When it comes to crime policy, we have a choice - we can reduce crime or we can play politics. For far too long, government officials have chosen to play politics by enacting so-called "tough on crime" slogans such as "three strikes and you're out" or "you do the adult crime, you do the adult time." As appealing as these policies may sound, their impacts range from a negligible reduction in crime to an increase in crime. Over the past 40 years, federal criminal laws and policies have led to a dramatic increase in the number of people prosecuted and incarcerated federally, the length of their sentences, and the financial and human costs that they--and we as a society--face upon their the conclusion of their sentence. Congress frequently criminalizes crimes after notorious incidents that have received extensive media attention. This type of 'feel-good' legislation often causes the public to feel that 'something is being done' and creates the illusion of greater crime control despite the fact that] the chances of the legislation working to reduce crime are exceedingly low, and in some cases the chances of it doing harm are very high.