By Michael Jacobson
Over million individuals are incarcerated in America’s prisons and jails, 8 instances as many due to the fact that 1975. necessary minimal sentencing, parole companies motive on sending humans again to felony, three-strike legislation, for-profit prisons, and different alterations within the felony procedure have contributed to this impressive upward thrust of the overall legal population.
After overseeing the most important urban prison approach within the nation, Michael Jacobson understands first-hand the interior workings of the corrections approach. In Downsizing Prisons, he convincingly argues that mass incarceration won't, as many have claimed, lessen crime nor create extra public defense. easily placed, throwing away the bottom line is no longer the answer.
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Extra resources for Downsizing Prisons: How to Reduce Crime and End Mass Incarceration
No specialized knowledge is required to think “this could have been me or my child,” or to become frightened and angry on hearing the awful stories of the crimes com- MASS INC ARCERATION 21 mitted against Polly Klaas or Megan Kanka. On a visceral level, it seems natural to want to extract revenge against someone like Richard Davis, who could so brutally take the life of a small child. Moreover, expressing anger about crime may feel socially acceptable in an environment already oriented toward retribution and punishment.
Indeed, for some law makers, expert research comes across as virtually otherworldly when compared to the power of the crime issue in an environment already punitive toward the poor (who, not surprisingly, commit most “street” crime), and as reflected in the outcries of and stories told by crime victims. These stories, coupled with this underlying animosity toward the poor, the public’s fear of crime (until 28 MASS INC ARCERATION recently on the rise), and the benefits perceived by politicians in appearing tough on crime, have played an enormous role in driving contemporary corrections policy.
The other is that differences are effected through the “normal” structured policy-making process of the federal and state government. At the state level, for instance, governors’ offices and legislators regularly propose new executive rules, programs, laws, and revisions to policy, based on a host of substantive and political concerns. Of course, these ways of bringing about change are often interconnected; frequently, a symbiotic connection builds between the force of social movements and the more “inside baseball” political processes through which new laws and policies are forged.
Downsizing Prisons: How to Reduce Crime and End Mass Incarceration by Michael Jacobson