White was convicted at trial of cocaine possession and was sentenced to mandatory life without parole as a third-strike offender for an offense that usually carries a sentence of zero to five years. He was 26 years old.
His mother, Eisibe Sneed, told the ACLU, “When they sentenced my child, they sentenced me too. I’m in Angola too—my heart is there.”
Because of our overly extreme sentencing laws, thousands of people will never spend another holiday season with their families. Instead, these people will be behind bars until they die for relatively minor crimes like shoplifting a jacket or selling a single crack rock. This is an injustice, but it’s not an injustice that’s set in stone. President Obama has the power to reduce these cruel and wasteful sentences.
This holiday season, ask President Obama to send more people like Rufus home. There are thousands still serving unnecessarily long, extreme sentences. It’s time they went home.