The Rise Of America’s Prison Empire

1932 words - 8 pages

When envisioning a prison, one often conceptualizes a grisly scene of hardened rapists and murderers wandering aimlessly down the darkened halls of Alcatraz, as opposed to a pleasant facility catering to the needs of troubled souls. Prisons have long been a source of punishment for inmates in America and the debate continues as to whether or not an overhaul of the US prison system should occur. Such an overhaul would readjust the focuses of prison to rehabilitation and incarceration of inmates instead of the current focuses of punishment and incarceration. Altering the goal of the entire state and federal prison system for the purpose of rehabilitation is an unrealistic objective, however. Rehabilitation should not be the main purpose of prison because there are outlying factors that negatively affect the success of rehabilitation programs and such programs would be too costly for prisons currently struggling to accommodate additional inmate needs.
Throughout his novel, Texas Tough: The Rise of America’s Prison Empire, author and professor Robert Perkinson outlines the three current dominant purposes of prison. The first, punishment, is the act of disciplining offenders in an effort to prevent them from recommitting a particular crime. Harsh punishment encourages prisoners to behave because many will not want to face the consequences of further incarceration. While the purpose of punishment is often denounced, many do agree that prison should continue to be used as a means of protecting law-abiding citizens from violent offenders. The isolation of inmates, prison’s second purpose, exists to protect the public. Rehabilitation is currently the third purpose of prison. Rehabilitation is considered successful when a prisoner does not experience recidivism (the act of recommitting the crime he was imprisoned for) and successfully adapts to mainstream society.
While all three are considered prison’s goals, punishment is most heavily relied on and rehabilitation, when attempted, is often halfheartedly executed to uninterested participants. According to authors Gerald Melnick, et al. in their essay, “Treatment Process in Prison Therapeutic Communities: Motivation, Participation, and Outcome,” the lack of motivation an individual prisoner experiences regarding his success often contributes to his dropping out of an in prison rehabilitation program (634). Such programs are therefore futile because the inmates who would benefit most from the rehabilitation are often the most unmotivated and unwilling to participate.
If an inmate does fulfill the numerous participation requirements for completion of an in prison program, the chances of his continuing treatment are exponentially low. Prisoners often neglect to extend treatment through the use of after-care rehabilitation programs upon release from jail (Melnick, et al. 636). The benefits of rehabilitation are therefore lost because after-care facilities are designed to further reinforce critical...

Find Another Essay On The Rise of America’s Prison Empire

The Rise of Empire: British Imperialism

1407 words - 6 pages The word 'Empire’ which was derived from the Latin word 'imperium', when first used in the English language, meant independence. It was under the rule of King Henry VIII that England was called an Empire which affirmed its 'spiritual and temporal independence'. (1) Imperialism, on the other hand, means 'the rule of the Empire'. But this is a simplistic understanding of the term, devoid of its complex layers of meaning given to it by historical

The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire

1897 words - 8 pages The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire *Missing Works Cited* The City-state of Rome became a republic in 509 BC. Rome fought numerous battles to become what it was at its height. It all started with the Punic wars. After they won, there was no stopping them. By the first century BC, Rome controlled most of the known world. (Mahoney, 2001) With Augustus Caesar began the two centuries of the Pax Romana. During

The Rise and Fall of The Roman Empire

1235 words - 5 pages Power. Dominance. Strategy. One of the greatest and most predominant empires ever built that controlled and reined over much of the entire continent of Europe is known as the Roman Empire. The Romans were beyond the most tactical and strategic army, and obtained the most authoritative military control throughout ancient history. The Roman Empire was not only a militia of brute force and authority, but their political systems also were amongst

The Rise And Fall Of The Aztec Empire

590 words - 2 pages The Aztec Empire In Broken Spears: The Aztec Account of Conquest of Mexico, author Michael Leon- Portilla gives his readers a horrid account of the downfall of the Aztec empire by the Spaniards. The Aztecs occupied what we today call Mexico. They lived in what was known then as Tenotchtitlan which was their capitol. This part of the land was taken over by Hernando Cortes in 1521. The Aztec empire was a very forceful nation that was feared by all

The Benefits of America’s Lottery

1719 words - 7 pages George Washington, America’s very first president, used to participate in the lottery. Moses used a lottery to determine which of his flock would win a plot of land (Ugel 25). The lottery has been around for an exceedingly long time. In fact, according to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission, “The first recorded lottery to distribute prize money was held in 1466 in Bruges, now Belgium, for the announced purpose of providing assistance

