Prison rape


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zahc
May 16, 2005, 10:51 AM
I hear it all the time, people talking about prison rape as if it was normal and accepted part of the criminal justices system. I hear comments all the time, hear on the High Road even, about how someone is to be sent to prison where 'bubba will take care of him' in that way, or some similar sentiment.

Does it bother anyone else that prison rape, if it is as prevalent as it is made out to be (and I don't know if it is), is not taken as something that seriously needs to be prevented? I mean I have never seen a prison sentence that listed rape as part of the punishment. But all I keep hearing more comments that seem to approve of it or at least accept it.

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shooter58
May 16, 2005, 10:54 AM
I don't really worry about it. It kinda falls under the category of "If you can't do the time....don't do the crime" mode. I don't really have a lot of sympathy for crooks that get caught. I believe we have enough bleeding heart mentallities already.

dave3006
May 16, 2005, 11:04 AM
I have heard numerous Gunowners and "law and order" types giggle about prison rape. They assume only bad guys are in prison. They assume the system is on their side because they are one of the good guys.

Newsflash - someday the gov't may define you as the bad guy.

Knowing what all of us know about the complete corruption of our legal system and the randomness of our legal system, gunowners should be the first to speak up.

Make the crime fit the punishment without cruelty. Execute murderers after a speedy appeal. Make people pay restitution to their victims. Make the sentences real without time off for good behavior. Then, fully restore the rights of the released.

(I don't know anyone who has been raped in prison. I just hate injustice.)

boofus
May 16, 2005, 11:05 AM
What goes on in there is ok by me. After all, guns are banned in prison. So according to the grabbers it should be a paradise. Who am I to argue against paradise?

VARifleman
May 16, 2005, 11:06 AM
Do you really think that after being raped for a few years and raping others that they aren't going to become more hardened criminals than they already were? It's not like we can lock them all up for life, in which case, who cares if it happens, but we let them out after a couple of years of this and they have learned how to control people, how to disarm them, how to violently subdue them, etc. I believe that it's counter productive to let it go on. But the FBI doesn't give one ???? about it, afterall, they have the definition of "forcible rape" defined to exclude prison rape, well...rape of any male what-so-ever. :cuss:

Here it is LINK (http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/cius_02/html/web/offreported/02-nforciblerape04.html):

Forcible rape, as defined in the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program, is the carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will. Assaults or attempts to commit rape by force or threat of force are also included; however, statutory rape (without force) and other sex offenses are excluded.
Damn sexist pigs...I tell you, the white males are the most discriminated against group in this country... :cuss:

pax
May 16, 2005, 11:09 AM
Law & order types giggling about prison rape = disgusting.

But why do so many folks so easily assume that prisoners are "allowed" to rape each other?

You cannot leave the prisoners in 24 hour lockdown in solitary confinement.

If you do anything other than 24 hour locked down solitary, they'll find a way to beat on each other when you're not looking.

Oh, and VARifleman? Rape of anyone's rear end is called "sexual assault." It, too, is against the law.

pax

zahc
May 16, 2005, 11:11 AM
I don't really worry about it. It kinda falls under the category of "If you can't do the time....don't do the crime" mode. I don't really have a lot of sympathy for crooks that get caught.

I see this mentality a lot, but it doesn't compute. I can see that you don't mind harsher sentences for criminals, and I agree, but sentences are ostensibly handed out in proportion to the crime commited by a jury etc. Saying you don't care about a grossly arbitrary, disproportionate and uncontrolled modification of prison sentences seems really morally irresponsible to me.

Besides the simple fact that rape or the possibility of such as a part of a prison sentence does not enter officially into consideration in the law or the courtroom and as such is just a violation of due process and honesty.

