Well if we get away from the stupid rhetoric and look at the facts, it makes things a little easier. The US prison population has skyrocketed since the 80’s. Why you ask? Primarily because of mandatory sentencing guidelines that were all the rage of elected officials voted in – on both sides of the aisle.
Now, while violent crimes rates have dropped considerably in the last decade, most of the mandatory sentencing is due to drug related crimes. When the NOLA article mentions the likelyhood of the children of offenders becoming incarcerated, they fail to mention the most likely cause.
We ought to be concerned because we recognize that incarcerations beget incarcerations. Parents who go to prison leave behind children who eventually follow them there. Some might want to blame genetics, but it’s just as likely that seeing one’s parent sent away — even a parent with problems — further destabilizes a child’s household and contributes to their worsening behavior. — Jarvis DeBerry – NOLA – Sunday, March 27, 2011
It’s not some magic advanced Darwinian DNA evolution among criminal bloodlines. It’s simply drug use and the impressions passed on from parent to child. It’s not society’s fault nor social injustice. People make bad decisions and if caught have to do the punishment. Children see this and unfortunately a large percentage learn the bad habits.
Who do people like Brett Malone want to blame? The Christians, evil profiteers, the governors…everyone but the people who are ultimately to blame. Guess who that is? The people who consciously make the wrong choices.
Now some people argue that privatizing prisons would invite corrupt policies to send more people to prison. Why would a company purchase (or invest in building) a prison with no inmates?
Again, if we move away from the rhetoric, a private company would typically build a facility that is designed to hold enough prisoners for which the market bears. Private businesses most likely would not build something to hold 1,000 prisoners (as an example) if the state was only able to send 200. It wouldn’t make financial sense, and private business is there to make a profit.
The private company can’t simply order extra prisoners. The judicial and legal system has to generate them – all through elected laws and officials.
Will Jindal’s suggestion to privatize prisons save taxpayers money? Good question and I haven’t researched it enough to make an educated guess. It’s painfully obvious that the current methods and policies combined with bad choices by offenders will certainly continue to cost us taxpayers money.
However, one thing is for sure: the “social justice” programs have caused this state and others some very real fiscal problems. Those have to be solved through short-term and long-term strategies.