying up considerable resources.

One of these programs is our state prison system. It is one of the few state agencies that continue to grow while schools and other agencies continue to have their funds slashed. While Gov. Davis was in office he was figuratively under house arrest by the Prison Guard Union that was his greatest financial supporter. One of the ways we have to tame the out-of- control prison growth is to give the judges back the right to judge and stop these mandatory minimum sentences, especially in the area of drug violations. What these drug users need is therapy and rehabilitation, not being locked up for 10, 20 or more years under the mandatory minimum sentences. Under these laws, judges are more like file clerks with no discretion and the district attorneys have all the power by their decision on what they decide to charge the defendant.

If the public thinks they can throw violators of the law in prison and forget the key with minimum mandatory sentences and our Three Strikes Law, trying juveniles as adults and then giving 15- and 16-year-olds 25-, 35- and 50-year sentences -- virtually lifetime sentences, with gang-enhancement laws in which any person who is in any way accused of being associated with a gang gets another 15 years added to their sentence -- the public will find that they will pay for this by receiving less services at the state, county and city levels. These cuts will not merely go into the bones of the programs, but into their very marrow.

Many studies have shown that as people age they stop committing crimes, yet many of them go through middle age and even their golden years incarcerated in our prisons. This costs us taxpayers many millions that could be much better spent keeping our libraries open and giving more funds to our fire departments to protect our homes.

A start to correct this situation is to vote yes on Proposition 66 in the November election that amends the Three Strikes Law to require severe sentences only when the current conviction is for specified violent or serious felonies.

I also urge, as I have done, people to write Assemblywoman Patty Berg and State Sen. Wes Chesbro to introduce legislation eliminating all mandatory minimum sentences for all crimes and letting judges go back to what we pay them for -- to make judgments on the individual cases. And on the federal level, we should urge our Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein and Congressman Mike Thompson to sponsor legislation to eliminate all mandatory minimum sentences. If enough of us contact our representatives maybe we can start the ball rolling towards reform, and perhaps one day we will have no more "lockouts" of our libraries.

Gil Friedman is a local attorney and author. He lives in Arcata.

Report this post as:

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.

Local News

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J11 6:58AM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M31 5:20AM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 7:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 8:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 9:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 10:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 9:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 8:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 8:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 11:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 8:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A27 5:37AM


lausd whistle blower A11 6:58AM

Website Upgrade A10 10:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 8:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 6:58PM

Change Links April 2018 A01 6:27PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Paraphysique de psychosomatique S22 6:58AM

Chuck Grassley: Women Abusing, Animal Murdering, Illegal War Supporting Criminal S22 2:58AM

Finance Capitalism and the Digital Economy S21 4:45PM

Muselières syndicales, muselières patronales S21 7:19AM

Jeff Bezos, Amazon, The Washington Post, Whole Foods, Etc S21 2:50AM

Why Choose Nut Milk Over Cows' Milk S21 1:01AM

Antrhopocène, le grand effondrement S19 9:53AM

Abolir l'économie S18 11:18AM

The Dictatorship of Corporations S17 5:26PM

18 Lethal Consequences Of Hunting S17 3:13PM

Paraphysique de l'outplacement déontologue S15 6:51AM

Shopping du bashing S14 8:42AM

After Lehman Brothers, Experts Say Global Financial Crisis Can Happen Again S13 8:28PM

“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen S12 9:30PM

Probabilités de fin d'humanité S12 6:49AM

Florida Area of Migrant Farmworkers Denied Right to Construct Health Clinic near NaplesCIW S11 2:57AM

Steer clear of work morality! S09 12:10PM

The Shortwave Report 09/07/18 Listen Globally! S06 11:23PM

August 2018 Honduras Coup update S06 12:28PM

Brett Kavanaugh Filled The 5th Circuit With Execution Judges S06 6:14AM

Augusta Georgia Woman Gets 5 Year Prison Sentence for Writing About Russians Crime Acts S05 8:29AM

Paraphysique de contextualité S05 8:29AM

Crisis Regulation in Global Capitalism S03 3:39PM

Ex-voto de réification S03 10:24AM

Please Oppose Warmonger, Execution and Torture Supporting Bush Operative Brett Kavanaugh A31 10:45PM

Paraphysique d'exploitation occultation A31 10:24PM

Ryan Zinke Is Charging Taxpayers For A Trophy Hunters' Council A31 2:10PM

Is the Financial Crash 2.0 Coming? A31 10:07AM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy