America’s Prison Population

The prison system in America, it’s size and scope, the amount of convicts housed within it at any given time, is a big point of contention for some people. But I generally fail to understand the way they choose to complain about it. I’d get it if it were just plain atrocious to them, if it were simply that it reflects something about our society they don’t like.

I even get wanting to figure out ways of cutting down on that.
The proposed solutions and specific gripes are usually ridiculous though.

It’s somehow the governments fault that those people are committing crimes and getting caught? The two things I suggest are a) quit it with the “war on drugs” bullshit already and b) criticize the dumb asses who are in there for assault, attempted murder, burglary, grand theft auto, armed robbery, and other things of the like. If you don’t like the size our our prison population, address the two main problems: stupid laws, with which you need to know what the fuck you’re talking about so you can be specific, and stupid prisoners, the ones who landed their asses behind bars.

Legalize marijuana and prostitution, for starters.
Then allow for some time, see if it cuts down on the overall population.

After that, and after you’ve combed through currently existing laws and addressed any other
cases of sheer legislative idiocy, put the blame where most of it already belongs anyways: on the prisoners. I don’t have any responsibility to them just because we happen to be in the same country or even the same town. I played no part in their decisions, had no hand in whatever the hell they decided to do, and so I (and the rest of the more or less law-abiding segment of society) have absolutely no obligation to make any changes to what I’m allowed to do.

Nor do I have to smilingly accept the blanket forgiveness dished out for “lesser” crimes; when cities & states decide to try their hand at cutting down on the number of prisoners, they usually do it recklessly. Consequences arise that should’ve been anticipated and the root causes are never actually solved or even really brought up or directly targeted.

We passed some dumb ass law a while ago here in California, letting people out early if their crimes were “non-violent”, to alleviate overcrowding. There’s no good reason for having passed it though. If there’s a certain body of laws that we no longer feel are worth enforcing, we should be working to get them removed or amended. Which is why I would recommend legalizing marijuana and prostitution, at the very least. We shouldn’t be giving people a pass for violating laws that were in place when they were caught. The changes should have no bearing on it at all.

Really, what measure like that amount to are quick, short term solutions that not only fail to solve the problem, but create a whole new set of problems to go along with the old ones. It might have some instant gratification in lowering the current population, but it would be a hell of a lot better to expand as necessary to compensate for over-crowding, and to deal with the actual causes of it instead of slapping a temporary fix on it and calling it good for the foreseeable future.


5 thoughts on “America’s Prison Population

  1. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one over here saying “Then don’t do bad shit, idiot” as regards the criminal system. I’m not 100% on board with straight up legalizing some of the minor or non-violent “dumb shit,” but I’d rather do that than keep watching jails and prisons fill up with morons getting caught with dime bags, wasting time and resources that could perhaps be better used on murderers, rapists, arsonists or other folks who are a threat to others rather than just themselves.

    And, as a bonus to your suggestion of legalizing marijuana and prostitution, it would probably cut down on other crimes (mostly assault and theft, I suspect) because, being legal, individuals committing those former crimes would be less likely to be in seedy areas more prone to more severe crimes, thus cutting back on the opportunity factor. But that’s just my opinion.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I tend to think anything that pertains mainly (or entirely) to ones own health and recreation should be legal. I’d even go as far as to say cocaine ought to be legal, tbh, but that’s taking it a little to far for most people’s tastes. It’s not because I want to use it either; the way I look at it, certain things are self destructive but I consider it my right to be able to destroy myself, nor not. My right to choose. To me the biggest downside to the non-violent “dumb shit”, as you put it, would be enabling a little bit more social darwinism. Which is something that’s kind of in effect anyways, but we have a lot of artificial (and imo arbitrary) buffers that idiots from harming themselves. I don’t like laws that are intended to protect us from ourselves because I believe that’s our responsibility as individuals. To my way of thinking, laws should pretty strictly be for protecting us from being harmed by *others*, and protect others from being harmed by *us*.

      Beyond that haha, I say let the chips fall where they may. The idea of legalizing a lot of things kind of lines up with my worldview when it comes to things like that.

      “And, as a bonus to your suggestion of legalizing marijuana and prostitution, it would probably cut down on other crimes (mostly assault and theft, I suspect) because, being legal, individuals committing those former crimes would be less likely to be in seedy areas more prone to more severe crimes, thus cutting back on the opportunity factor. But that’s just my opinion.”

      I completely agree with that. Other countries have tried similar legislative agujstments and the worst problem they had (the *only* real problem, actually) was needles being left all over the place by junkies. That’s fixable though, and there are places in Nevada that are great examples of why prostitution should be legal, for exactly the reasons you describe. The women (and men) working are employed as independent contractors. It makes for a lot less victimization & sex trafficking, which seems like a great thing to cut down on to me.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Being from one of those places in Nevada, I’ve seen it first hand, so agree in that department. So far as Darwinsim, I’m on board with that concept (it’s like the warning on chainsaws; if you buy a chainsaw and need a warning not to use it on your genitals, I think you should use it on them…)

        I will never understand how everyone got so focused on protecting people from themselves (while simultaneously claiming those people are strong and empowered… Which would say they don’t need protecting, right?) instead of focusing, as you say, on being protected from others or protecting them from us. But that’s why I stay in my hole and try to keep actual personal interaction face to face to a bare minimum. XD

        Liked by 1 person

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