EGP Nov. 2012 Ballot Recommendation

By EGP Editorial

Yes on Proposition 36—Three Strikes Law for Repeat Felony Offenders, Penalties

We believe that when voters passed the three strikes law they intended to keep repeat offenders of serious felonies in jail for life.

Unfortunately, the three strikes law has had some unintended consequences. Many of those sentenced under the Three Strikes Law and now in jail for life did not commit a serious or violent crime that would merit this substantial penalty.

But by sentencing them under Three Strikes, not only has the spirit of the law been violated, we have also added to the strain on our courts, over-crowding in our jails and prisons, all the while costing the public millions of more dollars.

Prop 36 will not allow for the re-sentencing of those convicted of selling, furnishing, giving or administering any methamphetamine or related drug if charged with a minor offense.

But murderers, rapists and child molesters will serve life sentences even if the new offense is a minor offense.

These are among the crimes the public intended to stop with three strikes.

As for the possibility of crime going up in California, states that do not have three strikes laws have not seen crime rise, in fact in New York, which does not have a three strikes law, crime has declined at higher rate than in California.

These facts along with the savings of hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue get our endorsement of Prop. 36.

Yes on Proposition 35—Anti-Human Trafficking Initiative.

The fact that children and teens are prey for those who use human beings for sexual crimes, ruining their lives by subjecting them to inhumane treatment, degrading their existence and our society, is reason enough for us to issue a forceful Yes on measure 35.

But just as important as the penalty enhancements that will be added to the sentencing of anyone convicted of trafficking in child sexual abuse, is the cultural shift in our understanding of human trafficking that will be brought  about by the relabeling and stigmatizing of those found guilty of these crimes. A 12-14 year-old girl or boy caught up in a prostitution sting will no longer be seen as criminal, instead they will treated as victims and provided with wrap around services to help them try and get their life back together. Pimps, who these days are more likely to ply their trade on the Internet then on a street corner, will be forced to register as sex offenders if convicted of forcing a juvenile to have sex. They will also be required to turn over email addresses to authorities for monitoring.

Human trafficking is not just a criminal bringing in child sex slaves from other countries, on the contrary, most of the children who fall into this category were born right here in the U.S. And a large number of them have been in our foster care system.

As far as we are concerned these punishments are justified, so let’s not quibble with inane arguments against Prop. 35. Vote Yes.

Yes on Prop 37 – Genetically Engineered Food Labeling, Initiative.

This newspaper has always stressed and fought for the public’s right to know, and as a result strongly endorses Californian’s right to know what’s in their food, and how its been processed and to know whether its been genetically altered and how.

The argument that it will cost the consumer hundreds of millions of dollars just does not make sense. The public should not have to guess whether their food is free from disease, carcinogenic substances and contamination or is adulterated, so why should genetic alteration be omitted from this list. Yes on Prop 37.


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October 11, 2012  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

Comments

2 Responses to “EGP Nov. 2012 Ballot Recommendation”

  1. Emily on October 18th, 2012 12:32 pm

    Each night in CA, children are forced to sell their bodies and are sexually exploited. This is a reality in our state that we should all be fighting to end- which is why Proposition 35 is a no-brainer! It will increase the penalties against human traffickers and help direct the fines against human traffickers to pay for victim services. It is supported by both parties as well as law enforcement. Why wouldn’t you vote yes on 35- I know I will! Vote yes on 35!

  2. Hope on October 22nd, 2012 1:03 pm

    Fueled by the Internet, human trafficking of children is flourishing in California because the profits are huge and the laws are weak, allowing traffickers to rake in big bucks while operating with near impunity. Gangs are now getting into trafficking because it is less risky and more profitable for them to sell children than to sell drugs. Prop 35 is endorsed by law enforcement organizations, prosecutors, elected officials and child advocates throughout California because it is a comprehensive law that provides the strong penalties, fines and prosecutorial tools required to put the traffickers away for a long time and take away their huge profits. Many traffickers who should be in prison have walked because of the numerous loopholes in the current law. Prop 35 closes those loopholes. In addition to protecting victims by getting the traffickers in prison and off the streets, Prop 35 recognizes the children as the victims. It protects them in the courtroom where, under the current law, they are treated as criminals because their past behavior can be used against them when they try to testify against their abusers. Fines that are collected will go to the many services victims need to recover from their trauma and get their lives on track. Prop 35 also requires convicted sex traffickers to register as sex offenders and all registered sex offenders to disclose their Internet accounts. We need to protect our children from traffickers who cruise Internet the same as traffickers who cruise the streets. According to Sharmin Bock, a prosecutor and co-author of Prop 35: “If this initiative is passed, we will have the toughest and best human trafficking law in the country, and California will be the last place on the planet that a trafficker would want to do business.” To learn more go to http://www.YesonProp35.com or \http://www.caseact.org/news/vote-yes-on-prop-35-to-stop-human-trafficking-in-california/.

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