Mass Incarceration

1495 words 6 pages
English 2
9 September 2013
Mass Incarceration Mass incarceration is one of very many huge problems we have here in America. But when you really look into the core of the situation, whose fault is it really. Right away you think it is the criminals fault for getting arrested in the first place right? More people should be well behaved and not end up in prison? But what a lot of people fail to notice are the ones that actual do the actual sentencing. In Paul Butlers book, Lets Get Free he writes, “I became a prosecutor because I hate bullies. I stopped being a prosecutor because I hate bullies.” Do I think that some people belong in prison? Absolutely. But I also think that there are also even more people that
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America currently holds over two million in prisons with double that number under supervision of parole and probation, according to federal government figures
(Linn Washington Jr., A Major Destabilizing Influence) So what exactly does Mass incarceration cost us, average Americans? Mass incarceration consumes over $50-billion annually across America – money far better spent on creating jobs and improving education. Instead of giving people a minimum sentence, what they ideally deserve, they are getting double, even triple the time and its costing people more and more every single year. It doesn’t look like that is going to change soon. On June 17, 2013, the court made federal sentencing a little more sensible. In the Alleyne vs. United States case, it overturned and held that the facts supporting a mandatory minimum sentence had to be found beyond a doubt by a jury, or agreed for a plea agreement, rather than the judge making their decision based on the evidence that is shown. Alleyne didn’t get rid of mandatory minimum sentencing provisions, which remain criminal law’s bluntest instrument. Those harsh statutes still bind judges’ hands and they will continue to sentence people to these long, undeserving sentences. I have a feeling that if the United States would have won this particular case it would save people a lot of money. I think way to much money is getting put into something that could


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