Transformation In Prison, And How It Dehumanizes It's Inmates.

2223 words - 9 pages

Orignal Document Download Available At:"Today, while on the yard, all of a sudden we were made to get down. Then for no apparent reason, they brought about 30 guards on the yard, and made us strip down to nothing and get searched. In my opinion it is just another way to dehumanize us here. There were even female guards standing watching as we were completely naked. There is one certain lieutenant that likes to do that to us here. They found absolutely nothing on anyone. The only person that got handcuffed, and taken off, is one guy, while sitting down, tossed a couple of pebbles at some other inmates. That's how petty they got."- This happened on B yard., the letter is dated Nov. 22, 2002Penitentiary is a derivative from the word penitence, which is what was originally planned to be used in by all prison systems. But it seems that has been lost and forgotten within the past. Today's corrections systems do quite the opposite, making offenders worse, along with raising the recidivism rates. We need more then a new system, but a new way of thinking. "Reformation or rehabilitation is not something that can be imposed or forced, on another; i.e., it cannot be wrought in the individual offender by the imposition of external measures. When we seek to bring about rehabilitation in this manner, i.e., by imposing external measures on the offender, then we are simply treating the offender as an object rather than as an autonomous personality/being. When we proceed in that fashion we are operating in terms of behavior modification models which are merely techniques of manipulation and control; and, any technique based on an object to be changed rather than a human being to be accepted does little more than perpetuate that which it purports to remedy." With roughly forty percent of the world's prisoners incarcerated in the United States, we just may have to re-think are current systems.A step in the right direction with changing prisons and it's prisoners is by altering the way in which people look at them. When most of the population thinks of what a prisoner is, thoughts such as psychopath, murderer, evil, ect...come to mind. It is a way to make the "normal" citizen feel better and more secure about themselves. The individuals who come from backgrounds where positive regard, love, or even minimal acceptance is no where to be found, are the type of people in our prison systems. They are unable to understand and care about others, which has compromised their empathy allowing them to commit crimes against others. Raymond Corsini commented on his years of prison work. "I have seen murders in prison, seen executions, but worse [is] the slow, silent submission of people [who change] from being independent and alive to going out beaten and broken, not by violence, not by cruelty in the usual sense, but by slow erosion of unity of self by time, by routine, by following orders. It is very sad, the...

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