Cameron Douglas' incarceration until 2018 on drug charges has lit a fire under his powerful pop.
"I have an issue with the court and prison system, about how we treat nonviolent drug addicts," says Michael Douglas. "His punishment is too harsh. I want to get involved in working out reforms. I know a lot about it now. Cameron got the most severe sentence in the history of the U.S. penal system. It's just unrealistic. My son deserved to get arrested, but not to be harshly punished for obtaining drugs in prison."
Cameron Douglas was convicted of intent to distribute a half pound of methamphetamine in 2009 and subsequently sentenced to five years in a Pennsylvania federal prison. Then a judge slapped him with an an additional four years after he was caught with drugs in jail in 2011. Douglas lost his appeal.
"I cried," says Douglas' distraught dad. "It's the last time I cried. I don't know how else to say this other than it broke my heart. You have a vision of someone you love and care about and it feels unfair and you are helpless. It's been my trial. My tragedy. We've struggled together since he was 13."
Update: In his Emmy acceptance speech for Best Actor in a TV Movie or Miniseries (for his portrayal of Liberace in HBO's Behind the Candelabra) on Sept. 22, Douglas referred to Cameron when he said he's hoping "they'll allow me to see him soon." Backstage, Douglas added: "He’s spent almost two years in solitary confinement. Right now I’ve been told that I can’t see him for two years. It’s been over a year now. And I’m questioning the system... I’ve reached a point now where I’m very disappointed with the system. And as you can see from what Attorney General Eric Holder has been doing regarding our prison system, I think things are going to be revived, regarding nonviolent drug addicts. My last comment on that is the United States represents 5% of the world’s population and we have 25% of the world’s prisoners.”
The elder Douglas, who's suffering from throat cancer, created a media storm earlier this year when he said the reason for his affliction was oral sex. "Without getting too specific, this particular cancer is caused by something called HPV, which actually comes about from cunnilingus," he explained. "I did worry if the stress caused by my son's incarceration didn't help trigger it. But yeah, it's a sexually transmitted disease that causes cancer."
Cameron Douglas is the only son of Michael Douglas and his first wife, Diandra (Douglas is now married to Catherine Zeta-Jones). The 35-year-old convict appeared in the Douglas dramedy, It Runs in the Family, in 2003. He played a DJ in the 2002 stoner flick, Potluck.