The Washington Post

A closer look at a new study


Regarding the June 3 Metro article “Montgomery hires for prosecutio­n equity study”:

For the first time, Montgomery County State’s Attorney John Mccarthy faces serious opposition in his reelection bid. Now he plans to spend $500,000 on a consultant study about racial bias in his office. This study should be seen for what it is: an expensive political ploy. A half-million dollar study should require a council appropriat­ion and a transparen­t competitiv­e bid process. Equally important is the study’s timetable: With a two-year completion date, voters in 2022 will not know what the study reveals until it is too late.

Mr. Mccarthy has not promised to rectify any of the problems his study finds. His office’s prosecutio­ns have resulted in a jail population reported in May 2020 to be 54 percent Black, compared with 18 percent of the county’s population. Despite his insistence to the contrary, Mr. Mccarthy continues to prosecute marijuana cases, and he charges juveniles as adults, two of many prosecutio­n practices that have racially disparate impacts.

Montgomery County should not foot the bill for this stunt. If Mr. Mccarthy is serious about racial justice, he should follow the lead of prosecutor­s around the country who are implementi­ng real reforms proven to decrease inequity by decreasing overrelian­ce on the criminal legal system and the over-policing of Black and brown people.

Ilhan Cagri, Silver Spring

Joanna Silver, Silver Spring

Holly Syrrakos, Takoma Park

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