Americahas about 2.
1 million inmates that are currently in prison that are the most ofany country in the world. The United States spends an estimated 80 billiondollars on the incarceration of inmates. It’s not financially responsible forthe United States to spend billions of dollars to keep non-violent inmatesimprisoned for such long periods of times. In the article ” The massincarceration Problem in America” Grace Wyler states, “The United States has anenormous prison problem. A more than 2.4 million prisoner sized problem, to beprecise locked up in the archipelago of federal penitentiaries, statefacilities, and local jailhouses”. It’s unjustfor them to end up having such long sentences but they did break the law andface the consequences.
The laws that are in place in the United States punishpeople harshly for minor crimes to be sent to prison are completelyunacceptable. If the law is broken that said person should receive some form ofpunishment. The crime should fit thepunishment. To mass incarcerate is not the way to handle the problems that goon within our society.
The tremendous amount of moneythat is spent to keep these prisoners’ feed, imprisoned, medicated, etc. is a burdenon the taxpayers. The United States needs to havereform and a new standard on who really needs goes to prison and who needs togo seek rehabilitation. The war on drugs has been a complete failure and hassent many non-violent offenders to prison. American Justice System needs to beable to tell the difference between whom it’s mad at and whom it’s afraid of.The justice system shouldn’t throw the book at every non-violent offender. Themoney that is wasted on these people can go to help the community.
The problemwith mass incarceration is that too much money is spent. What I can propose toalleviate this problem is to send non-violent drug offenders to seekrehabilitation put them on parole or probation. Annually the United States spends 80billion dollars to keep the corrections system operational every year. In thearticle “How to fix America’s mass incarceration problem” Brad Parks reportedthat America spends 80 billion to keep more than 7,000 correctional facilitiesstaffed and operational. In the article “Why Mass Incarceration Doesn’t Pay”Jason Furman reports “80 billion is spent annually on corrections or over 600dollars per household. Brad Park goes on to quote Jason Pye who is director ofjustice reform at Freedom Works who said, “What kind of return are we gettingout of our investment? In the article “Why mass incarceration doesn’t pay” byJason Furman reported ” For one person to be imprisoned it would costapproximately 30,000 dollars for adults and 110,000 dollars for juveniles. The solution that can possibly helpreduce mass incarceration is to grant people who commit lesser non-violentcrimes with parole or probation. This solution can help prisoners stay out ofprison and keep them from forming criminal ties while in prison.
In return thiswill allow the government to rebalance the budget and spend money whether it beinfrastructure, healthcare, security, education etc. Brad Park’s reports “In2007, Texas projected it would need an additional 17,000 prison beds by 2012 atan estimated cost of 2 billion. Rather than provide than provide them, thelegislature approved a two-year expenditure of 241 million in probation, paroleand re-entry programs. The evidence that shows that thesolution will work is an example presented by Texas and other states that havefollowed in the same direction. Texas has seen recidivism rates fall 25 percentand has saved the state 443 million dollars.
Bard Parks states, ” The resultswere immediate recidivism rates fell 25 percent. Parole revocations fell 49percent. In just the first two years, the policies combined to trim the prisonpopulation by 9,000 a saving of 443 million.” There is another solution that canbe acknowledged to the over spending in mass incarceration that is proposing anew crime bill to be set. The federal government should direct more funds tostates that are able to keep their prison population low. In the scholarlyjournal “The Reverse Mass Incarceration Act” by Lauren Brooke writes “Thefederal government can institute a new set of financial incentives based inthese state experiments to successfully bring down imprisonment and crime”.
This proposal will help the UnitedStates annual budget. The funds that are saved can go into other programs thatcan help others whether it is in education, health, infrastructure, and etc.The inmates are able to benefit from this and find the rehabilitation that theyneed. All inmates that enter the correctional system will leave it at somepoint during their sentence. Reforming and integrating back into the communitywill help contribute back to society. This furthermore will in return keepincarceration low and reduce the overall cost that kept people incarcerated.
Work CitedBrooke, Lauren. “The Reverse MassIncarceration Act”, Brennan Center ForJustice, October 15, 2015. Furman, Jason, Holtz-Eakin, Douglas. “WhyMass Incarceration Doesn’t Pay” The New York Times, April 21, 2016 Parks, Brad.
“How to fix America’s massincarceration Problem”, New York Post, November 1,2015Wyler, Grace.”The Mass Incarceration Problem in America”, Vice, July 26,2014