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Incarceration, There Must be Another Way

Updated on December 20, 2010
United States World Leader
United States World Leader

The Cost of Imprisonment


The cost of incarcerating a person in the United States is estimated to be on average US$60 per day. Given the high rates of incarceration in western countries, surely we should be considering other forms of punishment.


In the old days people were literally branded as a thief. In some Muslim countries, a hand is cut off for thieving. Again in some Muslim countries and in the past in western countries, public flogging is considered as punishment.


Recently a poll was taken in California, as to whether “Pot” should be legalized. How many people are in prison for pot related offences?


Prisoners who are sentenced to death end up spending years and years in prison, at a huge cost to the tax payer.


England used to send prisoners to a penal island [Australia], France sent theirs to DevilIsland. During WW11, Germany used penal regiments on their front lines.


I am not necessarily suggesting any of the above solutions; I merely refer to them to show that there are or have been alternatives to prison. I am not saying that I am for the death penalty but years in a cell under the sentence of death, seems a cruel and unjust punishment. If the death penalty is to exist, then a period of perhaps one year should be allowed for appeal, if after that time acquittal isn’t given they should be executed immediately.


Only pedophiles and violent criminals should be imprisoned and then they should not have it easy. There are thousands upon thousands of good people around the world who have to live on just a handful of rice a day, why shouldn’t the violent criminals? You may say “what about their rights?’. I think they lost those when they chose to blatantly ignore other peoples. It costs more to house and feed a criminal who abuses our rights, than it does to house and feed a soldier who protects them. This surely cannot be right.


White collar and other non violent criminals should perhaps be conscripted into various government departments, where they work for minimal wages, for given amounts of time.


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    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 7 years ago from A small southern town

      I, too, think a criminal should be treated as such.

      They forfeit some rights by actions of being a criminal.

      In no way, do I think they should be beaten for the entertainment of guards or tortured.

      Also, once they serve their time.......they have paid their debt to society.

      Perhaps, that is the point our system should make. Serve your time ( all of it) and start fresh.

      Some people will learn a life lesson, and some will learn only how to be smarter criminals. Close in on the latter group----quickly!

    • profile image

      jasper420 7 years ago

      so true its realy sad to think about all the peoople locked up and what there lives must be like

    • Lady Wordsmith profile image

      Linda Rawlinson 7 years ago from Lancaster, UK

      Many true words here rafken. Yet more food for thought from you.