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Rebuttal to Argument in Favor of Proposition 205

Arguments on this page are the opinions of the authors and have not been checked for accuracy by any official agency.


Don't be deceived by the proponents' hysterical rhetoric. Of course we all want to keep criminals off the street. Proposition 205 won't do it.

''Three strikes" is designed to lock up career criminals. Only convicted felons qualify. Felons are housed in state prisons, not in county jails. They are only in county jail if they can't make bail while awaiting trial.

Who serves time in county jails? Petty thieves and muggers, drunk drivers, deadbeat dads, small-time drug dealers, prostitutes, barroom brawlers, people whose traffic tickets go to warrant, etc. Some are dangerous, some aren't. In fact, 50% of all crime is related to drug use, including simple possession of controlled substances.

We believe that only criminals who are violent and dangerous to others should be locked up. To save taxpayers money, nonviolent convicts should be placed under house arrest and monitored electronically. Those guilty of violating peoples' rights should have to pay those they have wronged (restitution). Paying restitution is far more important than jailing a criminal, because a debt is owed first to the victim, then to ''society."

If there was no victim (such as in drug possession), then no crime was committed, and the person should be released. Law enforcement should concentrate on arresting truly dangerous thugs, like murderers, rapists and armed robbers. If only these types of criminals were locked up, we wouldn't need more jail cells.

Proposition 205 doesn't do much for public safety. It means more bond debt that taxpayers can't afford. Please vote NO.

JON PETERSEN
Treasurer, Libertarian Party of California

RONALD PAYNE
National Guard Military Policeman, Madera

TED BROWN
Insurance Adjuster/Investigator, Pasadena


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