Serena Santiago Period:3 Mrs. Morales "I’m beginning to believe that `U.S.A. ' stands for the UNDERPRIVILEGED SLAVES OF AMERICA." (Esposito and Wood, 1982: 149), this statement was written by a prisoner.in Mississippi, in a letter which depicts the details of the daily violence he witnessed behind prison walls. This statement resonates with the recurring narratives of imprisonment, which all use slavery to accurately describe their experience during their sentence. The treatment and conditions of prisoners are brutal and unconstitutional, this is due to the faults in the 13th Amendment, which entitles “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist …show more content…
Since elaborating on the issues with the criminal justice system and the 13th Amendment, now an inside look on the conditions will show the true similarity between slavery and incarceration. Due to the leasing of prisoners, prisons and jails have become extremely industrialized. Many programs focusing on manufacturing and construction, but not many prisons offer educational programs for the prisoners to be able to learn how to support themselves once they get on parole and finish their sentence. Many convicts will finish their sentence and leave prison to join society-which has a stigma against convicts- yet they have no knowledge on how to create a resume, apply for jobs, or apply for food stamps. So many finish finally having to be able to leave the walls, to be welcomed to another stigma, less chance of being employed, little to no money, no experience in a job field, and little to none education-at minimum a high school degree. Not to mention how this could lead to the use of drugs to relieve stress, or another petty crime, like robbery, to occur due to having little to no prospects in receiving an …show more content…
Addressing this issue causes a huge debate due to stigmas. Many believe that any convicted criminal should be set away from society. This is due to the stigma that anyone convicted is a “delinquent” or is “crooked, evil, or a possible murderer.” But, it is quite naive to believe that prisons should be set separate from society. It is crucial that services are provided inside those walls to aid the inmates whom-with a few exceptions- will be released and it is our job and in our interest to ensure that they will not return to crime and be locked up yet again. Assisting them would be to not lock up people for pretty silly crimes, to relieve the problem of overcrowding, to not believe that a person of a darker skin tone is more likely to commit a violent crime, to as a whole support non violent offenders to turn around their life during their sentence and be released ready to start over and be welcomed back with open arms instead of silenced whispers and icy stares, to rid these prisons of industrialization and profit and encourage rehabilitation, rejuvenation, and
Convicts that were leased to plantations experienced much of the same conditions they were subjected to during enslavement. “The prisoners ate and slept on the bare ground, without blankets or mattresses, and often without clothes.” They were forced to live in their own filth, bloodied floors and vermin infested quarters. Punishments were usually carried out with lashings, however, they were subjected to “natural punishments” such as exhaustion, pneumonia, heatstroke, dysentery, malaria and frostbite. Convicts were more vulnerable than free workers, and paid a greater price.
III. Prison system affects poverty ● America 's prison system is increasing the poverty in The United states. According to “Out of prison and out of work: Jobs out of reach for former inmates” an article by published by CNN, written by Tanzina Vega the united states has 5 percent of the world 's population but 25 percent of its prison population. A large part of this is due to unemployment. As can be seen in an article published by VICE named “Why Is Getting a Job After Prison Still Such a Nightmare for Ex-Cons?”.
Prison reform has been an ongoing topic in the history of America, and has gone through many changes in America's past. Mixed feelings have been persevered on the status of implementing these prison reform programs, with little getting done, and whether it is the right thing to do to help those who have committed a crime. Many criminal justice experts have viewed imprisonment as a way to improve oneself and maintain that people in prison come out changed for the better (encyclopedia.com, 2007). In the colonial days, American prisons were utilized to brutally punish individuals, creating a gruesome experience for the prisoners in an attempt to make them rectify their behavior and fear a return to prison (encyclopedia.com, 2007). This practice may have worked 200 years ago, but as the world has grown more complex, time has proven that fear alone does not prevent recidivism.
As learned from Ta Nehisi, in the 1970s African Americans started to fill cells more than their counter parts, simultaneously he tells us “rehabilitation was largely abandoned in favor of retribution- the idea that prison should not reform convicts but punish
Those who find themselves sentenced to time in a penitentiary, jail, or prison are at risk of either being broken or strengthened by the time they spend behind bars. There is a great debate of whether or not the prison system in the United States is positive or negative. The following will briefly highlight the positives, negatives, and possible alternatives for our nation's prison system. First, there is a long list of negatives that the prison system in America brings. The prison system is filled with crime, hate, and negativity almost as much as the free world is.
