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Criminal Law

Punishment

Journal

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

2013

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What The Sentencing Commission Ought To Be Doing Reducing Mass Incarceration, Lynn Adelman Apr 2013

What The Sentencing Commission Ought To Be Doing Reducing Mass Incarceration, Lynn Adelman

Michigan Journal of Race and Law

Beginning in the 1970s, the United States embarked on a shift in its penal policies, tripling the percentage of convicted felons sentenced to confinement and doubling the length of their sentences. This shift included a dramatic increase in the prosecution and incarceration of drug offenders. As a result of its move toward long prison sentences, the United States now incarcerates so many people that it has become an outlier; this is not just among developed democracies, but among all nations, including highly punitive states such as Russia and South Africa, and also in comparison to the United States' own long-standing …