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Thread: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

  1. #10

    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    If you think the spending ratios are improper or that our priorities aren't straight, please tell us how we should remedy the problem.

    I don't think the remedy would be easy. I suppose it could be debatable if this is even a problem or not. There are a lot of factors at play.

    But, please tell us how you would fix this dilemma.

  2. #11

    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    What is it 10-30% of the prison population are not even in the country legally. I can't remember the actual percentage.

    I would bet the majority of the crime is drug related.

    Going on to what Clone stated we are spending more on our prisons than on our education system, which i think is terrible.

    I say go back to the days of Alcatraz. Don't know if that will work or not but then it can't work any worse.

    Of course our system seems to create it's own criminal class.

  3. #12
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    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    Actually, per the article, the ratio in spending has changed, but that doesn't mean we spend more on prisons overall. I think education is still the primary item in most state budgets.

    From all I've heard, there are a lot of drug offenders, and, as the article suggests, they are getting there in part because of sentencing guidelines.

    Yes, bad associations are probably made in prison.

    The long term solution, as I see it, is to make sure kids grow up in a healthy, supportive, nurturing environment--because the absence thereof is probably where most behaviorial problems start. I'm certain if we were to look in the lives of prisoners, we'd find a lot of substance abuse in the family and absent fathers.

  4. #13

    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    The long term solution, as I see it, is to make sure kids grow up in a healthy, supportive, nurturing environment--because the absence thereof is probably where most behaviorial problems start. I'm certain if we were to look in the lives of prisoners, we'd find a lot of substance abuse in the family and absent fathers

    100% agree. I think the problem of absent fathers is a huge contributor to many of society's ills.

  5. #14
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    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    I have a friend who provides legal defense to juveniles, and he says an expert in the field told him that an absent father is the one characteristic the worst offenders all have.

  6. #15
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    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    Quote Originally Posted by matclone View Post
    I have a friend who provides legal defense to juveniles, and he says an expert in the field told him that an absent father is the one characteristic the worst offenders all have.
    A good club wrestling coach who is with kids all year around and takes them on trips and checks their school grades can help replace the father figure. Give him a $50K salary per year with additional money for travel and wrestling equipment and he can change the lives of 15-20 kids.

  7. #16

    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    Quote Originally Posted by matclone View Post
    Actually, per the article, the ratio in spending has changed, but that doesn't mean we spend more on prisons overall. I think education is still the primary item in most state budgets.

    From all I've heard, there are a lot of drug offenders, and, as the article suggests, they are getting there in part because of sentencing guidelines.

    Yes, bad associations are probably made in prison.

    The long term solution, as I see it, is to make sure kids grow up in a healthy, supportive, nurturing environment--because the absence thereof is probably where most behaviorial problems start. I'm certain if we were to look in the lives of prisoners, we'd find a lot of substance abuse in the family and absent fathers.
    The article does tell us that corrections spending has increased in the last 20 years, but it reflects the nominal increase, not the increase in real dollars. That would be a more important and relevant figure.

    The article also says he rate of increase for prison costs was six times greater than for higher education spending, not just education in general. That may be the key point here. Corrections spending has not outpaced K-12 spending that much.

    On average, K-12 spending in the US accounted for 7.9% of state budgets, while corrections represented 5.7% in fiscal year 206-2007. Additionally, Higher Educatio nspending accounted for 6.3%, indicating that both K-12 and higher education spending trump corrections spending ( http://www.pennbpc.org/budgetwatch/budgetwatch3.php ).

    The problem really isn't as bad as the article makes it seem. This is another case of sensational journalism.

    I think the most important part of the article was where it talked about tougher sentences. Three-strikes laws are certainly filling up jails, but that's what we enacted them for.

    You can also tell that some people are very easily influenced by sensational journalism and inaccurate reporting by the Pew center, like Sen. Sanders from Vermont. He seems to be worked up about corrections spending versus education spending, but the truth is that spending for both K-12 and higher education spending has trumped corrections spending -- and that higher spending on education has not reduced the inmate population.

  8. #17
    Super Moderator UGLY's Avatar
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    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    I would like to know how much of the prison population grew up in a single parent home, specifically single mother. I would also like to know how many of those in prison view prison as a deterrent to committing crime.

    Perhaps we should have stricter penalties with a more liberal death sentence to use as a deterrent. Take away TV, weights, games/ Leave them with bare essentials food, clothing, shelter and education. This would be a greater deterrent than the current situation.

  9. #18
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    Default Re: Record number of people in U.S. prisons

    Quote Originally Posted by UGLY View Post
    I would like to know how much of the prison population grew up in a single parent home, specifically single mother. I would also like to know how many of those in prison view prison as a deterrent to committing crime.

    Perhaps we should have stricter penalties with a more liberal death sentence to use as a deterrent. Take away TV, weights, games/ Leave them with bare essentials food, clothing, shelter and education. This would be a greater deterrent than the current situation.
    My great-grandfather was a prison guard in a maximum security prison here in ohio and later a warden at a minimum security prison farm. He was appalled that prisoners would be provided television, weights, games, etc. His thoughts were that no prisoner was in jail involuntarily. They all chose at some point to violate a law that they knew constituted prison time. By choosing to violate the law they were in essence choosing to risk being caught and incarcerated. As a result they deserved nothing more than food, shelter, and a job to help them pay for what it cost to feed and shelter them.

    I think there is something to be said for making prison itself more of a deterrent to crime.

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