I belive in justice, does that make me a bleeding heart mentality?

armoredman
May 16, 2005, 11:17 AM
pax has it closest to right. I have less than 30 officers to supervise over 800 inmates - how do I watch all of them 24/7? We do security checks every 30 minutes, more than the Fed mandated minimum. I have worked level 5 lockdown, and now level 4 high security. The level 3/2 yards have open dorms, where they all bunk in a long bay. All bays, cells, showers, etc, are directly observable from the control room. There is none of the famous "prison shower rape" in modern AZ prisons, due to the design. If we could get the funding, we could close places like Central, built in 1914, and open newer facilities. But with paying to house and care for 3000 inmates over bed space, and thousands of illegal aliens we can't get rid of, oh well. Besides, no one approves funding for prisons - we are out of sight, out of mind, when we do our jobs right, and lousy knuckle draggin' "guards" when something goes wrong.
We prosecute rape cases inside our wall with street charges, and all allegations ARE investigated - I have done paperwork on more than one. Allegations of officer abuse or condoning of such assaults is grounds for termination AND street charges being filed against the officer - I have seen that happen once.
Take a tour of your local prison sometime, as they do organize those sometimes. It might be an eye opener for ya! :rolleyes:

dev_null
May 16, 2005, 11:17 AM
I don't really worry about it. It kinda falls under the category of "If you can't do the time....don't do the crime" mode. I don't really have a lot of sympathy for crooks that get caught. I believe we have enough bleeding heart mentallities already.

Then we need to stop putting people in prison for consensual crimes and reserve prisons for true criminals. I've never heard a judge actually sentence someone convicted of buying a bag of weed (e.g.), to anal rape and death by AIDs, have you?

Sean Smith
May 16, 2005, 11:18 AM
I don't approve of prison rape at all. Wow, that seems so obvious, I can't believe I had to say it... "Hi, I'm Sean, and I think rape is bad. In related news, I like pretty girls, guns, and big dogs with cool personalities"

But I think we have to look at the underlying reason why people joke (hope?) that people sent to prison get raped. The reason is that there is a general feeling that people who commit heinous crimes have a nasty habit of getting off light in terms of punishment handed down by the courts, so the hope is that there is some other factor that makes the punishment fit the crime. This is pretty irrational, however; is there any reason to think that rapists are going to give extra punishment to the people who deserve it? Counting on the scum you despise the most to dispense "extra justice" in a fair and rational way is self-evidently a bad "system."

I believe that prison rapists should be treated like rapists in the outside world should be (but aren't) treated, i.e. tried and promptly executed if found guilty. But since people raping children don't get executed, the odds that prison rapists will get dealt with in any meaningful manner seems small.

molonlabe
May 16, 2005, 11:45 AM
I belive in justice, does that make me a bleeding heart mentality?

No, That just make you a High Roader, I don't know about anyone else. Sick positions to take.

jefnvk
May 16, 2005, 11:50 AM
I don't know how prevalent it is. I don't care to be the guniea pig to find out, either. I do know there is an anti-prison rape activist group out there, caught them on CNN or Fox News one day.

swampsniper
May 16, 2005, 12:01 PM
I have a friend that was raped in prison.
He heard His wife scream in the night, woke up and found a creep coming at Him with a pick handle. He shot the SOB. That part was OK, but then, He panicked, and shot the perp again, while the perp was on the floor. He drew a jury of urban liberals, and a 10 year sentence.
He never deserved prison, for a minute.

VARifleman
May 16, 2005, 12:15 PM
Oh, and VARifleman? Rape of anyone's rear end is called "sexual assault." It, too, is against the law.
Yes, I'm aware, however, since the fbi aren't the ones charging people with rape, I don't see where you got that I was saying that it was legal... :rolleyes:

They use that in runing statistics and all. If you had followed the link, you would have realized that.

boofus
May 16, 2005, 12:57 PM
I have a friend that was raped in prison.
He heard His wife scream in the night, woke up and found a creep coming at Him with a pick handle. He shot the SOB. That part was OK, but then, He panicked, and shot the perp again, while the perp was on the floor. He drew a jury of urban liberals, and a 10 year sentence.
He never deserved prison, for a minute.


