Category: war on drugs

Was Juan Williams sacrificed for our sins?

You have probably heard that Juan Williams has been sacked by National Public Radio.  I have mixed feelings. 

Like Bill Cosby, Juan Williams panders to white America (and a large portion of prosperous black America) by wailing on the black under-caste.  For instance, Williams recently penned a screed lamenting the sorry state of black America: “Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America–and What We Can Do About It”.

Williams is an authority on the civil rights movement and has been involved with some excellent work in this connection, most notably PBS’s “Eyes on the Prize” series.  But, like far too many civil rights aficionados, he is inordinately fond of comparing the courage, intelligence and resilience of the civil rights generation with the irresponsible, dependent and self-destructive tendencies on display in poor black neighborhoods.  (more…)

Legal nightmare ends for the Richardson family

Mark and Vergil Richardson

District Judge Robert Mohoney has dropped all criminal charges against Mark Richardson, Vergil Richardson, Jermichole Richardson and Xavier Richardson, bringing a three-year legal nightmare to an end. 

This ruling comes as no surprise.  Once Judge John McCraw Jr. forced the presiding judge, John Miller, to recuse himself, the outcome was virtually automatic.  Judge Mahoney was appointed to replace Miller and it didn’t take him long to make the only sensible call available to him.

The big surprise in this case is that charges were filed against these defendants in the first place.  No one has ever accused the Texas Attorney General’s office of being soft on drug crime, but when Nicole Habersang reviewed the facts she knew what she had to do.  That’s when things got really strange.   When Ms. habersang filed a motion requesting that charges against all but one defendant be dropped, Judge Miller refused to cooperate.  (more…)

Mark Osler: Four Hard Truths about the Drug War

The policies of the drug war failed, but ignoring the problem certainly won’t make it go away. Here are four steps we need to take:


October 11, 2010

Mark Osler

Though it is out of the spotlight in a bad economy, the United States still has a drug problem, and it may be getting worse. The use of methamphetamine, a particularly pernicious narcotic, is increasing again. Few things can harm a family or community like meth.

It shouldn’t be surprising that drug use is on the rise. The federal government, in particular, has turned its attention to something else: immigration. Just 14 years ago, about 40 percent of federal defendants who received a sentence were charged with drug crimes, while just 12 percent were up on immigration charges. For the 2009 fiscal year, 32 percent of federal defendants faced immigration charges, while only 30 percent were narcotics violators.

In highlighting this shift, I am not arguing that we go back to what we did at the height of the drug war. Those policies largely failed. If we choose to take drug interdiction seriously, we must try new approaches and take real-world facts into account, including four hard truths: (more…)