The Prison System Should Be Abolished

1237 WordsDec 11, 20165 Pages
Like Angela Davis, I believe that the prison system needs to be abolished. The prison system which is a significant part of punishment is incompetent and deeply flawed in the United States. Prison system reform needs immediate attention while abolition permanently will require time. Nietzsche’s theory of punishment explains how punishment come about in society and Davis’s critique of the prison system helps back my argument that the prison system needs to be abolished. Traditionally, there have been four justifications for punishment: deterrence, confinement, rehabilitation and retribution. While these methods can be flawed at some point in history they served as primary reasons for the justification of punishment. Recently, there has been an epistemic shift in thinking about punishment where now it is focused on retribution and incarceration. The emphasis on this method has lead to an increase in incarceration and the rise of a prison system. While we acknowledge that there will always be a need for society to punish criminals in order to protect the rights of individuals, however a prison/prison system is not the correct way to handle such problems. Currently the prison system is being used an economic tool for private companies to exploit cheap labor from inmates. Known as the prison-industrial complex private enterprises are now able to build more prisons to “benefit” society and themselves as the prison population grows. Since the 1980’s the growth in prison
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