Lock ’em up

In this country we have had a lock ’em up mentality for a long time. If someone crosses the line, then send them to the slammer. The South is really good at locking up its citizens. Locking up our citizens is big business.  Some folks are making tons of money locking up those Americans who have crossed some line or another. Rehabilitation is for wimps. Real men, if they go astray, should know how to get on the right path. Period. They don’t need any of that hand holding, group therapy garbage. The fact that we are spending less on education, which happens really to be the only way out of prison and poverty, is not really germane to this conversation.  Louisiana is really, really good at locking up its citizens. I really don’t understand how, in a nation of Christians, we don’t feel that it is morally wrong to have a for-profit prison system. I simply don’t understand it. Isn’t there just a little conflict of interest if you get paid by the prisoner? Then you place on top of this for-profit prison system the craziness that is our judicial system. Blacks and other minorities are more likely to get arrested and do time than anyone else in our society. Once you are in the system, there is nothing in prison that is designed to help you get on the right path, so you are more likely to get arrested and go back to jail once you get out. What’s the point?


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Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.


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