The United States is one of the most prestigious countries in the world—at least that is what everyone says. We have grown as a country in population as well. The one thing that many people have some issues with is our country’s prison system. I will be honest, I did not know much about the prison systems until I did my own bit of research.
The International Center for Prison Studies estimates that America imprisons 716 people per 100,000 citizens (of any age). That is a lot of people. I really wonder where all of those people go. According to the Huffington Post, convicted felons are not allowed to vote in America, disenfranchising them and preventing them from wielding any political influence. Nearly six million Americans, or 2.5 percent of the voting age population, cannot vote because they have a felony on record.
I feel like people in prison are stripped completely of their rights. Voting in this country is extremely important. There are so many people that do not vote because they are careless, lazy or are just uneducated. People in prison may not be the worst human beings to walk the earth.
The upcoming election already seems to be a bit crazy with several candidates within the election and prisoners should be able to vote. Once they get out of prison and serve their time, they are going back into the real world to do better. They are still human beings and should have this right to vote because when they get out of prison, they should want to live in a country that is being led by someone that has the right ideas.
Another huge issue with prisoners and prison itself is the dehumanization of the people within it. The estimated number of people raped in prison is about 217,000 American prisoners a year, the Huffington Post states. This is traumatizing about 600 people a day. It really does not seem like the government is doing anything about it.
Since the numbers continue to float around each year, the government has attempted to change the way the prison is structured such as only having same gender prison cells, more supervision and training for staff and taking data down on sexual assaults behind bars. This can only do so much, but do we really know what causes these people to do this in prison?
I feel like the psychological services within prisons do not make any effort to help these people. If they understood what they were doing maybe they would learn to control themselves.
They do not need to be beaten and dehumanized because they assaulted someone, but educated to know that this is wrong and change needs to happen. Prisoners are in prison to be corrected, but they just sit in a jail cell and have very limited resources. From what I have learned about prison, there is education offered and services that help these people receive jobs in and out of prison.
I only see in the tabloids all the bad things about prison. The good stories for people within prison are not so crystal clear. The only enjoyable thing I have seen or read about prison is the film ‘The Shawshank Redemption’ because it actually has some sort of a happy ending, but also it shows that the prisoners are trying to change the prison itself by bringing a library and tutoring system. Prison is a huge issue within the United States. Many people can go on and on talking about it, but something needs to be changed to lower the number of rapes and give these people their rights back. Prison is a correction facility, not a place to make these people feel unhuman.