Sunday, February 25, 2007

Liberal or Conservative?

Tell me who said this:

"We must be tough on crime, but also tough on the causes of crime, and it's clear that government can't do the job alone. . . . [Our state's] prisons should be preparing inmates to function in society when they are released. Prison shouldn't be a place where inmates are just warehoused, where they lift weights and mark time and commit more crimes once released." [No link available--trust me.]

You won't get it. It's from the new speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives, a young Republican, a very proud conservative (very proud and very conservative).

Which is the point. Like several issues in the news right now, corrections sentencing policy isn't really liberal v. conservative anymore. It's realist v. denier. Broad public sense v. narrow professional (or advocacy) self-interest. There's a solid middle ground to be defined between realist conservatives and realist liberals on our critical needs. It's time to turn off the mikes of the deniers and get on with our business.

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