Prison Nation | The Hoglawyer

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Prison Nation

Posted By on Wed, Aug 20, 2008 at 5:08 PM

According to the Justice Department, we now have 2.3 million people locked up in our nation's prisons and jails.  Between 2000 and 2007, the number of inmates in custody in prisons or jails increased by 367,200. Male inmates (315,100) accounted for 86% of the increase to the custody population.

I saw an interesting quote by a progressive Sheriff in Colorado, something like "the best jail is an empty jail."    I suppose that is right if he means that he would prefer there be no crime. What he really meant was that jail should be the last resort.

The sad thing to me is - we have so few options.  What good is assessing a fine if someone was stealing because they were broke in the first place.

I agree that we need a bigger jail here in Pulaski County -- but there has not been enough emphasis on reducing the number of people sent to jail in the first place. Remember when Judge Flemming held Sheriff Johnson in contempt for letting people out?  It's not like the sheriff was letting out violent criminals -- Judge Flemming is the traffic judge and presumably everyone he sends to jail is sent for non-violent crimes ( although some might argue getting a 3rd DWI is worse than some violent crimes)   I liked this quotes, "Jail should only be for separating those who prey on the innocent."   Maybe, but what good is giving a fine instead of jail time --- when people could simply refuse to pay their fines.   I think there should be two jails -- one for rapists, felons, and "real criminals" and then another for the rest - the people who refuse to pay fines, refuse to get car insurance, who shop lift, or write hot checks.  The main purpose of the jail should be to promote public safety -- if we have any room left over we can worry about the non-violent offenders then.  

 

 

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Hoglawyer

  • I want my two dollars !!!

    In the movie, "Better Off Dead," with John Cusack, there is this sub-plot of the local newspaper delivery boy stalking Cusack to get his $2.  Some people will go to great lengths to get their $2 in real life as well.
    • May 28, 2009
  • Publishing to Perish ?

    In an interesting twist, the Arkansas Supreme Court today amended Ark. Sup. Ct. Rule 5-2 and will now allow all cases to be cited, doing away with the distinction between published and unpublished opinions.
    • May 28, 2009
  • Death Penalty Reform

    The death penalty makes me nervous. It makes me nervous because there is always a chance the wrong person is being executed.
    • Mar 27, 2009
  • More »

Most Shared

  • Take yourself there: Mavis Staples coming to LR for Central High performance

    Gospel and R&B singer and civil rights activist Mavis Staples, who has been inspiring fans with gospel-inflected freedom songs like "I'll Take You There" and "March Up Freedom's Highway" and the poignant "Oh What a Feeling" will come to Little Rock for the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the desegregation of Central High.
  • Klan's president

    Everything that Donald Trump does — make that everything that he says — is calculated to thrill his lustiest disciples. But he is discovering that what was brilliant for a politician is a miscalculation for a president, because it deepens the chasm between him and most Americans.
  • On Charlottesville

    Watching the Charlottesville spectacle from halfway across the country, I confess that my first instinct was to raillery. Vanilla ISIS, somebody called this mob of would-be Nazis. A parade of love-deprived nerds marching bravely out of their parents' basements carrying tiki torches from Home Depot.
  • Lynchings hidden in the history of the Hot Springs Confederate monument

    Hot Springs twice erupted into the kind of violence that has its roots in the issues left unresolved by the Civil War, and both times, it happened right where that monument to Confederate soldiers stands today.

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation