‘This is a culture war’ When it comes to punishment, racial disparities are pervasive

Comparing the sentences received by two drug offenders, one white and one black, Herald Tribune reporters Josh Salman, Dak Le, and Michael Braga illustrate the racial inequities in the Florida legal system through policies like drug-free zones and mandatory minimum sentencing. They quote Melba Pearson, deputy director of ACLU of Florida and a former prosecutor, saying, “Somebody of privilege deserves a second chance because they can change and become a potential leader someday. But then you look at someone of color, and because of what side of town they are on, they don’t have any potential and are seen as destined for dealing drugs. That’s where you see disparities — people not valuing lives the same way.” To read the full report, click here.

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