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[–] kantskittens 0 points 3 points (+3|-0) ago 

A couple of things before we get our panties in a bunch:

a graphic showing forfeiture funds 01-14

Where it's from:

Like many of the more controversial aspects of the present-day criminal justice system, civil asset forfeiture's roots lie in the war on drugs. In the 1980s, law enforcement officers said they needed a tool to help capture cartel leaders and large-scale drug traffickers, who are difficult to pin criminal cases on. So Congress amended the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act to create the Department of Justice's Asset Forfeiture Fund.

30 years down the line, who's affected:

evidence suggests that forfeiture proceedings are often initiated against small time criminals or people who aren't criminals at all. An American Civil Liberties Union report earlier this year found that the median amount seized in forfeiture actions in Philadelphia amounted to $192. These forfeiture actions were concentrated in the city's poorest neighborhoods, the report found.

The glaring question that needs answering is the why's and how's in the minds of the police officers actually doing it.

And if the answer is “kind of like pennies from heaven. It gets you a toy or something that you need is the way that we typically look at it to be perfectly honest”, what does this say about their funding in the first place - you know, the raison d'être of taxes


[–] Avnomke 0 points 2 points (+2|-0) ago 

Reading that, it sounds like something to get our panties in a bunch about.


[–] kantskittens 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

I sometimes get ahead of myself :P

But yes, you're absolutely right. This really does deserve outrage
However: we really need to be outraged for the right reasons.

This is the result of a near 50-year old policy put in place by conservative administrations (ratified by Nixon, later amended by Reagan, as specified by the WP article), to combat a very real problem they themselves not only defined and treated as criminal, but might also have been not only a part of, but also fueling.

They should not be allowed to first create the problem, then later say "we told you so" like they have with the war on drugs, or similarly like they have with national debt: Lower taxes to constrain gvmnt spending, take loans to balance the budget, complain about the newly created debt.

This is not an example of "big government gone too far", this is another example of a certain party whose policies too often only work in a fantasy world.

Either the nations police departments receives funding from fair and sound taxes, or they get their funds from "other sources", eg forfeitures, private donations or subscription plans.
One works and is fair, the other is a crate of TNT on fire.


[–] cyks 0 points 2 points (+2|-0) ago 

So many useless words to persuade us to not "get our panties in a bunch." You should work for the MSM.


[–] Frankensauce 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

The pennies from heaven quote was an official statement by a police chief describing what the funds were used for.


[–] crankypants15 0 points 0 points (+0|-0) ago 


The Institute of Justice can't spell. Does anyone else find that funny?


[–] kantskittens 0 points 0 points (+0|-0) ago 

It's the Washington Post that can't spell, but nice catch none the less :)