Prison Overcrowding Research Paper

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The U.S. holds 5% of the world’s population, research has shown that the U.S. also holds more than 20% of the world’s prison population, that makes us the world’s largest jailer. This issue has been increasing since the beginning, the American legal system has changed over the last 40 years, in the 1970’s lawmakers declared a nation-wide war on drugs. President Richard Nixon set harsh policies towards drug-related crime and in New York governor Nelson Rockefeller declared “For drug pushing, life sentence, no parole, no probation.” His policies promised 15 years to life in prison for drug users and dealers. Since 1980, the number of incarcerated citizens in the US has more than quadrupled. Today, more than one out of every 100 Americans is behind bars, and the US has the largest prison population in the world. Prison overcrowding not only affects the economy but it causes issues within the prison as well. According to Angela Davis, “Prison overcrowding leads to several issues such as racial tensions, filth, or stress… which is an obstacle to rehabilitation work, therefore more inmates will come back into prison shortly after their release”.…show more content…
Prison overcrowding causes destruction within prison walls, with tensions rising and separation within inmates prisons do not seem to be fulfilling their purpose of finding inmates the right help. The U.S also has an issue of spending more money on the incarceration of citizens than the education of their citizens. $70 billion a year is a lot more than this country needs to be spending on corrections, with the grand amount of money issues this country faces there are plenty of other debts to pay. It is time to reconstruct the prison system and find a better solution to this country’s never ending problem. Mass incarceration is hurting the U.S and if we do not fix the issues on the past they will continue to ruin
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