The overcrowding of prisons in California and the rest of America is the result of “manufactured crime”. These are crimes which have no victim yet are considered felonies and follow the three strike law. Many people do not know that there are more incarcerated people in America than any other country on earth. According to the American Civil Liberties Union “America contains 5% of the world 's human population while also containing 25% of the world’s prison population. Since 1970, our prison population has risen by some 700% - an increase far outpacing rates of population growth and crime1”. The reason America has so many incarcerated people is not because Americans commit more crimes or the police are just better at finding criminals,
The prison system in Texas is its own and unique beast. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice or TDCJ has many different units that house many different types of inmates. These units across Texas all sever different purposes to the state and the local communities in which the prisons are close to. There are however three things that make each prison unique from the other prisons, the inmates that they house, and the different industries ran by the each prison and the programs offered to offenders. I work at the H.H. Coffield Unit and I will take you on a tour of that prison and explain what it is that make Coffield unique.
To much of the common citizen’s disbelief, the spike in the mass incarceration of citizens in America is not necessarily a result of the national increase in violence, but rather an operation fueled by the corruption within our own legal system. Although many individuals in the United States would stand to believe that there is no particular way that anyone could stand to profit from the mass incarceration of Americans–they are wrong. The standing profiteers for mass incarceration is the private prison industry. The name to their game is simple, the more that the public good suffers from mass incarceration, the more government money the companies can obtain. As a result of these efforts, the private prison industry cuts corners at the expense of public safety and prison security in order to maximize profits by obtaining government money, resulting in the mass denial of American citizen’s liberty. Worsening the problem, as the increase in the incarceration of individuals continues, the sense of rehabilitation for inmates has been heavily reduced. This is not just by chance, but rather because the capitalistic private prison industry does not view incarcerated individuals as
Life after incarceration, here today gone tomorrow. 95% of adults sentenced to prison will return to our communities, and reentry will be their first step back into society. Imagine have a thousand questions flooding one’s mind all at once. Where will I live, how will I survive, and contribute to the family, while maintaining to the stipulations of one’s parole/ probation, without risking freedom. The number one goal for those newly released back into society by way of the reentry program is to never return to the inside of a prison cell. But reality tells of a different story. Eight out of ten ex-offender will return to prison within three years of being released, either on a minor violation or on new criminal charges. An ex-offender past limits their ability
Over the past 40 years U.S. incarceration has grown at an extraordinary rate, with the United States’ prison population increasing from 320,000 inmates in 1980 to nearly 2.3 million inmates in 2013. The growth in prison population is in part due to society’s shift toward tough on crime policies including determinate sentencing, truth-in-sentencing laws, and mandatory minimums. These tough on crime policies resulted in more individuals committing less serious crimes being sentenced to serve time and longer prison sentences.
Looking back to the prison history. Incarceration has not always been a common form of punishment. Back then people wanted to reform and change the way
state prisons. This number fell in recent years owing to the pressure from SCOTUS and
From healthcare to personal safety, inmates are suffering illnesses, abuse, excessive sentences, and maltreatment at an astronomical rate. There has been a vast debate on the issue. There are many arguments for lesser prison sentences and better prison conditions. Mass Incarceration on Trial, A Remarkable Court Decision and the Future of Prisons in America, written by Jonathan Simon, illustrates how our nation has become far removed from treating prisoners as human beings who deserving dignity and our nation has failed to properly address this grossly flawed prison system; particularly California.
Imagine if a person was a major drug dealer and drug money was their only stream of income. Once that person is caught by law enforcement and sentenced by the court, they spend some time in the correctional system. When they get out, the reality of the label “felon” sticks with them when they’re trying to apply for jobs. If they are unable to make a living for themselves the right way, they will be tempted to go back to their criminal lifestyle. Society makes it extremely hard for felons to reenter society and the felons shouldn’t be at fault because they have limited options. They are going to fall back into their criminal lifestyle because many employers are not susceptible to hiring felons.
According to Phelps (2013), as from 1998 to 2007 states that had the greatest increases in incarceration rates failed to observe a corresponding drop in crime rates. On the other hands, states such as New York, Texas, New Jersey and North and South Carolina that lowered their incarceration rates in favor of community corrections programs experienced a drop in crime rates (p.53). Incarceration has also failed in correcting prisoners. Most of the prisoners always go back to committing crimes once released from prison. It has led to a rise in the recidivism rates of prisoners. Recidivism refers to the repetition of criminal behavior (James, 2011). According to the United States Bureau of Justice 2010 statistics report, three-quarters of released prisoners are constantly rearrested for new crimes and more than half of these go back to prison in a period of two to three years after their release. Ex- inmates account for an approximated 19 percent of all arrests (Phelps, 2013, p.55). Criminals who return to the community are also most of the times worse off after a period of confinement than when they entered. It is attributable to the fact that these inmates learn antisocial and criminal attitudes from other
inmates do not deserve a second change to be with society again. Those I would consider to be the
After reading Picking Cotton by Ronald Cotton and Jennifer Thompson-Cannino in Professor Morton’s class last semester, I became interested in the concept of eyewitness misidentification and bad forensic science leading to wrongful convictions. After further research I chose to take up an internship with the New England Innocence Project for this Spring semester. Since the inception of the first Innocence Project in 1992, 337 people across the United States have been exonerated on the basis of new strides made in forensic science capabilities, this is only a fraction where there have been 1,744 total exonerations between the Innocence Project combined with other groups (University of Michigan). The statistics of why this happens are overwhelming:
In the United States criminals are not permitted to vote in any kind of elections. Once prisoners get incarcerated they lose their self-determination and some of their rights. Prisoners are citizens too and even though they may have committed a felony, they are still citizens of their country. Some people think prisoners should not have the right to vote, but there are many others that think they should. I think they should be allowed to vote because they still are citizens and still have some rights. In the United States, there is an estimated number of two million people in prison, those inmates do not get to cast a vote in any elections (Lecture notes 2017). Prisoners should be able to have a say so in who run their country they live in, but they don’t think and it’s not fair. Imagine two million people not being able to vote because of their rap sheet.
Prison is a very harsh and bad place that no one should want to be in. Little freedom can make a person really aggravated. Nobody wants to be away from their family with little contact allowed. Little space and little privacy can only go for so long. Personally I think prison doesn't reform people because there are many repeat offenders, some people act worse when they get there, and also some people just don't like help and never want to change.
The United States of America contains the third largest population in the world, which contradicts the fact that the United States has the largest prison population in the world (Aliprandini, and Finley). The fact that their prison population is so large alludes to the reason they would have a strong parole system. Due to contrary belief, this is not the case. Furthermore, the parole system is known to have a multitude of problems laced within it, these problems can be solved by focusing on parolee and parole officer relationships, and partaking in systems that improve the underlying issues. Following through to fix these affairs may seem unrealistic, but a solution could be in sight.