Argumentative Essay On Prison Reform

Words: 1171
Pages: 5

If you’ve ever written a bad check on accident, watched a movie or listened to a song without paying for it, fished without a license, you have committed a felony that could have caused you to sacrifice years of your life in jail, thousands of dollars in fines and legal aspects, and to deny your right as an American citizen of taking part in the voting system. These brutal repercussions seem like drastic measures for such menial offenses, but that is how our current prison system functions to this day. Prison reform is a way to counteract these measures. The concept of prison reform is the attempt to improve living conditions inside the prisons, to provide a more effective penalty system, and to provide alternatives to incarceration. Prison …show more content…
One author from a political website that addresses controversial issues in America states “I find some dark humor in the fact that those who engage in victimless crime don't create any real victims until they are put behind bars, at which point they cause the state to steal $47,000 a year from the tax paying public” (Suede par. 10). To put this number into perspective, there are 2,220,300 people imprisoned every year. That means that the taxpaying public must pay $10,435,410,000 total on our prison system per year, not to mention that 77% of people who have been in prison have reoffended. Furthermore, Suede voices that “putting people behind bars does nothing but squander resources. It deprives society of able-bodied workers and costs society massive amounts of resources which are stolen from the general public through the coercive theft of taxation” (par. 13). Our current prison system is used to severely punish people who commit petty crimes, yet the only people who are truly being punished are the taxpaying public. It would be more effective to use our resources and tax dollars on crime prevention rather than crime punishment, such as by helping troubled youth or improving homeless