In the wake of the Justice Department’s findings regarding the Ferguson, Missouri, police, it has become even clearer that criminal justice reforms are needed, both to address inequality and to achieve greater efficacy. No policy is a panacea, but one frequently discussed reform would do away with federal mandatory minimum sentences for certain low-level drug offenses. Such a move would grant more leeway to judges, and also help curtail prison overpopulation (My dad was a state correctional officer; this is a serious and dangerous problem.)
The good news is that a wave of young conservative leaders has been pushing for a variety of reforms to address problems that, in many cases, disproportionately affect the African-American community.
The bad news it that these conservatives have a formidable adversary: Their elders.