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Interesting drug law stuff

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
My step-mother is a lawyer and has done some criminal defense work. We were talking about lawyer-ing and the criminal justice system over the weekend, and she mentioned something about one of the drug cases she worked on. Crack cocaine carries a harsher sentence than powder coke. To me, that doesn't make a lot of sense. Isn't powder supposedly more pure and more expensive than crack? If so, you'd think that the expensive, pure version of the drug would be the one that got the harshest sentence.

Apparently, most of the suspects busted with crack are African-American, while most of the ones busted with powder are white.
Also, crystal meth sentences aren't as harsh as one would think. Most meth busts are on whites.
I find that to be an interesting "coincidence"....

Drug laws are so messed up in this country.
post #2 of 7
The ones busted with powder coke are probably not only mostly white, but also not dirt poor. So they can afford better lawyers, and have more pull with the legislators. It's still more of a rich kid's drug...
post #3 of 7
Yeah there is a town about 20 miles from where i live...and powder coke is like a rite of passage there...its awful....

The town is incredibly rich.....its funny too because the kids their are always on coke and are carrying coke, and that doesnt seem to be a problem....

But if you are not a "townie" and its after dark you better believe the cops will pull you over to ask why you are there.....

John, me, my friend jim and my parents for crips sakes have been pulled over at one time or another

But the coke isnt a problem....
post #4 of 7
I wrote about this very thing in a paper in college. I want to say it's a misdemeanor to possess a certain amount of cocain, but it's a major felony (punishable by up to 15 years in prison I think) to possess an even SMALLER amount of crack.

Think about it: Who are these laws written by? White, rich politicians. Who do these laws help? White, rich politicians and their kids. It's no secret that this is a gross injustice.
post #5 of 7
hummm .... has anyone read the book...the perpertual prisoner machineby Joel dyer??

It is a very enlightening look at Americas supposed justice...
post #6 of 7
One reason for crack to have a heavier sentence is because of its history. It was it ease of production and its cheapness that allowed its spread in the 1980s to great social impact in many inner cities. Therefore examining drug laws from its impact may provide answers as to its punishment.
post #7 of 7
Drug laws are a patchwork of many different laws. Each time a new drug came out, a new law had to be enacted for that drug. So there's no sense to them. They could use a complete overhaul rationalizing and standardizing penalties.
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