Recently Prop 47 was passed in California. Let me start by saying I am not political at all. I vote, but only on the measures, propositions, and bills and people I truly understand and have an opinion on. (If that is even possible....I only have the information presented to the public.) You can read more about prop 47 here. It is a proposition written to drop non-violent offenses, drug crimes, theft crimes, to misdemeanors. The money saved from housing all of these non-violent offenders will go into the newly created "Safe Neighborhoods and Schools" fund.
I have mixed feelings on this. First, OF COURSE, if my girl were to be arrested for a drug related offense, I would love for her to not be a felon! I would love for a lot of kids I know here and in real life, to not be in danger of becoming a felon. Having a felony on your record shuts doors like nothing else.
On the other hand, I feel like, isn't the state of CA. almost enabling drug addicts to continue in their use by making the punishment for carrying, using, and selling, a slap on the wrist? The bottom line is its all about money. Drug addiction/abuse is a raging firestorm of an epidemic and our jails can't afford to keep housing these people. So rather then lets try to find a solution for the root, lets just pretend its not a big deal.
We as a society tend to normalize behavior that we don't understand or can't control. How many of us, BEFORE our children's addiction had strong opinions on addiction and drug related crimes and drug addicts themselves? As our children got going though, how many of us said, "Well its just pot or beer." "Wellll they are just struggling, trying to figure out who they are." "Wellll the teachers don't know how to teach...thats why he/she is failing everything." As we got in deeper and deeper with our kids issues, we let more and more of our standards go *to make it bearable, manageable, comprehendable* for ourselves.
I feel like that is what the state of Ca. is doing. They can't control it, they can't afford to really fight it, so lets say its not that big of a deal and we will book and release now and give the money saved to an organization that will help promote safe neighborhoods and schools. But HOW will they do that if the drug epidemic isn't being dealt with? In some real and humane way?
As usual lots of questions with no good answers. Its such a sad state of affairs.