Skip to comments.Crack-vs.-powder disparity is questioned (Racial Discrimination Alleged)
Posted on 12/25/2007 6:04:55 AM PST by Zakeet
During some of the bloodiest years of the drug wars of the 1980s, crack was seen as far more dangerous than powdered cocaine, and that perception was written into the sentencing laws. But now that notion is under attack like never before.
Criminologists, doctors and other experts say the differences between the two forms of the drug were largely exaggerated and do not justify the way the law comes down 100 times harder on crack.
A push to shrink the disparity in punishments got a boost last month when reduced federal sentencing guidelines went into effect for crack offenses. Then, earlier this month, the U.S. Sentencing Commission, which sets guidelines for federal cases, voted to make the reductions retroactive, allowing some 19,500 inmates, mostly black, to seek reductions in their crack sentences.
Many think the changes are long overdue.
Crack, because it is smoked and gets into the bloodstream faster than snorted cocaine, produces a more intense high and is generally considered more addictive than powdered cocaine.
But experts say that difference does not warrant the 100-to-1 disparity that was written into a 1986 law that set a mandatory minimum prison term of five years for trafficking in 5 grams of crack, or less than the amount in two packets of sugar. It would take 100 times as much cocaine to get the same sentence.
"There's no scientific justification to support the current laws," said Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Many defense lawyers and civil rights advocates say the lopsided perception of crack versus cocaine is rooted in racism. Four out of every five crack defendants are black, while most powdered-cocaine defendants are white.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Because one crime is committed more often than another, it should be punished less? Playing the race card for crimes is the goal, and these are the same people who cite “discriminatory” prosecution of blacks, due to the disparity in prison inmate composition.
Maybe it’s like giving different sentences for DUI while loaded on gin and tonics versus DUI while loaded on Colt 45s.
How are the crimes different, that they should received different sentences?
I’ve never heard of someone smoking crack not being an addict. On the other hand I’ve known many people who used cocaine in the 80’s and none of them became addicted. The only relation between the two is one is made from the other, almost like pseudophedrine and crystal meth.
Hey - I’ve got an idea: Either fight the War on Drugs to win, or quit altogether. Cocain vs. Crack - who cares. They both are illegal, and both are horrible, destructive poisons on humans.
In the meantime - how many welfare babies being born on powder cocaine?
If the race-baiters want to stir the pot, how about working on something a bit more constructive, like figuring out WHY blacks are more likely to buy/sell/use crack cocaine. Then begin dealing with that reason. And I don’t want to hear anything about “the white man makes them” or “they gotta have a drug, and that is what they can afford”...
If you commit a crime while under the influence of one of these deadly drugs, and your lawyer tries to defend your actions because you were impaired Forget it, any good judge will throw your dumb arse in jail and your lawyer out of court. Taking illegal drugs is just that ILLEGAL there are no color lines just stupidity and that aint Racism!
PS. If you want some insight into the crack problem google crack ho and crack whore.
Unless you believe all drug laws should be abolished, a thought I sometime entertain, this is a ridiculous turn of events, just a deadly form of political correctness. The only drug worse than crack is crystal meth.
THIS is the reason they're "re-thinking" the laws. Period. It's a political decision, pure and simple.
"If I had a well-to-do family whose wife was at home snorting coke versus someone who is a mother who is out on the street using crack, the babies would look very similar," Belcher said."
That's the politically correct thing to say. But take drugs out of the picture. You can't be serious in saying that the babies of a well-to-do family and of a street mother are equally healthy, physically and mentally.
The average crack bust involves a suspect with a criminal,often violent record.The average coke bust does not.
Putting aside liberal bed-wetting “root cause” imavictimtoo psychobbable,the main purpose of the law is to remove bad guys,especially really bad guys,
from decent society.
For gooder or better—law to the letter.
Sorry, I don't recall any names or exact details because time has made my memory of the details a little hazy and all of it was filtered through the MSM at the time so who knows how much of that was true in the first place.
Not only that but they Blamed it on the CIA
If we wanted to be racist we would unleash these crack peddlers on their victims, most of whom are black.
IMO do not lower the sentences for crack, raise them accordingly for cocaine. Done, fixed, over with.
I remember some of that too, that crack was cheaper, and more addictive.
Crime wave coming.
That’s not the reality. Crack is coke + baking soda.
Does one get a harsher sentence for hashish, as opposed to marijuana?
LOL, no clue. There shouldn’t be. IMO, same should apply to morphine and heroin.
There is only one reason Crack penalties are under fire: Race. It has nothing to do with anything else and anyone who tells you different is lying.
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