prison time - When I rule the world. ;-)
Mar. 9th, 2004
05:49 am - prison time
When I rule the world---
I think prisons should be more about rehabilitation than punishment. I just saw a segment on ABC about the three strikes law in Cali. Yes they all said was that the crime rate went down, however the prisons are over flowing and nobody has shown that the longer you stay in prison reduces your chance of doing something again. What is the point of sending someone to prison for 5 years for vehicular manslaughter while under the influence when they are sorry and with alcoholism treatment they would remain an asset, rather than a burden to society. For some people just the agony of a trial I am sure is enough punishment to keep them from doing it again. It cost somewhere between 50K-75K a year to keep some one in prison, while if they were out and rehabilitated they might have earned that much contributing to our economy.
It cost several million dollars to put someone to death. And they have been finding that more and more of the prisoners on death row did not do it (do to DNA testing). Someone once said it is better to let a hundred guilty people free than to convict an innocent person. Why this society is so bent on an eye for an eye a tooth for a tooth. I do not know.
One study in the mid-west showed that even simple rehabilitation such as yoga and art reduced the recidivism rate by 30 percent. Imagine if rather than being in prison you learn to be a better criminal you learn to get in touch with the inner you and consequently learn how to be a member of society, rather than an outcast.
We as a society should move from keeping our prisoners together in cages to outpatient treatment with tracking bracelets. Of course with violent crime it is necessary to keep people away from the general populace, but not forever. But we should treat it as a disease, needing treatment rather than an inevitable consequence to crime.
If you send someone away for 20 years, what are they going to do when they get out. Any non-criminal skills they might have acquired before going to prison would be out of date. The only thing they might have learned during prison is from other prisoners on how to be a better criminal. So they will be back. Criminal treatment should last as long as it is necessary. Criminals are a product of society, and we should retrain them to rejoin society.
Let's bring yoga to the big house and stop punishing criminals.
(That's all for now.)
[ Edited at 05:51 AM. ]