In a new video, America's favorite fake president "Jed" Bartlet (aka Martin Sheen) urges viewers to consider the overall harm of imposing mandatory minimum sentences, especially on first time and non-violent offenders.
In the beginning of the clip, photos of people incarcerated for non-violent offenses flash, showing both their crimes and sentences along with the amount of prison time they were given. The disparity in the examples is pretty shocking. "A basic principle of justice is that the punishment should fit the crime," Sheen says. "Mandatory minimum sentences undermine that principle. "
The video goes on to include interviews with opponents of mandatory minimums, all of which are pretty persuasive. The YouTube page for the video includes a call to action for supporters:
Call your senators NOW and ask them to vote for the Smarter Sentencing Act. Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard to find contact info for your senators:202-224-3121