Essay about Prisons: Suicide and mentally Ill Inmates

Submitted By juniortnt75
Words: 1224
Pages: 5

The unbelievable country of America is home of the free and land of the brave. In spite of this, America’s imprisonment rate is at a far higher rate than any other industrial democracy. In 2005 about nine million prisoners were imprisoned in the world, and of this more than two million were being held in U.S. prisons. Our prison system spends more than $30 billon annually. The money is spent toward several items such as food, medical care, personnel, modernized handcuffs, specialized toilets to prevent suicides, and barbwire fences to prevent escapes. Inmates are attended to by doctors who write over $1 million in prescriptions, as well as dentists that pull an average of 330 teeth a month. They wash, dry and fold bright orange clothes at 170 pounds of laundry a load. 35,000 meals are prepared a day, totaling over 13 million meals a year. Prisons were originally built to rehabilitate those who broke the law. If someone is in prison for 40 years or less they have enough time in life for a second chance, any time over 40 years wouldn’t be consider rehabilitation, which is inhumane. I feel that if a human kills another human, regardless the circumstances, it should be considered as murder. The U.S. should have a standard number of years for each crime. For instance, if someone commits murder the offender should get 40 years; voluntary Manslaughter should get 10 years, and Involuntary should get 5 years. Today there are 5 different types of murder; First Degree Murder, Second Degree Murder, Third Degree Murder, Voluntary Manslaughter, and Involuntary Manslaughter. The United States has been considered a racist country for centuries. Going back to slavery, African Americans and even Hispanics have never been treated as equals by their European counterpart. Even though slavery was abolished with the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 racial tension is still felt to this day, and the most obvious is within our prison system. African Americans and Hispanics make up approximately one fourth of the U.S. population. However, within the prison system they comprise a stunning two thirds of the population which parallels with the history of racism in the U.S. From 1976 to 2005, African Americans were accused of committing fifty-two percent of all murders in America. Also the U.S. arrested more than five thousand Americans for possession of cocaine, and more than four thousand of these were African American. I’m not excusing the fact that minorities make mistakes, but it’s hard to believe they are committing the majority of crimes. My theory is simple, if you take away the head of the household, primarily the main bread winner you also take away stability and hope for a family and its future. In other words, if you take away the father figure in a home the children lose a role model, the wife loses financial and moral support, and it too often pushes a young child out of childhood and directly into adulthood. This can cause a horrible, never ending cycle of run-ins with the law, more incarcerations, and further breakdown of the family. In America you are not considered an adult until you are the age of eighteen. An average 7,500 juveniles are imprisoned in adult prison facilities annually. However, these juveniles are by law too young to vote with adults, work most jobs with adults, watch r-rated movies without adults, smoke with adults, consume alcohol with adults, etc. Yet on the other hand the crimes they commit are labeled as adult crimes and they are treated as adults. Why are juveniles prohibited from interacting with adults on some most levels in society, yet treated the same in the prison system? To try and answer this question will always come back to reflect the juvenile’s maturity level. Who is it to say that murder is a mature action? As a matter of fact breaking any law is an immature action. In other words the laws on the outside of prison should apply on the inside. Jail personnel are simply not equipped to protect