- - Sunday, December 16, 2018

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

While I agree with Sen. Tom Cotton that there is a risk associated with releasing potentially dangerous criminals early, we must remember the scope of the problem that the United States faces: A prison system that right now has a population double that of Rhode Island (“How the Senate First Step Act is flawed,” Web. Nov. 29). The relapses Mr. Cotton fears are the very reason for this bill. These are relapses that are more common in this country than in any other. Three out of every four convicts are arrested less than five years after their release. Why is a 25-percent rate of rehabilitation acceptable? The focus should not be on the dangers posed by releasing convicts earlier, but on how to properly rehabilitate convicts to prevent this pervasive recidivism. The Senate First Step Act is the beginning of what is hopefully an extensive process of correctional reform. Congress would be ill-advised to kill a bill that the United States badly needs.

CARLOS PEREZ

Falls Church

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