Professor Loury devoted 1500 words to his basic conclusion:
I believe we should be pursuing far-reaching reforms in our criminal justice system. We should invest more in helping the troubled people — our fellow citizens — caught in the law enforcement web to find a constructive role in society, and less in punishing them for punishment’s sake.Notice the way he describes robbers, rapists, murderers, dope dealers, burglars, carjackers, thieves, and wife-batterers:
troubled people caught in the law enforcement webAs if the police, the courts, and the community were predatory spiders catching innocent flies.
Of course, the opposite of what Professor Loury imagines is in fact the case. Criminals are not innocent victims of the law enforcement system, they are willful predators, who prey on the weak and the innocent in order to satisfy their own desires. And the purpose of incarcerating them is not punishment for punishment's sake, the purpose of incarceration is not punishment at all -- its purpose is simply to keep them off the street so that their innocent victims can have some respite time from their depredations.
Professor Loury, of course, is a racialist. His major concern with the administration of criminal justice in the United States is that it appears to affect his own race more than he thinks it should:
Another inescapable fact is that most of those incarcerated are black and Hispanic men. (They constitute approximately two-thirds of those being held in state prisons and municipal jails.)And in typical antinomian fashion, this Gramscian apologist for murderers, rapists, and dope dealers thinks that imprisonment causes the crimes for which the imprisoned are incarcerated:
Overrepresentation of blacks among lawbreakers is the result as much as it is the cause of our overrepresentation among the imprisoned — a fact about which the conventional racial narrative has too little to say. Nevertheless, this is a principal source of the tension in interactions between the police and black men like me.And what were Professor Loury's interactions with the police? He describes them:
Readers should know that I have had my own run-ins with the law. Twenty-two years ago a former girlfriend accused me of assault. While the charges were dropped, I had to endure the indignity of being “processed” by the police and judged in the press. Later that year, I was caught in possession of a controlled substance, spent the night in jail, and was required to enroll in a drug treatment program for my sins. My interest in the issues of race and law enforcement reflects more than academic curiosity.Readers should also realize that in neither of those two episodes, including one that involved a "controlled substance," was Professor Loury incarcerated. And the "controlled substance" was (according to a contemporaneous article in the New Duranty Times) marijuana and cocaine. He just can't bring himself to name it in the Times, because to do so would give the lie to his claim that we need to go about "ratcheting down the federal penalties for low-level drug trafficking." Yet he still has the audacity to claim that:
We should seriously consider that many of our sentences are too long — “three strikes” laws may be good politics, but they are an irrational abomination as policy. We should definitely consider decriminalizing most drug use. We need to reinvent parole.On the contrary, my dear Professor. "Reinventing" parole and shortening sentences will do nothing but increase the population of criminals in the community, and the crimes they commit will worsen the plague. "Three strikes" laws are designed to take incorrigible criminals off the streets, and prevent them from committing more crimes.
What I find particularly offensive about Professor Loury's advocacy on behalf of rapists, murderers, carjackers, thieves, and dope dealers is that most of the victims of the criminals whose cause he champions are in fact members of the same black community that Professor Loury claims to be supporting. The victims murdered by the black murderers who are let off the hook by black urban juries are overwhelmingly other black men. It is the black community in which, as Professor Loury phrases it, "drug trafficking and gang activity are important parts of the social economy of the inner city."
Professor Loury should spend a few minutes to consider that the black criminals whose careers he would facilitate are not in fact victims of the criminal justice system, but victimizers of their own community. Unfortunately, the inner city black communities have come to tolerate a level of lawlessness which the hard-working, church-going, family-raising black men and women who migrated from the deep South would never have allowed.
And there you have the problem in a nutshell. The black family survived slavery, the Civil War, Reconstruction, Jim Crow, World Wars I & II, and the Depression. But the black family could not survive the liberal wrecking ball of the Great Society programs that facilitated illegitimacy and idleness. A once proud community of men and women whose seemingly infinite capacity for backbreaking work made them sought-after by industrial employers in the Northern cities, has been reduced to dependency by liberal politicians who created a socialistic plantation where docile, reliable Democratic voters were used to perpetuate their own helplessness. And reduced to a condition of tolerating the crime and mayhem that is tearing it apart.
Such is the America that socialistic liberals wish for us all.
What I find a bit odd is Professor Loury's personal trajectory. At the time of his arrest for marijuana and cocaine possession, the New Duranty Times described him as a conservative:
Mr. Loury, a conservative black scholar, is known for his view that socially destructive ''behavior patterns'' in the black community are responsible for economic disparities between blacks and whites.
A vocal critic of affirmative action, Mr. Loury said in an interview last spring, ''The criminal behavior of a relatively small number of young black men in big central cities is in my judgment a critical factor undermining the quality of life of black and white people who live in those cities, and also a contributing factor to race relations.''
I wonder how he went from understanding the effects of the unbridled criminality of some black men on the black community as an organic entity, to blaming "the negative and self-defeating effects that our policy of mass incarceration is having on the communities where large numbers of young black and Hispanic men live."
He is joining a growing movement against any kind of incarceration. It won't surprise most of my readers to learn that the same leftist Spanish government that wants to give human rights to apes, has abolished life imprisonment.
