American Elephants

California “Prison Reform” Creates More Crime by The Elephant's Child

“Out here on the Left Coast, it is beginning to dawn on people that when you release criminals from custody in the name of “prison reform,” it is only the prisons themselves that are reformed. The criminals, those who are ushered out the prison gates into an unwary society, remain as un-reformed as ever.”

That’s retired police officer Jack Dunphy, writing at PJMedia. “In recent years California has enacted a series of reforms to its criminal justice system, the net effect of which has been the lowering of the state’s prison population.” First they shifted penal responsibilities from the state to counties meaning that some felons who would have been in state prisons were serving in county jails. Proposition 47 passed in 2014 redefined some crimes deemed as not violent as misdemeanors, thefts were downgraded, possession of cocaine, heroin and meth for personal use was downgraded as well.

Last November Prop. 57 authorized early release of felons whose crimes were deemed nonviolent, but that included assault with a deadly weapon, battery with serious injury, rape of an unconscious person . burglary of a home and solicitation to commit murder. Nonviolent.

There seems to be, on the Left, an overweening desire to be nice. To not be mean. (Like those of us on the Right.) They are not only tolerant of crimes and misdemeanors of others (the ones that happen to someone else), but they seem to have lost the sense of why we have prisons, why we jail some people, or why we judge some crimes harshly. Even when ill-advised measures are adapted, or silly laws passed, the state’s police officers and courts are forced to deal with them.

The Left achieves whatever they do manage to achieve by dividing America up into voting groups and giving those voting groups nice benefits from other peoples money. They are sure that Blacks and Hispanics  are disproportionately in prison because they can’t seem to think in terms of ordinary people who have committed crimes, or of the basic reason for putting people who have committed crimes in prison. (To protect ordinary people who have not committed crimes from those who do?) It seems to be a common failing on the Left that I don’t quite understand. Immigrants seem to be a group that is not separable into ‘legal’ and ‘illegal’, but I digress. Jack Dunphy continues:

For proof of this, I present as Exhibit A one Michael C. Mejia, age 26, who stands accused of murdering two people in Southern California, one of them a police officer. Police allege that on Monday morning Mejia killed his cousin, Roy Torres, in East Los Angeles and stole his car. Later, while driving the stolen car in Whittier, a suburb about 12 miles southeast of downtown L.A., Mejia rear-ended another car. When police responded to the report of a minor traffic accident, Mejia opened fire on them, killing  Officer Keith Boyer and wounding Officer Patrick Hazell. Mejia was himself wounded in the gun battle but is expected to survive. …

Michael Mejia had demonstrated long before this week that he was the very sort of person who must be kept safely away from his potential victims. In this most elemental function of government, it failed, and now two people have lost their lives for the failure.

Do read the whole thing. It is a very clear illustration of how well-meaning notions wreck lives because people cannot, or do not, think issues through.

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