Who Should Be in Prison?

Prisoner. (photo: Getty)

 

ith the highest population of prisoners in the world (we’re 4% of the world’s population but house 22% of the world’s prisoners), it is imperative that we re-evaluate the way our country attempts to create order, peace and stability. Because when the systems that are here to help make society “safer” actually foster more chaos, violence and instability–they cannot go unchecked by the people. On the campaign trail a young sister asked me to follow up on a question about about incarceration for minor offenses. She asked “Well if low-level drug offenders don’t belong in prison, who do you think does?”

I was glad that she asked because in mainstream media and even alternative media there’s some conversation about what is wrong with our judicial system and how ineffective it has been in “rehabilitating” or providing tools for living a healthy, productive life, but very little discussion takes place on the practice of isolating human beings from society in general. And even less on the overall economic, mental, emotional and spiritual impacts of our prison system.

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