The most recent law to come about has been the “3 strikes and you’re out” law. It sounds so socially acceptable why wouldn’t we want to have it? If a person commits two misdemeanors they serve them as such. However, should they commit a third it would be classified as a felony and they would no longer serve their time at the county jail, rather the state penitentiary. You hear this and say, “hey that’s great…tougher laws,” but when you strip away the figurative English and break it down you might change your mind.
Let’s start off by using a minor misdemeanor such as petty theft for example. Petty theft means that a person stole something valued less than $400. So let’s say our little criminal here steals a can of soda. He gets arrested, spends a month at Theo Lacy, gets six months probation, and is released out on the streets again. Six months go by and this time he gets hungry not thirsty and he steals a candy bar. After a year in jail, 2 years probation, and a healthy fine, he is released yet again onto the same streets. Right now you’re thinking “stupid kid, stealing a soda and candy bar he deserves what he gets,” but then our little buddy goes out and snatches a purse from some poor old lady. Well that’s the big 3!
Under this new law, this crime would be tried as a misdemeanor but would have s felonious sentence. Our buddy gets sent to 7 years at the state penitentiary. While lodging at one of our nations finest resorts, our sticky handed friend meets Bruno. After a painful greet and hello the two become close personal friends. Bruno has this enemy. Another criminal who’s feelings got hurt when Bruno made a new friend. His name is Moose. Moose begins to beat up our poor little crook something fierce. The guards do nothing about it because, after all, they are a bunch of criminals. Bruno and our severely bruised brother, having no other way of stopping Moose’s jealous attacks, kill him. Both spend a few months in solitary, get out, but realize that Moose had friends they didn’t know about. Thus the dynamic duo are killed and our story ends. What does this mean you ask? What it means is that the criminals in the state facilities make up their own breed of justice. Subjecting a small time crook to that style of survival is not only unfair it’s unjust. There was no reason to subject our petty thief to a slew of big time offenders.