"What do we think we know – that the rest of the nation doesn’t?"

Max Williams, a former Oregon legislator from back in the day when the state capitol wasn't completely off its rocker, and a former state prison director, testified today in Salem on the pressing need to recriminalize hard street drugs in Oregon. I must say, his words are the most common-sense assessment of the situation I've read in a long time.

Early intercepts into treatment and recovery (offering diversion and expungement) at the misdemeanor level will help save lives and will keep some drug-addicted individuals from incurring more severe criminal penalties. We don’t send people to prison for drug possession in Oregon – and we haven’t in the last four decades. But there are large percentages of people in prison (and I speak from some experience on this subject) who are in prison because of their addiction and the crimes they committed to pay for drugs – either a felony property crime or a felony person crime. These are much more serious offenses, and they will have life-long consequences because of it. So frankly, the more humane and progressive approach is to provide the criminal justice system with the necessary tools to play an early intervention role that will have the highest likelihood of diverting someone away from using drugs that may kill them, cause long-term health consequences, or long-term criminal justice consequences.

It remains to be seen whether the current bobbleheads like Kate Lieber will get Williams's message, but it's well worth your reading. It's here.


  1. The financiers of political junkets to Portugal have got their Spidey-sense a-tinglin'... Where to next? Amsterdam?

  2. This man is way too burdened with common sense to have any influence.

    1. In the wok world, common sense is irrational

  3. I suspect the huge population of druggies Oregon has attracted won't take kindly to being denied their pleasures.

  4. We're completely FFF'd. Restorative Justice Inc. has got deep pockets behind it. They want a destroyed inner city- probably so Blackrock can buy up all the properties for pennies on the dollar.


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