Monday, May 25

Yes on Proposition 36

The editorial board is composed of multiple Daily Bruin staff members and is dedicated to publishing informed opinions on issues relevant to students. The board serves as the official voice of the paper and is separate from the newsroom.

Past the partisan bickering and campaign half-truths of the 2012 election season, it is integral that students take the initiative to educate themselves about the issues at stake on the November ballot.

The Daily Bruin editorial board, which represents the voice of the entire newspaper, has researched the measures and candidates that students will be voting on, and endorsed the ones we think do the most to support the UCLA community. We encourage students to use our endorsements as a starting point for conducting their own research, forming their own educated opinions and casting an informed vote come Election Day.

See who the board endorsed:

The people

The education propositions

The rest of the propositions

Proposition 36 proposes moderate but needed changes to a currently flawed “three-strikes” sentencing law. In essence, it makes the punishment fit the crime for petty criminals.

Not all felonies are equal, and therefore should not be met with the same automatic sentencing. This proposition would make it so that people convicted of a third-strike felony will receive a life sentence only if one of their three strikes was because of a violent crime.

It is also estimated to save the state $70 to $90 million of its annual prison budget after its initial cost and would alleviate the state’s problem of overcrowded prisons.

Opponents of this measure worry that it could release dangerous criminals that are likely to re-offend. But the measure maintains life sentences for felons if they were previously convicted for rape, murder or child molestation.

Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley, who is known for being tough on crime, is a backer of Proposition 36.

This board agrees that Proposition 36 is a necessary change to have an effective justice system that reserves harsh penalties for the most dangerous criminals.

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