Revenge or Rehabilitation?

This weeks post/episode takes a look at the always controversial topic of the justice system. With a massive prison population an a never ending war on drugs adding to the issue every day, soon 1 out of every 100 men in america will be in prison at some point in their life.




Is prison to answer to all the crimes we use it for, does a white collar money launderer deserve to be in the same place as rapists and murderers


Does sating the need for revenge trump our social responsibility to people who quite often are a victim of circumstance?


Also on a related note Preston takes a shot at bad drivers who many think deserve prison as well. And Canadas new government sponsored nark app. 

6 thoughts on “Revenge or Rehabilitation?

  1. “Revenge or Rehabilitation?”

    For violent criminals it is neither. It is warehousing because we as a society haven’t got the guts to kill more of them. So to make society safer we pay to keep them in prison.

    “Is prison to answer to all the crimes we use it for, does a white collar money launderer deserve to be in the same place as rapists and murderers?”

    Probably not, but again, the rapists and murder are being warehoused to make society safer. If more states kept the skids greased on death row that would help a lot. Kill some. Maybe deter a few others.

    The white collar criminals still need to be punished. Probably could be done cheaper outside of jail.


    • Of course an estimated less than 10% of rapists ever get caught and imprisoned and murder has a very low recidivism rate.

      In the meantime the tiny proportion of rapists and murderers in prison who truly are sociopathic risks to society come to dominate prison culture and brutalise the drug users and minor property offenders who are only in there for a year or two. Those brutalised minor offenders go on to become tomorrow’s sociopaths.

      Or you could increase the use of the death penalty – thereby guaranteeing that potential candidates have nothing to lose by killing witnesses and law enforcement officers.

      Prisons don’t make society safe, they make it more dangerous. Sadly, policymakers either don’t care or don’t think any harder than lwk does.

      The final line of the executive summary of a 1989 UK Government White Paper on the prison system read “Prisons are an expensive way to make bad people worse”.

      If you want to rehabilitate offenders, keep them well away from prisons.

  2. My views are utterly opposite to your above respondent iwk2431!

    I visit a local women’s prison as a volunteer, and many of the prisoners are on a programme ‘RAPt’ ( Rehabilitation for Addicted Prisoners Trust. These prisoners are being supported in dealing with their addictions, getting counselling and cognitive behavioural therapy, and the results are amazing.
    ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’ does not have an exclusion clause
    and ‘Let he who is without sin should cast the first stone’ means that i am not worthy to judge others, certainly as they say unless i have walked a mile in their shoes

    I am not religious, but i respect the teachings of various religions they have a lot of good to share

    Addiction does not discriminate, white collar workers, housewives, university professors, doctors all become addicts. Addiction is one of the main reasons people break the law. Just because a ‘white collar money launderer’ is ‘white collar… that is no reason to treat him or her any differently than any other criminal…Money laundering is often associated with drugs and other serious criminal activity. The money launderer is assisting drug dealers & other serious crime, and is therefore a very serious crime. Just because the money launderer is detached from the victim does not mean it is a victimless crime. quite the opposite. We have to trust the courts in their sentencing . that is what the legal system is for!

    Living in a democracy we subscribe to the society we live in, its rules, regulations, government and legal system. if we didn’t we would break petty rules all the time such as red traffic lights when no-one is coming, drive on the wrong side of the road when it suits us & ignore speed limits when we think it is safe to do so. Prisons are a part of the legal system, but they could do with a lot more support for rehabilitation of prisoners from groups like RAPt.

  3. The prison system is an interesting subject which I’ve looked into somewhat and for what it’s worth will share my observations, please note that these are my observations and may not agree with everyone else’s.

    The first thing is that more and more these days prisons are owned not by the government but by individual companies who use the prisoners for labor, quite legally.

    Now, while I don’t think that prisoners should be allowed to lounge around doing nothing while someone else pays for their housing and food, I also wonder what sort of impact this has on their rehabilitation or lack of it.

    I would assume, in a perfect world, that a prison would be firstly a place with the intention of taking an individual out of society who has harmed others to the point he is looked on as a menace by those around him. This would be for the safety of others.

    However, once out of the way of others I would expect, in a perfect world, that prison be a place where the individual can redeem themself, do what they can to make up for what they may have done, learn how to get along in society without having to resort to what they did to get into prison, and finally, through all that, regain their own self respect.

    For, from what I’ve seen, it is self respect lost which originally sends an individual down the criminal path in the first place. Thoughts of, “we’ll I’m just a piece of shit like everyone says so who cares what I do,” that allow them to commit the crimes they do. Or of course desperation, necessity, or the inability through lack of education or experience to handle the life problems they run into.

    Anyways, I just wonder, in a prison run by a company for the purpose of cheap labor, how much rehabilitation actually occurs? And do they care?

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