What is the Best Alternative to Prison Essay

This essay has a total of 451 words and 4 pages.

What is the Best Alternative to Prison



³The U.S. prison population has tripled since 1980 so that on any given day there are 1.5
million Americans behind bars.² (Alternatives 1). There is a clear overcrowding problem
in todays prisons. Why? I believe that the population explosion in the prison system is
due to the increasing moral decline of America. Prisons should keep dangerous criminals
off the streets and keep others from committing a crime. (Prisons 1) One would think that
being locked up is to be feared. But in todayıs society, criminals simply do not care.
³Incarceration is not effective in crime reduction² (Alternatives 1).


But what can be done to fix this ever growing epidemic? More prisons can always be
constructed, right? Building more jails is expensive and does not solve the problem.
(Prisons 1) So we must now search for plausible alternatives to incarceration.


First of all, there is the option of only putting violent criminals in jail. Non-violent
criminals could be put into work programs. (Prisons 2) They could spend their days
cleaning and repairing Americaıs highways and national parks. This, in my opinion is an
excellent idea!


Yet we still have to deal with the violent criminals. There are some different options in
punishing those individuals. ³Early release programs let prisoners out of jail before
their sentence is complete. This promotes good behavior in prison and keeps the prison
population lower. However, many released prisoners just commit another crime and are
returned to jail² (Prisons 1). Early release seems as though it would work wonderfully,
but alas falls short.


I think that prisoners should not be released early, or at all for that matter. They
should serve out their complete term. If parole were not an option, maybe someone would
think twice before they pull the trigger. And for those who donıt take heed, they would
be locked up where they belong.


The last option is by far the best in my eyes. ³Before the abolition of slavery there was
no real prison system in the United States. Punishment for crime consisted of physical
torture referred to as corporal or capital punishment² (Browne 2). Doesnıt sound too bad
to me. I believe that the punishment should fit the crime. If a man beats his wife to
death, he in turn should be beaten to death.


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