Setting a level for hypocrisy usually not so blatantly shown by Democrats, Senator Dianne Feinstein is hopping mad that the government spied on her computers. The irony is so thick you can spread it on toast.
For those of us who consider criminal justice reform to be one of the leading civil rights issues of our time, these are hopeful signs that we might be entering a new era. We are no longer turning a blind eye to the damage being done to our communities.
By many measures, there is growing momentum for criminal justice reform. But any optimism needs to be tempered by the very modest rate of incarceration decline, 1.8 percent in the past year. At this rate, it will take until 2101 -- 88 years -- for the prison population to return to its 1980 level.
From the Capitol to the courtrooms, prosecutors can chart a new path on public safety in California by championing at both local and state levels one of the biggest ways we can transform our justice system in this generation--sentencing reform.
Politicians have held strong to the conventional wisdom that being "tough on crime" will win elections and appease the public's appetite for safety. But the pendulum of public opinion is starting to swing in the other direction.
The legislature's ability to affect the prison caseload, and thus the corrections budget, rests in its prerogative to write, and when necessary, re-write the state's criminal sentencing and parole laws.