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Three strikes

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Posted: Thursday, April 12, 2012 9:46 pm | Updated: 1:48 pm, Wed Jan 16, 2013.

Letter to the editor

April 11, 2012

To the editor:

It has recently come to my attention that we sure give alcoholics a lot of leeway here in Alaska. Our three-strikes policy simply does not do enough.

After serving a sentence, hardened alcoholics return to the street to — guess what — get drunk again. After the third strike, an alcoholic who drives drunk and crashes into another vehicle, killing any number of people, is given anywhere between five years and life for jail time. What goes on in that time is a criminal eating up our tax dollars. Instead of being sentenced to death row, he’s relaxing as if he were on a vacation.

I’ve been to the local jail. I’ve seen the way people are treated there. Some of them are too crazy even for me. Instead of being given last rights and the electric chair within the week of the jury’s verdict, our hardened alcoholics are once again sucking up tax dollars.

As hard as the idea of capital punishment is on some people, there are plenty of examples found in such countries an Iraq, Afghanistan and even Japan. These countries as a result have some of the lowest crime rates in the entire world. We can all surely agree that lower crime rates would be beneficial to just about everyone. Many good things have been founded from following the examples of others. It’s our turn to step up and attempt to emulate stricter law enforcement.

The main problem is found in having jailed alcoholics sit in their cells all day doing nothing but getting up to eat during meal time. They are draining our resources. The government spends taxes on prison services year after year — can’t we agree that that money would be better used elsewhere? All in all, the policy regarding alcoholism that we have followed for years works out well for the drunks, but not for the people that are forced to support them. Therefore, we must act to change our law, for the common good of the people.

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