In the first place, the liberals agitate against the death penalty. Because life imprisonment without parole "accomplishes the same thing." Once the death penalty is abolished, they agitate against life imprisonment. They are in fact against any sanction against the criminal, they admire the criminal impulse, and they see the criminal as a nascent, inchoate revolutionary whose sociopathic tendencies need only to be channeled in the right direction. Like Vasili Blokhin - who personally executed tens of thousands of innocents with his own hands:
Blokhin initially decided on an ambitious quota of 300 executions per night, and engineered an efficient system in which the prisoners were individually led to a small antechamber—which had been painted red and was known as the "Leninist room"—for a brief and cursory positive identification, before being handcuffed and led into the execution room next door. The room was specially designed with padded walls for soundproofing, a sloping concrete floor with a drain and hose, and a log wall for the prisoners to stand against. Blokhin—outfitted in a leather butcher's apron, cap, and shoulder-length gloves to protect his uniform—then pushed the prisoner against the log wall and shot him once in the base of the skull with a German Walther Model 2 .25 ACP pistol. He had brought a briefcase full of his own Walther pistols, since he did not trust the reliability of the standard-issue Soviet TT-30 for the frequent, heavy use he intended. The use of a German pocket pistol, which was commonly carried by Nazi intelligence agents, also provided plausible deniability of the executions if the bodies were discovered later.
Between 20 to 30 local NKVD agents, guards and drivers were pressed into service to escort prisoners to the basement, confirm identification, then remove the bodies and hose down the blood after each execution. Although some of the executions were carried out by Senior Lieutenant of State Security Andrei M. Rubanov, Blokhin was the primary executioner and, true to his reputation, liked to work continuously and rapidly without interruption. In keeping with NKVD policy and the overall "black" nature of the operation, the executions were conducted at night, starting at dark and continuing until just prior to dawn. The initial quota of 300 was lowered by Blokhin to 250 after the first night, when it was decided that all further executions should take place in total darkness. The bodies were continuously loaded onto covered flat-bed trucks through a back door in the execution chamber and trucked, twice a night, to Mednoye, where Blokhin had arranged for a bulldozer and two NKVD drivers to dispose of bodies at an unfenced site. Each night, 24 to 25 trenches, measuring eight to ten meters total, were dug to hold the night's corpses, and each trench was covered up before dawn. Blokhin and his team worked without pause for ten hours each night, with Blokhin executing an average of one prisoner every three minutes. At the end of the night, Blokhin provided vodka to all his men.
But you see, Blokhin was from a poor peasant family. And in accordance with the sort of policies that Professor Loury advocates, Blokhin was the beneficiary of Bolshevist policies that were designed to enable criminals like him more "to find a constructive role in society, and less in punishing them for punishment’s sake."There are plenty of advocates for the criminals. The same issue of the New Duranty Times had a heartrending news story about the Connecticut physician whose wife and daughter were brutally murdered by two habitual criminals in 2007.
The two criminals were psychopathic lowlifes:
Defense attorneys said this week in court that their offer to plead guilty in exchange for life in prison could have ended it all. But they said prosecutors refused because they want to win death sentences.
A trial could begin in January.
Petit countered that an attorney for Hayes was trying to shift blame to him and prosecutors for not accepting a plea bargain, ''when it was his client who helped kill three innocent people.''
Hayes and Komisarjevsky, who were on parole after serving prison time for burglary, are accused of breaking into Petit's home, beating him and forcing his wife to withdraw thousands of dollars from a bank before they strangled her. They've pleaded not guilty to capital felony murder, sexual assault, kidnapping and arson.It could drag on for years:
Phyllis Bricker of Baltimore has sat through 26 years of court hearings since her parents were murdered in 1983. Their killer, John Booth-El, remains on death row.
''It's hard on the family, very hard,'' Bricker said. ''Your life is on hold because you never know when another trial is coming up, another appeal is coming up.''
One time, Bricker said, the defendant turned to her family and said, ''See you next year.''
Despite the protracted battle, Bricker said she does not favor a sentence of life without parole. She said that option did not exist at the time of the crime and she's skeptical prisoners would be kept behind bars for life.
She's right about that. The liberals have more sympathy for the criminals than for the victims.
But the people aren't fooled:
A Quinnipiac poll released Nov. 7, 2007, less than four months after the killings found that 73 percent of Connecticut voters believed the two suspects in the Cheshire murders should be executed, while 23 percent said they shouldn't.
Gun permit applications in Cheshire, about 14 miles north of New Haven, jumped substantially after the Petits were attacked.
The liberals have handcuffed the police. Race-mongers intimidate the law-abiding with the bluster and buffoonery of an Al Sharpton, and the smooth sophistry of a Professor Loury.
But perhaps Professor Loury is right about excessive incarceration. Or at least excessively long incarceration:
If Hayes and Komisarjevsky are convicted and sentenced to die, their appeals could easily continue for decades. In 2005, Connecticut serial killer Michael Ross was the first person executed in New England in 45 years -- even after waiving his appeals, Ross was behind bars for more than 20 years before he was put to death.
''It was a load off of our shoulders,'' said Edwin Shelly, whose daughter was Ross' seventh victim. ''The hate is gone because there is no one to hate.''
Raymond Roode, whose daughter also was killed by Ross, said he is glad Ross was executed.
''The finality of the death penalty is the thing that appeals to me,'' Roode said. ''It doesn't matter how long it takes.''
VIA MEMEORANDUM: Discussion: Don Surber, Whiskey Fire, Washington Post, The New Republic and Sentencing Law and Policy