Locking Up Our Own - Epilogue Summary & Analysis

James Forman Jr.
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Summary

The Reach of Our Mercy, 2014 – 16. The author begins the epilogue with discussion of how, in 2014, city council in Washington D.C. voted to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana. Times, beliefs, and values had changed, he says, in the almost 40 years since an earlier attempt at decriminalization (described in Part 1, Chapter 1) had been defeated: the author suggests that politicians and the public had decided that marijuana was less a gateway to hard drugs and more a gateway to the troubled, over-stuffed criminal justice system. “Warrior and pretext policing,” he adds, “led to more arrests, technological changes made the arrests impossible to escape, and legal changes turned a single arrest into a lifetime of exclusion and subordination” (219).

The author then uses this example of the process of, and reasoning behind, changing laws to begin consideration of changes to mandatory sentencing laws – specifically, laws...

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This section contains 1,080 words
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