Politics, Technology, and Language

If thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought — George Orwell

Richard Gere and Carey Lowell read prison writings

Posted by metaphorical on 29 November 2006

Our nation’s prison population has soared by more than 600% since the 1970s, despite a drop in crime rates. As of 2005, over two million people were imprisoned in this country: almost one in every 136 U.S. residents.Black men, who make up 6% of the U.S. population, comprise over 40% of our prison population. A black male born today has a 32% chance of spending time in prison.Eleven states do not allow ex-cons to vote. Nearly 2,800,000 American children have at least one parent in prison or jail.

What does this mean for our democracy?



Read Prison Writings

Thursday, November 30

6 p.m.

Tischman Auditorium: 66 West 12th St., NYC

For tickets, please call (212) 229-5776, ext. 3121 or visit http://www.socres.org/punishment/

8 Responses to “Richard Gere and Carey Lowell read prison writings”

  1. plm said

    Perhaps if they want to continue to vote they might consider not committing felonies. But I’m sure the answer is instead to change the laws rather than requiring people to exercise personal responsibility and deal with the consequences of their actions.

  2. In most of Europe, people can vote even while in prison, and a couple of U.S. states allow it too. But leave that aside. The voting question is whether people can vote after they serve their time.

    Look, most of those felons are involve drugs, and most are in for drug use, or nominal dealing that supports their habit. (And there’s a racial bias to that, crack cases more likely to end up as felony plea bargains than coke cases, for example.)

    Do we really need to disenfranchise a few million drug users, even after we’ve stupidly locked them up for a few years?

  3. Ever dealt drugs? I haven’t. I had plenty of opportunities to. I chose not to. No one is forced to deal drugs. No one is forced to do drugs. Break the law face the consequences. My criminal buddies used to tell me, “Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.”

    Those who make the choice to engage in illegal behavior must then deal with the consequences of their actions. If they’re too stupid to understand that their actions have consequences then our society as a whole is better for their inherently stupid views not being represented by a vote.

    Europe won’t have to worry about those things once they either convert to sharia law in a few years or engage in some serious old school genociding.

    You commit a felony, you lose your right to partake in the voting process. You want to keep your right? Don’t commit a felony. It’s really pretty simple.

  4. The question isn’t whether they should live with the consequences of their actions, it’s what we, who judge them and sentence them, should make those consequences out to be.

    I would think that as a quasi-libertarian, you’re not happy about punishing an essentially victimless crime like drug use in the first place, and as a fellow cheap bastard, you don’t want to pay a share of felony tuition, $30-60k a year for a victimless crime.

    Anyway, I don’t think the people who are disenfranchised are speaking up the loudest for their right to vote.

  5. True, I’d much rather have mass public executions.

  6. Dang. You put up your shingle just a couple of weeks ago, and already you’ve got a flamboyant troll.

    I’m jealous.

  7. MedaCague said

    Her headache wanted to shoot her too.

  8. […] The Bad Astronomer wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerpt […]

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