Working off that, Paul Butler of George Washington Law School wonders if the 89 players -- mostly White and Latino -- named in the Mitchell Report will face similar charges to the ones being pressed against Bonds. If not, Butler argues, prosecutors should drop the case against Barry.
There is a sense, both in the criminal justice system and in the social Zeitgeist, that drug use by African-Americans is somehow worse than drug use by others....To state the obvious, all drug offenders ought to be treated the same. Since we don’t have the resources to “level up” enforcement for white people to enforcement for African-Americans, we should “level down” enforcement for blacks. It seems unlikely that the 88 other baseball players accused of doping will be investigated and prosecuted like Bonds. Dropping the charges against Bonds would send the important message that when it comes to criminal justice, what is good enough for white people is good enough for African-Americans.
Butler has written much excellent scholarship on this and related topics. If you have the time (and the access), I highly recommend his article Starr is to Clinton as Regular Prosecutors are to Blacks, 40 Boston College Law Review 705-716 (1999).