Saturday, August 23, 2008

Open letter to Barack Obama concerning his running mate selection

Dear Senator Obama,

I understand why you picked Senator Biden as your running mate, but I am troubled by it. I am deeply concerned by comments you made about him during the race for the nomination. At a debate in 2007, you stated that the Senator has been on the right side of racial issues. These comments indicate one of two things. Either you are not fully aware of his legislative history from the 1980s or you have overlooked it. I hope it is the former.

Senator Biden is the author of arguably the most detrimental law to blacks in the post Jim Crow era. I am referring to the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986 which established the 100-1 disparity between powder and rock cocaine sentencing. The Senator recently reversed his position on the disparity, but that means little after 20 years of a policy that is primarily responsible for the prison population being 50% black. Today the incarceration rate for blacks is over 4500 per 100,000 and climbing. That is over 5 times higher than the peak incarceration rate during South African Apartheid.

During the forums held at Howard University, you and a number of other Democrats condemned mandatory minimums. Selecting the man who spearheaded that sentencing policy and believing that puts him on the right side of racial issues is disturbing.

I hope you will truly be the best advocate for blacks as you claim and maintain your opposition to this flawed policy.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Police raid Maryland mayor's home and kill his dogs

Berwyn Heights Mayor, Cheye Calvo, arrived home and found a package addressed to his wife on the porch. He brought the package inside. Within a very short time, the police burst through the door, killed the couples two black labs and grabbed the box. It contained 32 lbs of marijuana.

Police believe the Mayor and his wife were innocent victims of drug scheme involving two men, one of which is a FedEx driver. Apparently, the driver would drop of a box and his partner was to retrieve it.

AP story via Yahoo

Incidents like this are disconcerting, but maybe it needs to happen in order for the public at-large to see how destructive current drug policy is. The mayor has called for an investigation into the raid and the FBI has begun one. What he really needs to investigate is the root cause of police behavior like this. The drug war has made many police officers believe that they are above the law.