Sounds like more states need Castle Doctrine or Stand Your Ground laws.

Preacherman
May 16, 2005, 12:57 PM
Speaking as a chaplain in the Federal prison system, I can assure you that the problem is taken very seriously indeed. However, as Armoredman has pointed out, we can't supervise all of our inmates all of the time. When you have about 1,500 high-security inmates in a twelve-unit prison, two to a cell, you're going to have cases where some inmates will hit on others - up to and including rape. We take every possible precaution to protect inmates, and prosecute vigorously whenever we find an incident of rape, but we can't protect everybody.

Unfortunately, all of these guys locked up in there are predators - and if they can't have innocent citizens to prey on, they're going to prey on each other, or act up in other ways. I've had to lock inmates up in solitary for masturbating in my chapel, or exposing themselves to our secretary, or stuff like that... they're nasty brutes in many ways, and being politically correct about them won't change that.

Fletchette
May 16, 2005, 02:22 PM
Preacherman,

With all due respect, it doesn't sound like you are following th Golden Rule - treat others as you would have them treat you. We are all sinners, but it is our responsibility to strive to be better.

Yes, the vast majority of the prison population may be incorrigible, but there are more than a few who do not deserve to be there. Either they are wrongly convicted (note recent DNA incidents proving innocence) or they are convicted of "crimes" that should not be crimes at all (like the above example of a startled home owner defending his wife and shooting the intruder a second time in the heat of the moment).

If we actually intend to reform criminals into law-abiding citizens then we need to lead by example. A prison culture that accepts rape in prison will spill out onto the streets when the inmates are let out.

As for the true criminals (admittedly the majority of the prison populace), they have rights too. A car thief should do time, but does not deserve to be raped.

Rape is never justifiable.

jnojr
May 16, 2005, 03:16 PM
Rape is not "accepted" in jails or prisons. It's just impossible to prevent 100% of the time. It's also actually very rare, from what I'm told.

In California, at least, rape in a prison is a felony. Even consensual sex, in prison, is a misdemeanor.

20cows
May 16, 2005, 03:20 PM
Rape is never justifiable

He wasn't justifying it, just acknowledging the fact that it happens, and though you try, you can't stop it. Like any other crime, all you can do is slow it down (make it more difficult to accomplish) and punish those you catch doing it.

Shane333
May 16, 2005, 03:34 PM
I've never done anything that would get me sent to prison.

If, for some freak reason, I was unjustly sent there, I would request solitary confinement. I don't care if they have to stick me in some isolated cell in the basement with nothing more than scriptures to keep me company for a year or ten. I'd prefer that to being exposed to the general prison population.

dave3006
May 16, 2005, 03:58 PM
Shane, you are a gunowner. Someday that will be enough. Your request for solitary ought to give them a good chuckle.

Noctem
May 16, 2005, 04:31 PM
:fire: rape is rape. it is what it is and it cant be anything else. following that, rape is wrong in all its forms, angles, methods and so on. if you dont want someone inside your body with anything whatsoever, penis, stick, finger, tounge etc, and they are inside your body then that is wrong, regardless of SEX, race, LOCATION, (that means in or out of prison) and any other noun you can think of. This is not under any circumstances a justifiable or even condonable (sp) action. I despise rape and rapists, even if the victim was a male in prison. Dont give me a whole bunch of crap about why the rapists did it cause whatever the reason, none are good or sound enough to let an innocent be drawn into that messed up persons mind and actions. i could go on and on as im sure we all could. :fire:

Mr. James
May 16, 2005, 04:43 PM
There can be no justification for anything as manifestly evil as rape. End of story. Not even the most hardened criminal "deserves" to be raped.

We can argue for days, pro and con, about the justice of judicially-ordered state-sanctioned homicide, and I'm sure we've all heard of defendants who "just needed killin'," but to suggest there can be any element of justice in anything as random and predatory as forcible rape is, frankly, sick.

