Sentenced to…

Posted: June 17, 2012 by Ed Griffin in Prison, Reform
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Judge gavelThere is some fine print when someone is sentenced to prison. The judge may say, “I sentence you to X number of years, but the fine print says:

You are also sentenced to:

  • The real possibility of death. That’s not what the judge said, but the odds are high.
  • Homosexual rape
  • Poor medical care – prison officials choose the least expensive medical care
  • High odds to be knifed, to be the accidental victim of violence.
  • Of losing your self-esteem
  • Of divorce
  • Of becoming institutionalized.scream
  • If you need to get your high school diploma, be prepared for low pay teachers. Some are excellent, despite this, but many are incompetent.
  • You are also sentenced to being wrong in every situation. The guards and the staff are ALWAYS right and you are ALWAYS wrong.
  • You leave democracy when you leave the courtroom. There is no democracy in prison. It’s a dictatorship.
  • You are sentenced to miss family events, even the death of a parent.
  • You are not even able to practice the principles of restorative justice. How can you repay money to someone on $6.00 a day? How can you restore the community to health when you’re locked up?
  • You are sentenced to do time. Not to change yourself. Not to repair the harm done. Just to do time. How stupid.

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  1. Joe Pineda says:

    Do guards do anything to prevent rapes in prison? I mean, even on account of being a well-behaved inmate?

  2. This is very depressing, Ed – although you’re not telling me anything I didn’t already know. I had a friend who went to jail for murder (he murdered some poor fisherman in a schizophrenic delusion, didn’t even know him.) He wouldn’t plead insanity in case he found himself in the back wards forever and instead, went to jail for 12 years. However, we never had to worry about him physically as he had a 6th dan, black belt in karate. Not everyone is protected in this way.
    I’ve been offline with computer problems for 10 days. Glad to reconnect and to hear your news from the doctor was good.

  3. Joanne says:

    The one that gets me the most is that, as a prisoner, there is almost total control over your person by others. You lose your dignity and right to self-determination. You lose basic human rights, even though according to our laws (CCRA, Charter of Rights and Freedoms) you are only supposed to lose your liberty–nothing else.

    But then it doesn’t even stop there, those who wish to continue to want to have anything to do with you by visiting also have their rights violated, specifically the right to be treated as innocent until proven guilty. Visitors are punished by having their right to associate with their imprisoned family member taken away because prison officials “suspect” they were interfereing with the security of the institution. They do not need to prove anything and there is truly no real recourse.

    And why in a supposedly liberal democracy is this allowed to happen? In my view it is because there is a strong prejudice against incarcerated persons that allows abuses to take place while the rest of us turn a blind eye. It really is allowed to continue for all the same reasons that all other prejudices in history have been perpetrated and allowed to continue–“I don’t want to get involved”, “They brought it on themselves”, “They are different from us”, “I have enough of my own problems”.

    Thanks, Ed,for getting people thinking.

  4. Evidently, prisons are the new insane asylums. Most of the provincial mental hospitals on the Prairies have been closed, in favour of placing patients “in the community”, ostensibly because this was better for them, but really because it was cheaper, particularly since so few programs and supports are provided for them–another class of citizen who can’t complain and about whom nobody who counts cares. So, predictably, many end up in prisons.

    • Joanne says:

      Yes, I agree! I have seen some very sad stories with respect to not only mental illness but also intellectual disability, which is so totally sad! And CSC really does not know what to do with these people. They do not have staff that can even begin to know how to care for them, even if they wanted to care. It is bad enough that people who knew what they were doing when they committed their offences, are being treated like animals but there is nothing more galling than seeing people who behaved the way they did through no real fault of their own end up in the types of prisons we now have.

      • Ed Griffin says:

        You are right, Joanne. We’re in for a real tongue-lashing from our descendents. “You did that? I can’t believe it. What was wrong with your society? What did you do, great-grandfather? Nothing?”
        It won’t be pleasant, like we’re not pleasant with our slave-owning ancestors.

    • Ed Griffin says:

      Check out today’s post, Chris. Absolutely amazing. What a difference from today

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