Martha Stewart Weighs in On Booker Decision
Martha Stewart indeed is becoming a prisoner's rights advocate. Welcome, Martha.
Following the Supreme Court's decision in Booker last week, Martha sent an e-mail to Wall St. Journal reporter Laurie Cohen. (subscription only.) The gist: Martha thinks the decision will result in many inmates becoming severely depressed. So many had high hopes for Booker...thinking if the guidelines were thrown out, they would get shorter sentences. Particularly in federal camps like Alderson, where Martha is, most of the prisoners are first time, non-violent offenders. Some are serving long sentences, due to the guidelines.
Ms. Stewart said many of Alderson's inmates are there for long periods of time, many "unfairly or unwisely because of the guidelines, enhancements and conspiracies."
..."As you can imagine," Ms. Stewart wrote in her e-mail, "when one gets to talk to these women, most first offenders, and many perfectly nice 'neighbors next door,' it is mind boggling to understand that they have four, six and fifteen years to serve away from family, friends, jobs and homes. It is indeed pitiable.
The article ends with a quote about Martha by the infamous Jean Harris, the New York private school teacher who killed her lover, Herman Tarnower in 1980. Taronower was the author of the Scarsdale diet.
"Martha Stewart couldn't walk into a garden without doing a little weeding," Ms. Harris said in a recent interview. "And there's a lot of weeding to do in those prisons."
For today's real Booker update, head on over to Sentencing Law and Policy , where Law Prof. Doug Berman continues to post every new detail and reaction. He re-evaluates Judge Cassell's decision in Wilson on how to apply Booker here.
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