NavajoNPaleFace
May 16, 2005, 06:23 PM
submitted by Flechette:

"Preacherman,

With all due respect, it doesn't sound like you are following th Golden Rule - treat others as you would have them treat you. We are all sinners, but it is our responsibility to strive to be better.

Yes, the vast majority of the prison population may be incorrigible, but there are more than a few who do not deserve to be there. Either they are wrongly convicted (note recent DNA incidents proving innocence) or they are convicted of "crimes" that should not be crimes at all (like the above example of a startled home owner defending his wife and shooting the intruder a second time in the heat of the moment).

If we actually intend to reform criminals into law-abiding citizens then we need to lead by example. A prison culture that accepts rape in prison will spill out onto the streets when the inmates are let out."

Flechette, although I respectfully accept your ideas that there are, indeed, some innocent people caught up in the justice system to chastize Preacherman, or any other person working in the cirminal justice system, is insensitve.

None of the 'insiders' had anything to do with the inmate's original crime, the police investigation(s), the filing of charges by the Prosecuting Attorney, the lack of competent defense counsel, the decisions and finding of a jury, and the sentencing Judge.

Those working the jails and prisons are simply trustees of those inmates and applicable laws and not those who decided the fates of those incarcerated.


And, lest we not forget that at latest scientific and education guesses put less than 1/2 of one percent of ALL (city, county state, federal and military) inmates are completely innocent (roughly 1 in 200).

No judicial system is, or ever will be, totally flawless or totally equitable. Human frailness prohibits a perfect record here, LOL.

Anyway, when Preacherman eluded to inmates being predatory he is absolutely right. Not all....but surely the vast majority are. After all, the vast majority (and ALL crimes in many thoughts) of crimes committed on the streets involves victims and the term 'victims' clearly say that someone had to victimize them). 'Nuf said on that one.

Shane333
May 16, 2005, 06:36 PM
Dave3006,

If gun ownership is all it's going to take to get a man thrown in prison, I have no intention of going. I'm not some macho super commando guy, but I have no intention of going peacefully if they're going to come for me when all I've done is honor the Constitution.

Cool Hand Luke 22:36
May 16, 2005, 08:07 PM
Knowing what all of us know about the complete corruption of our legal system and the randomness of our legal system, gunowners should be the first to speak up.

Speak for yourself. I don't hold with that opinion at all.

The US justice system provides more protection for the innocent, and better conditions of incarceration, than the vast majority of other nations.

Standing Wolf
May 16, 2005, 08:29 PM
...all of these guys locked up in there are predators - and if they can't have innocent citizens to prey on, they're going to prey on each other, or act up in other ways.

Preacherman speaks the truth.

I was a prison guard for five months in 1980. The prison supposedly took action against rapists; then again, many the guards were breaking lots of rules, and weren't, in fact, more than half a notch above some of the inmates.

There's never any jutification for a.) rape, or b.) turning a blind eye to it.

justice4all
May 16, 2005, 08:46 PM
I have a friend that was raped in prison.
He heard His wife scream in the night, woke up and found a creep coming at Him with a pick handle. He shot the SOB. That part was OK, but then, He panicked, and shot the perp again, while the perp was on the floor. He drew a jury of urban liberals, and a 10 year sentence.
He never deserved prison, for a minute.

Just one more reason why I live in Colorado.

Hawkmoon
May 16, 2005, 09:37 PM
Does it bother anyone else that prison rape, if it is as prevalent as it is made out to be (and I don't know if it is), is not taken as something that seriously needs to be prevented?
Yes

thorn726
May 16, 2005, 10:14 PM
from what i hear, it is NOT quite as bad as we often hear, but it sure does happen.

