After decades of using incarceration as the country's primary response to crime, leading Republicans and Democrats are embracing safe, fair, and cost-effective prison reform. As Illinois prepares to elect its next governor, voters should ask the candidates what their vision and goals are for the state's crowded and under-resourced $1.3-billion prison system.
This move could result in the release of thousands of low-level federal inmates caught up in the drug war. For a president who, hitherto, had the most conservative pardon record in recent history (e.g. in Obama's first term, he pardoned 1 in 50 applicants, while Ronald Reagan pardoned 1 in 3), such a shift is noteworthy.
We are, this year, 50 years removed from the civil rights movement's "Freedom Summer" of 1964. To be sure, changes in our society have been nothing short of revolutionary. Yet over half a century later, one wonders if white supremacy remains rooted in the American psyche. Is there a racial caste system in America?