The United States has a larger percent of its population incarcerated than any other country. America is responsible for a quarter of the world’s inmates, and its incarceration rate is growing exponentially. The expense generated by these overcrowded prisons cost the country a substantial amount of money every year. While people are incarcerated for several reasons, the country’s prisons are focused on punishment rather than reform, and the result is a misguided system that fails to rehabilitate criminals or discourage crime. This literature review will discuss the ineffectiveness of the United States’ criminal justice system and how mass incarceration of non-violent offenders, racial profiling, and a high rate of recidivism has become a problem.
When the American prison system began, it was believed that rehabilitation, the act of restoring one’s character, could be beneficial for criminals to start over. According to Tom Wicker, “The system…began as a reform impulse, the idea that if offenders were isolated, shielded from the public mockery that had accompanied hangings and the stocks, given time to repent, and worked hard, they could be turned away from crime and transformed into useful citizens” (xii). Criminals could become better citizens and have a positive outlook for a future if they worked hard and were secluded from the outside world. Although this idea seems more humane, it did not last long in the prison system because many people believed that any crime committed deserved
Over the decades, mass incarceration has become an important topic that people want to discuss due to the increasing number of mass incarceration. However, most of the people who are incarceration are people of color. This eventually leads to scholars concluding that there is a relationship between mass incarceration and the legacy of slavery. The reason is that people of color are the individuals who are overrepresented in prison compared to whites. If you think about it, slavery is over and African Americans are no longer mistreated; however, that is not the case as African Americans continue to face oppression from the government and police force.
First you hate them, then you get used to them. Enough time passes, you get so you depend on them. That 's institutionalized.’ A prison should aim at retribution, incapacitation, deterrence and rehabilitation. I am very well convinced that prison has served its first three purposes by depriving offenders’ freedom, but the
Thesis: It is very important for the sake of Americans tax dollars that we change the way that prisons are run and increase the productivity of inmates so when they are released from jail they are ready to be a productive member in society and have the confidence to achieve new goals. Introduction: Day after day, millions of inmates sit in jail doing nothing productive with their lives. We are paying to house inmates that may not even have a good reason to be there. For example, drug offenders are being kept with murderers and other violent offenders.
More people get incarcerated for non-violent crimes and crimes caused by mental illnesses or drug abuse (Webb, 2009) and because these people get put in regular prisons, instead of in mental health facilities or facilities to help against drug addiction, where they could be treated to further prevent crimes driven by their illness (Webb, 2009), the prisons get overfilled and cannot hold the more ‘important’ prisoners that needed to be locked away from the public. A strong link of the criminal justice process is that the system tries to keep it fair for everyone. Every defendant has the right to an attorney so they can be defended properly and fairly and “Only judges who are adequately informed about a case can effectively control the proceedings and examine evidence” (Tochilovsky, 2002) It is also important for the criminal justice system that those involved show discretion and although this is not always the case, discretion by the judges, police, etc.
Angela Davis in her book, Are Prisons Obsolete?, argues for the overall abolishment of prisons. Amongst the significant claims that support Davis’ argument for abolition, the inadequacy of prison reforms stands out as the most compelling. Reform movements truthfully only seek to slightly improve prison conditions, however, reform protocols are eventually placed unevenly between women and men. Additionally, while some feminist women considered the crusade to implement separate prisons for women and men as progressive, this reform movement proved faulty as female convicts increasingly became sexually assaulted. Following the theme of ineffectiveness, the reform movement that advocated for a female approach to punishment only succeeded in strengthening
People of all different races and ethnicities are locked behind bars because they have been convicted of committing a crime and they are paying for the consequences. When looking at the racial composition of a prison in the United States, it does not mimic the population. This is because some races and ethnicities are over represented in the correctional system in the U.S. (Walker, Spohn, & DeLone, 2018). According Walker et al. (2018), African-Americans/Blacks make up less than fifteen percent of the U.S. population, while this race has around thirty-seven percent of the population in the correctional system today.
I have never before visited a prison nor have I met a prisoner in my entire life. Why should I care about someone whom I would rarely see? But these inmates are our brothers and sisters who may have made bad choices, but don’t want their mistakes to hold them back. Throughout my life, my once miserable and hopeless circumstances were transformed by education, and I am certain that the same principle can be applied to anyone, including inmates, despite our differences in how we responded to circumstances. It is true that prison takes nearly everything away from them – even their hopes and dreams.
Specific Purpose Statement: To invite my audience to see the different viewpoints involved with life after prison in the U.S. Thesis: Those who were once in incarceration live with the title of being a former convict the rest of their life. I wish to explore their lives after incarceration and I hope to find the differing opinions some of you may have on those that have re-joined our community. Pattern of Organization: Multiple Perspective Pattern Introduction [Attention-Getter] How would you feel knowing you were standing behind a convict in line at a grocery store?