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It is unfair
If you cant do the time, dont do the crime is an absolutely inane cliche that seems to be recited by so many self-righteous in their letters. Im sure no offender is standing and scratching his head contemplating whether he can do the time for that particular crime or not. Most crime is committed in the heat of the moment and/or while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Im sure that no one is intending on being caught either so the time has little relevance at that moment.
Washington is in the throes of major prison expansion. The number of incarcerated here has quadrupled in the past 20 years. This is due to mandatory minimum sentences, the 3-Strikes law, juveniles treated as adults and our futile war on drugs. Although the time should fit the crime and crime must be punished, we have many serving life sentences that really should not be. It is unfair and if that doesnt bother you, consider the unfair, unnecessary burden to the taxpayer.