Strike down the Three Strikes Law to end unjust punishments for non-violent drug offenses
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Non-violent drug offenses should not carry the same punishment as violent crimes such as aggravated assault, burglary, and murder. Under the current Three Strikes Law, people with two previous felony offenses are sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 25 years having no possibility of parole. This is leaving thousands with broken homes and an endless loop of children growing up without parents. I know because I grew up in one.
My entire life has been affected in one way or another by drugs. My father was in and out of our county jail until he overdosed on heroin at 36 years old in 2003. His name was Gumesindo. He never committed a single violent crime. Everyone he knew had nothing negative to say about him. By all accounts, he was a good man who looked for help in the wrong places. No one ever attempted to help him with his addiction, our courts simply punished him over and over again. It is my opinion that the Three Strikes Law played a part in his eventual overdose. I feel this way because he was obviously very sick and received nothing to help him overcome this sickness, except for months in a tiny cell. This law merely caused my dad to be away from my mother, myself, and my brother for longer and longer periods of time. And now, there is no more time to be spent be with him. And I know many people that have unfortunately suffered the same fate as my dad and my family. A lot of us do. I believe the only way to solve this issue is by ending the Three Strikes law and coming up with a replacement.
There are many things that the people of this country have done to help those who suffer from addiction. I believe we could do more. First, the Three Strikes Law needs to be struck down or amended to allow for more opportunities for rehabilitation. Some of the money that is being spent on prisons needs to go towards programs that are designed to help this country's non-violent offenders rather than to punish them to the same extent that murderers are punished. I know that, as a society, we must have some sort of justice system to punish those who have done wrong to keep from devolving into anarchy. However, I believe that we should also have a system that we can fall back on when the prisons do not work anymore. Thank you.
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