WHAT DOES HAPPEN= fights, stealing, constant beatings.

a friend of mine, smaller guy, idiot, spent 2 years in pen= one of the few who learned his lesson, he really got back on track-

how bad was it? "well, after the first FOUR MONTHs i wasn't being beaten down every day"

yeah, pretty bad. he basically had to fight multiple adversaries constantly, and the COs do little to stop it.

i really think prisons at this point have gone beyond cruel and unusual to downright torture, essentially pure physical and mental cruelty for the most part.

Unless of course, you are a HUGE hardcore criminal/.
that's the bigger problem. half the prisoners are enjoying the heck out of being the "tough guy" in prison.
so some end up tortured, others end up turning harder, very very few are rehabilitated in any sense of the word.

thorn726
May 16, 2005, 10:17 PM
...all of these guys locked up in there are predators - and if they can't have innocent citizens to prey on, they're going to prey on each other, or act up in other ways.


this is so far from true. sure, a good portion of them are, but that's the problem.
those guys you mention are all you hear about.

there are tons of "prey" in there also, idiots who just screwed up, mostly drug addicts, plenty of people who well deserve to be taken off the streets (drunk drivers come to mind), but do they desreve to be beaten daily???
is that American???

AS USUAL= the 2nd Amendment is the only one that really stands on The High Road

Preacherman
May 16, 2005, 11:02 PM
Thorn, I'm afraid you're wrong. Criminals get to be criminals by preying on others. Some do it at a distance, through crimes like fraud, ID theft, and other so-called "white-collar" crimes. Some do it up close and personal, through crimes of violence, theft, burglary, etc. However, by definition, all of them - I repeat, ALL of them - are basically preying on others. They've now been sentenced to a term in jail for their crimes, and are locked up with all the other predators. Some of them are more predatory than others.

There are very few people locked up by mistake - I'd reckon less than 1% overall. This is still a troubling number of people: with over 2 million in the US penal system at the moment, even half-a-percent would mean that there are some 10,000 innocent persons locked up with the guilty. We do our very best to safeguard the health and safety of all our inmates, the good and the bad: and I think that on the whole, we do a pretty darn good job. We didn't put any of them there, but we have to keep them there - innocent or guilty.

However, if you lock up hundreds and hundreds of predators within spitting distance of each other, you are inevitably going to have a problem with increased predation. It's the nature of the beast. You have three choices:

1. Become a survivor, by being too dangerous for a would-be predator to tackle (which can include banding together with others for mutual defence);

2. Become a serious predator yourself, and thus be accepted by the other "top dogs" (and perhaps join one of their gangs);

3. Become a victim.

There are no other choices in this environment... so take your pick. Innocent or guilty, those are your options.

El Rojo
May 16, 2005, 11:19 PM
I was a teacher at a federal low and minimum security facility for nearly three years. I don't recall more than one case of a sexual assault in our two facilities. The low and minimum federal levels are pretty laid back. Unless you are a child molestor or a snitch, there is really little reason for you to request protective custody (PC). Being stuck in the SHU (special housing unit, the hole) is not fun because you can't watch TV, go to the store, play any number of recreational sports, work in the hobby shop, make clay sculptures, gamble with your friends, or use the law library in person.

There were plenty of "females" (its a male prison, but they think they are a girls) in our facility that were more than willing to perform services for you that you didn't need to go about raping people. Also, we had a fair number of female staff that were willing to give it up unfortunately.

Prison is a very interesting place. I know we had it pretty good where I was at, nothing like our PRK state system. I could see being concerned in one of those places. However on the federal side, that is some easy time that any one of us here wouldn't have much trouble doing. In fact, if weren't a felony, it would almost be worth it to have a year or two off of having responsibilties of the real world. Look no further than Martha Stewart for evidence of this.

As far as condoning rape? It never happened where I was at. I knew exactly who the child molestors and rapists were and as tempting as it was to drop their cover, we followed the rules and did not. If inmates were harrasing other inmates, you report it and stop it. Were all of the staff good people and did the right thing? No. The vast majority did though.

Fletchette
May 16, 2005, 11:50 PM
However, by definition, all of them - I repeat, ALL of them - are basically preying on others.