From Conquerors to Conquered, The Rise and Fall of the Aztec Empire

2225 words - 9 pages agricultural system (Leon-Portilla xxviii).Of all of the nomadic tribes who wandered southward into Mexico, the Aztecs were one of the last. At first spurned and driven away by established tribes, the Aztecs persevered to develop an empire of immense wealth and power by the late fifteenth century. Due in large part to the accomplishments of their ruler Itzcoatl, the empire expanded to include millions of people from a host of different tribes, including

Rise and Fall of Napoleon Bonaparte`s Empire

763 words - 3 pages power. His empire stretched from France to the borders of Russia. He governed France and the Netherlands as an emperor. Spain`s, Italy`s, and the Confederation of the Rhine`s emperor`s followed napoleons policies. In Spain Napoleon made his brother, Joseph, king. Also Napoleon made Austria and Prussia allies to France. In 1812 Napoleon decided to invade Russia. Napoleon assembled an army of over 500,000 soldiers and in May he led his Grand Army

Hydraulic Fracturing: The Future of America’s Energy

1375 words - 6 pages shale they have drilled so far (Kaufman and Sidick). Hydraulic fracturing provides economic benefits that are necessary for America’s struggling economy in an environmentally friendly way. Despite popular belief, fracking is not devastating to the environment; in fact, it is a safe way to access a greener source of natural gas. By utilizing horizontal drilling, multiple wells can originate from 200-600+ acres of shale, making the process

The Flaws of Prison Labor

953 words - 4 pages The Flaws of Prison Labor The debate over prison labor has existed as long as the concept it’s self. Opponents claim that it exploits prisoners, takes away jobs from the general population, and puts people in danger by allowing convicts access to their personal information. While supporters of prison labor argue that it helps the economy as well as benefits prisoners. On this issue I stand on the side of the supporters. By having

The Importance of Prison Reform

1343 words - 5 pages that 60 percent of Americans are against social reform because they have made up their mind that once a crook, always a crook. This is flawed mainly because it seems to assume that showing people that what they've done is wrong will always accomplish something, that punishing those who commit crimes will deter others from following the same pattern. The problem with prison is that prisons are not a place of rehabilitation. There are people

The Privatization of Prison Healthcare

1955 words - 8 pages There are over 2.3 million persons within the” Prison Industrial Complex”. The “Prison Industrial Complex" is used to describe the overlapping interests of government and industry (Herzing, 2005). The interest of industry within the state prisons of Illinois has led to the selling of inmate healthcare rights to many private companies. The privatization of healthcare within the prison industrial complex is unconstitutional and perpetuates

Similar Essays

Rise Of The Roman Empire Essay

1218 words - 5 pages Rise of Rome      The legend of Roman Empire, the strongest empire lasted more than 1,000 years in regions of minor Asia, Northern Africa, Europe including Spain, Britain, german and Gaul, which now we call France, was not created in one single day. The stories of ancient gods, heroes, and myths are part of their splendid chronicle, they are both practical facts and fantasies. Much of what we know today about the

The Rise Of The Aztec Empire

1230 words - 5 pages The Aztecs were a nomadic, native American tribe that resided in the Valley of Mexico from the 1200s to the mid-1500s. After exploring most of the Valley of Mexico, they settled down and started farming in 1345. The Aztecs built a huge empire and were ahead of their time in some aspects. However, in 1519, a Spanish Conquistador named Hernando Cortes led a force of 300 men to Yucatan. This signified the beginning of the end of the Aztec empire

The Rise Of The Aztec Empire

2512 words - 10 pages The Aztec Empire of the 14th and 15th centuries was one of the most successful and powerful Mesoamerican kingdoms at that time. The community of people began in the middle of a lake and eventually became the capital of an empire. The Aztecs were comprised of multi ethnic and multi lingual individuals that lived in a large area that stretched from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf coast and housed over fifteen million people (Schmal). Their ability

Rise And Fall Of The Roman Empire

1094 words - 4 pages The Romans were on one of the greatest people of all. They had power, wealth, and even a half of the world. They built one of the strongest and vast empire that world has ever seen. They came from nothing to something awesome. It started of as a city and ended up being one of the greatest empire of all. This essay is going to focus on the Roman Empire from the rise to the fall and the government, architecture, mythology, Family Structure, and