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Milestones: Law Without Order!

Image by Larry Sacks

There is no order without the enforcement of law.

Of course, if there is no law, order is absent.

The current lawlessness grabbing headlines in and around our country is a two-pronged, self-created quandary.


Killing, looting, burning and destruction is against our “laws.”

Protesting oppressive and excessive action of government is a right guaranteed by our Constitution.

When government becomes overbearing, in this case, unlawfully taking the life of a citizen like George Floyd, citizens can, will and should protest.

Using this extreme event as a catalyst to incite violence and destruction is not the intent of protest. The retaliation of some by looting, shooting, burning business and beating innocent bystanders defeat the very purpose of the protest.

To permit so much leniency as to create anarchy defeats the intent of law and in turn, creates a no law environment.

You and I have been compliant in getting to this place. Together, we have silently watched as elected representatives have led us to accept more lenient laws.

Remember, laws are intended to establish and create order. When these laws are enforced, order dominates.

Loosening laws lends to a more lenient application of law when violations of law are measured in dollar damage. This has been discussed in prior columns when we talked about Prop 47, which removed teeth from the law. Now vandalism, theft and robbery are only ticketed items if they involve less than $950 dollars.

In addition, detained and imprisoned former felons were released and put back on the street if their violation was less than $950.

What were we thinking?

Not only that, other states have done the same.

Now, you and I have created a major mass of mischievous and malicious malice makers moving freely to rob and pillage without “penalty.”

We watch the news and shake our heads in wonder as we watch the wares of the wicked ripping apart the fabric of America without repercussion.

This is not a political illness that is either Democratic or Republican.

This was your and my decision, along with other states that voted to liberalize the law. The result has been to create the absence of order.

Let’s confess that we did this. We broke the law of the Universe. We cannot have order, without enforcement of laws…with teeth.

Which prong of the fork takes precedence?


1 Comment
  1. Al Iriberri 4 years ago

    The United States incarcerates at a FAR higher rate than pretty much every other nation on Earth – as ~5% of the global population we claim ~25% of the total incarcerated population of the planet. Calls for even more jailing is foolhardy and wasteful – especially given that the cost to jail someone even briefly is far higher than the $950 figure cited. It’s a matter of economic and social reality that spending billions per year to jail non-violent offenders is a poor use of resources. Even worse, the privatization of some jail facilities creates an incentive to apply incarceration not as solely a legal decision but as a profitable one.

    As someone that has been a victim of petty property crime I’m not happy to see broken glass or an empty spot where my property was, of course. But instead of calls for more and more punitive measures, we should be looking as socially positive responses that encourage employment and education to make offenders useful members of society, not incarcerated burdens on it. What you deem as naive leniency could be viewed as acknowledgement that jail cannot be the sole answer to petty crime – because we can’t afford it economically or socially.

    Consider that perhaps both the concept of just ticketing minor offenses AND jailing everyone are logically flawed. We don’t need to be limited to either / or.

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