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Sunday, February 3, 2013

Wisconsin Republican State Rep: Alternative sentencing for non-violent offenders makes much more sense

"Some [Republican legislators] very libertarian-minded individuals"

Excerpted, interview with WI State Rep. Scott Krug, Cap Times, Madison.com, "Republican lawmaker: Why do we lock up so many people?":
[Who should be sent to prison?] Violent criminals. If you have a propensity for violence, I don't know if we'll be able to rehabilitate you. There's just some things we can't fix. But when we're talking about nonviolent offenders — drug issues, financial issues — those aren't the people we need to be warehousing.

the biggest effect I can have is with people with alcohol and other drug abuse issues. We have really effective treatment programs. If you have those issues, we can get you treatment for a better bang for our buck and make you a better citizen, because we know how to deal with those issues. If we don't know how to treat (violent criminals) right now, the best I can do is treat the people I know we can affect. I ran a drug court in Wood County for four years. I know we can make a difference for those individuals.

I ran the discharge planner program in Wood County ... making sure people who were being released didn't come back in, so if they had a problem they could call me and I'd make some referrals — tell them “Hey, go talk to this person, go do this — whatever I can do to help you not come back (to jail)." We took recidivism down from 81 percent to 18 percent in two years. All it took was for a local jail to fund one position.
Continuing:
[How many Republican colleagues agree with you?] Some are very libertarian-minded individuals who get my viewpoint. Some are very fiscally conservative individuals who understand that viewpoint. The end game is the same for a lot of different people but it's about figuring out how to get to that end game with them. They want to take different routes to get there. A lot of Democrats have the same views as mine but they want to do a lot of different things along the way to get there.

1 comment:

Doom said...

No. Treatment programs are a fucking joke for people required to attend. As is, they can't keep the heavy drunks off the road, and seem not to try. Repeat offenders, at times, make huge headlines.

And financial crimes, when they are big and affect people directly, really have to involve prison. Stealing grandma's life savings, uncles college funds for his kids, these people need to go down, hard. Further, I'm not sure anyone should walk on actual crimes. It sends a hugely wrong message, though I would offer the option of public flogging in lieu of prison for minor offense (comes with scars, by the way, not the light stuff).

What needs to happen is that those who you consider too violent to be allowed to be free need to be executed so that there is room for these "minor criminals". If I had my way there would be no gang problems two weeks from today. Period. And don't even begin telling me what we could or couldn't do. We most certainly could, and should have, done something long ago. The reason it wasn't done is that far too much illegal money comes into politics that way.