What to Punish?

rheimsWhat to Punish?

Faced With Overcrowded Prisons, Chicago Considers Ending Felony Arrests For Prostitution | ThinkProgress

Elected officials in Chicago are calling for a moratorium on felony charges for prostitution to reduce overcrowding at Cook County jail. The jail now houses 10,008 detainees and is likely to exceed the maximum capacity of 10,150 soon. In a news conference Wednesday, several county commissioners pointed to the law’s disproportionate focus on non-violent felonies like prostitution …

Faced With Overcrowded Prisons, Chicago Considers Ending Felony Arrests For Prostitution | ThinkProgress

Punishing prostitution as a felony, a serious crime, makes it difficult to protect prostitutes from rape, beatings and exploitation. It makes a profession that has successfully resisted all attempts to stamp it out an regulated mess where disease and other kinds of crime feature regularly.

It is probably wisest to even go further than Chicago, and make prostitution a ticket style offense like a traffic stop, removing imprisonment even in the county jail as an option.

It seems to me that we gain little by severely punishing prostitutes and can cut our criminal justice costs significantly by a more reasonable regulation of the field.

James Pilant

 

 

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“War on drugs” is a failure in many ways (via Eideard)

Generally speaking, I do not consider drugs, in this case an illegal activity, a business ethics problem. However the private prison system is a business ethics problem. I have come across on more than one occasion, situations in which the counties and congressional districts in which private prisons exist, have opposed liberalizing the drug laws away from imprisonment and toward other options for fear of losing jobs.

I would like to see a debate over what drug laws are proper that does not in some way spin around local employment at private prisons. That’s not how to make good decisions.

James Pilant

"War on drugs" is a failure in many ways In a step few politicians would take, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle…declared the nation’s decades-old war on drugs a failure… “Rather than invest in detaining people in the Cook County Jail at almost $150 a day . . . we need to invest in treatment, education and job-skills training. That’s the only way . . . we are going to reduce crime and stabilize our communities,” she said… “We all know that the war on drugs has failed to … Read More

via Eideard

“War on drugs” is a failure in many ways (via Eideard)

Generally speaking, I do not consider drugs, in this case an illegal activity, a business ethics problem. However the private prison system is a business ethics problem. I have come across on more than one occasion, situations in which the counties and congressional districts in which private prisons exist, have opposed liberalizing the drug laws away from imprisonment and toward other options for fear of losing jobs.

I would like to see a debate over what drug laws are proper that does not in some way spin around local employment at private prisons. That’s not how to make good decisions.

James Pilant

"War on drugs" is a failure in many ways In a step few politicians would take, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle…declared the nation’s decades-old war on drugs a failure… “Rather than invest in detaining people in the Cook County Jail at almost $150 a day . . . we need to invest in treatment, education and job-skills training. That’s the only way . . . we are going to reduce crime and stabilize our communities,” she said… “We all know that the war on drugs has failed to … Read More

via Eideard