The cellphone video "reality footage" just doesn't stop. Black men are shot, killed, handcuffed. The shortcomings of their prematurely terminated lives soon become public knowledge, vaguely justifying the shocking wrongness of the officer's action -- always poisoning the grief.
Drug-related incarceration has little to do with the risks of recreational drug use, and everything to do with keeping the systems in place that fuel violence, systemic racism, the cycle of poverty, and the prison pipeline.
One of the most innovative reforms in the country is one you've probably never heard of. That's about to change, because Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) is transforming the national discussion about how to end the war on drugs and mass incarceration.
Regardless of their hardest attempts they and their families were constantly caught in this cycle -- a cycle that our country is complicit in creating, supporting and allowing to continue even when it is not functioning correctly.
Buried beneath the Holy Week headlines about a religious freedom law in Indiana was a remarkable event: President Obama shortened the sentences of 22 federal prisoners under the pardon power, and wrote them a letter. It was a fitting gesture for a season of hope and renewal.
Stopping the drug war is a major change that, in one fell swoop, would ameliorate a whole host of problems for poor children and their families. Both liberals and conservatives are getting behind the idea.
Just as the U.S. wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya fertilized the field for IS, another U.S. war, the so-called War on Drugs, opened new horizons for the drug cartels.
When it comes to drug overdose, we may be winning one battle, but losing the war. As deaths involving prescription painkillers are leveling off, the latest stats on heroin fatalities could not be more dire. What's often lost behind the headlines is that the trends in prescription painkiller and heroin abuse are linked.
As an important United Nations meeting of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) started in Vienna this week, diplomats from around the world were confronted with a spectacular installation of giant black and white photos.
"In this city, people are killing each other over marijuana more so than anything that we had to deal with an '80s and '90s with heroin and cocaine," said Bratton. "We just see marijuana everywhere when we make these arrests, when we get these guns off the streets."
The recent capture of La Tuta (Servando Gomez), the head of the Knights Templar drug cartel, reminds us that the lethal mix of religion and terrorism isn't peculiar to the Middle East.
Just think of where we could be as a nation if some of the people spending years in prison for a nonviolent drug offense could have, instead, studied sustainable architecture or climate change adaptation?
While many people are clearly in favor of legalization around the country, our leaders in Washington still think they know what's best for us. Logic and reason don't always prevail in America. The moral police do.
Policing today is focused on enforcing moral behavior, which, regardless of one's opinions about legislating and enforcing personal behavior, has had devastating consequences.
Scott Walker wants to place new burdens on poor people. His justification? He's fighting for small businesses. He should stop pandering to the most extreme elements of the Republican base and start listening to employers across his state.