Each day I devote, or at least attempt to devote, part of my time to Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Quora.com. Most often I fail in two or three of those areas.
Most of my posts and online activities relate to prisoners, prison reform, and or criminal justice reform, as well as posting excerpts from the life and times of the infamous Wayne T. Dowdy. Sometimes I address other social issues to let my voice be heard.
I’m a returning citizen, who had never used a cellphone until August 28, 2018, and yet, now I am working at having four websites live before June 2019 arrives. I’m determined to make a difference in the lives of others by doing what I do.
I always want to write my blog posts for straightfromthepen.com and waynedowdy.weebly.com. I just run out of time each day and come up short. 🙁
Oh, I forgot, working on revising and writing my books to learn the formatting process to help those caged behind walls, bars and fences and others be published, and as part of one of many planned business adventures.
The point in all the above is that I am a man with a mission who wants to make a difference and to let his voice be heard.
I often disagree with viewpoints expressed by others on penological and social issues. I want to believe that change is possible, and that society has became more humane since the Romans ruled the earth. The following debate is one such social issue I posted as an answer and then replied to on Quora.com:
People believe that prison should be tougher for the inmates, since there are too many luxuries awarded at the expense of taxpayers. Is being in prison as good as people think it is or worse than people could imagine?
The people who believe that prison should be tougher for the inmates, since there are too many luxuries awarded at the expense of taxpayers, need to sign up for a prison stint to learn about FAKE NEWS. Prison life sucks!
Prisoners learn to tolerate and accept the conditions of prison life, regardless of those conditions. Humans adapt to their environments.
Rehabilitation versus punishment has been on the table for decades. Better results come from providing programs to help people change their lives, as is evident by the passage of the First Step Act, which requires the United States Federal Bureau of Prisons to create and provide more evidence-based programs to reduce recidivism.
None of those programs will include having prisoners chained and tortured until they decide to repent and change their evil, wicked ways.
The punitive aspect of prison is removing the person from society; inhumane treatment leads to psychological damage (being in prison under decent living conditions may still lead to the development of psychiatric issues).
Most prisoners return to society. Which is best: to have men and women confined in an environment that breeds more illness than it treats or cures, or to provide an environment where those men and women learn to change behaviors so that they exit the system in better shape than when they arrived?
An experimental prison program in Connecticut (Prison Reform Progress), which is modeled after those in Germany known to provide more humane living conditions, are showing positive results; meaning that perhaps America will change its failed criminal justice system so that men and women who go to prison will leave and not return, but I guarantee that would not happen if society reverted to the days of torturing and mistreating its prisoners.
Most people on the outside believe that EVERY PERSON INCARCERATED should NEVER get out of prison and that is a fact that is 99% true.
I’m sure a lot of that is true, which is of course, is based on ignorance of the law and crimes that lead to prison. Stereotyping others also applies.
If those who believe in such a way would attempt to investigate and were intelligent enough to comprehend the complexities of the United States criminal justice system, then they’d know how easy it is for someone to go to prison.
Everyone who goes to prison is not a serial killer, rapist, murderer, robber, or child molester.
I met many men in prison who said, “I never knew I could be put into prison for doing that.”
In Violent Crime Misconception (https://straightfromthepen.com/2016/02/24/violent-crime-misconception/), I refer to the deception of California voters and the absurd laws passed by the California legislatures, who I assure you have a vested interest in high incarceration rates (read “The Truth About Incarceration, Part II” by Wayne T. Dowdy, https://straightfromthepen.com/2015/04/05/the-truth-about-incarceration-part-ii/).
How could any rational legislature vote for a bill that would result in some men and women going to prison for 25-years-to-life for crimes as simple as shoplifting or stealing pizza?
If those people who feel everyone who goes to prison should not be released knew of such laws, would they feel the same? Probably not.
Then again, the Romans and many Rome citizens thought it was okay to feed Christians to the Lions for entertainment, so … has society digressed from what was learned through history about the evil nature of some in power, to endorse such practices as keeping someone in a cage for eternity?
I hope not and know that most do not feel in such a way, or else the legislatures would not be voting different these days.
Even though you make some good points I stand by my post. Watch any YT video about trials and read the comments of the ignorant and ill-informed if you doubt my thoughts. People get charged with offences such as you mentioned and then get acquitted, but it doesn’t matter in the court of public opinion. You are charged – you MUST be guilty. Lock ’em up and throw away the key. Another “win” for the prosecution!!
YouTube and television programs only represent a small portion of the population. The editors of the program controls content to express their views on the issues, or to be what needs said or shown to get higher ratings.
Even politicians fall victim to the Editor’s Choice, when the politician says many things during an interview that the editor cuts to shape into the program’s viewpoint.
I knew several people in prison who felt the same way as what you state, but they were the same ones who, for a lighter sentence, helped the government put other people in prison.
As I wrote, a lot of the public opinion is based on ignorance. Most continue to sit in front of a television and watch programs designed to increase viewership through sensationalism, ignorant of what is the truth. Ignorance exists because of a lack of information. 🙂