Insofar as the war on drugs is concerned, the trend, over the last couple of decades, has been increasingly in the direction of de-escalating punishment and even decriminalizing select offenses and substances. Whatever one’s opinion is on the use of illicit drugs, the fact that said use has continued to grow…in spite of the near-incalculable sums of money that have been spent on the crackdown effort…long ago opened the door to at least the consideration of approaching the worldwide drug problem in a modified fashion.
Well, as far as that goes, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is having none of it. According to the New York Daily News, Sessions is going “nuclear” on the war on drugs, and demanding that prosecutors across the country seek the longest possible sentences for drug offenses.
In a memo recently sent to all federal prosecutors, Sessions wrote, “It is a core principle that prosecutors should charge and pursue the most serious, readily provable offense. This policy affirms our responsibility to enforce the law, is moral and just, and produces consistency.”
This about-face is sure to push incarceration rates to the absolute limit. The U.S. already has one of the world’s highest, and a not-insignificant number of those behind bars have been convicted of nonviolent drug offenses.
Sessions, however, is particularly well known for his strict law-and-order postures, and has said that illegal drug use is at the source of a crime wave that presently grips the nation.
By Robert G. Yetman, Jr. Editor At Large