The politics of race is not usual Ranger country, but of course it interweaves and girds the entire Iraq project, on both sides. A Philadelphia Enquirer story looking at the old question of incarceration rates not commensurate with demographics caught our attention, especially in light of Scooter Libby's recent executive dispensation.
Ranger Question of the Day: If Atlanta Falcon quarterback Michael Vick is found guilty of animal abuse, will he go to jail?
"According to Human Rights Watch, two out of every five black persons sent to state prisons nationally in 2000 were convicted of drug crimes. Although blacks constitute no more than 15 percent of all drug users, 63 percent of drug offenders sent to state prisons were black.The solution in our increasingly militarized society is more prisons, though it is questionable what benefit to society is served by locking up small time drug offenders.
"Why that discrepancy? Studies show the majority of drug offenders sent to prison in the last decade were convicted of low-level drug possession or sales. Where do most of those arrests occur? In low-income neighborhoods populated largely by African Americans.
"Why? Because it's much easier to make a bust in poor neighborhoods where drugs are sold in open markets than in suburban neighborhoods where drug abuse is largely hidden (Stuffing Prisons With Black Men)."
Of course, these facts would not trouble GWB, since he is supposedly no longer a substance abuser, and certainly not underprivileged. The catechism is, them that has, gets. The corollary: If you get busted, you deserved it. Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.
Tell that to Scooter, who has scooted. Orange just wasn't his color.
But it's all right, since he's white, and like Cheney during Vietnam, has better things to do, after all.