There are plenty of people in prison right now because they put the wrong spring in their shotgun. How did they prey on other people?

When people joke about "going to prison and meeting Bubba" they are condoning the idea that rape is normal, and therefore accepted, in prison. This is wrong in so many ways, some of which I listed before. Yet consider one more reason that this is a bad thing...

Why did people cower and not rebel against Saddam Hussain? Ans- they were scared out of thier minds of going to prison and being raped and tortured. In Iraq, it was the guards that would do such things. In the U.S., the guards sometimes do it, but it is generally accepted that other inmates will (hence the Bubba jokes). The effect is the same. People are scared out of their minds to oppose the government for fear of being sent to prison and being raped and tortured. This is inhehently unAmerican.

People, all people, even criminals, have rights. Violating those rights hurts society as well as the immediate victim.

For all those inclined to look the other way on this issue because "prisoners are bad", I ask you this. What would you do if the government sent you a letter telling you to turn in your gun. Would you risk going to prison?

jefnvk
May 17, 2005, 12:25 AM
There are plenty of people in prison right now because they put the wrong spring in their shotgun.

Show me some examples. I don't see how springs would send you to prison, anyways.

Why did people cower and not rebel against Saddam Hussain? Ans- they were scared out of thier minds of going to prison and being raped and tortured.

I don't think it was rape that was on their minds, but of disappearing and never being heard from again.

People are scared out of their minds to oppose the government for fear of being sent to prison and being raped and tortured

People should be scared out of their mind to go to prison. But is the average person where I live scared to oppose the gov't? Absolutely not.

Fletchette
May 17, 2005, 12:34 AM
Show me some examples. I don't see how springs would send you to prison, anyways.

I guess you haven't been paying attention to our favorite Federal agency lately. The infamous "9 piece gun" rule is a good example. If you have 9 American made parts on an otherwise imported gun, it is ok. If only 8, you have committed a felony. Meet Bubba.

I don't think it was rape that was on their minds, but of disappearing and never being heard from again.

Funny you have mentioned this. Ask Hose Pedia if this is happening in the U.S.

People should be scared out of their mind to go to prison. But is the average person where I live scared to oppose the gov't? Absolutely not.

So the average person where you live would not register/forfeit their firearms and risk going to prison (and meeting Bubba)? Brave neighborhood.

rock jock
May 17, 2005, 12:59 AM
All rapists should be put to death, in prison and out.

jefnvk
May 17, 2005, 01:29 AM
I guess you haven't been paying attention to our favorite Federal agency lately. The infamous "9 piece gun" rule is a good example. If you have 9 American made parts on an otherwise imported gun, it is ok. If only 8, you have committed a felony. Meet Bubba.

Actually, it is 10 or less foreign parts, if the gun is in an unimportable configuration that will get you in trouble. It is how many foreign parts that matter, not how many American parts.

And seeing how springs aren't on that list, my original statement stands.

Even with that law, I haven't heard of anyone being prosecuted. If you have any ccases, I'd like to know.

So the average person where you live would not register/forfeit their firearms and risk going to prison (and meeting Bubba)? Brave neighborhood.

No, the average person I know isn't thinking 'Im not gonna do this, because I might meet bubba'

And if cops ever started going door to door, I think a lot of people would have more serious charges brought against them than failure to give up guns.

Ask Hose Pedia if this is happening in the U.S.
I don't know who he is, and I don't know if I really care who he is. Most people (at least I would think) are not trying to stay out of jail because they might be raped. They stay out because jail is simply somewhere you don't want to be.

El Rojo
May 17, 2005, 01:34 AM
There are plenty of people in prison right now because they put the wrong spring in their shotgun. How did they prey on other people?Plenty eh? How many? I got an idea for you, it doesn't matter how many; don't put the wrong spring in your shotgun and you won't go to prison. If you don't like that rule, then lets keep fighting to change it, but excuse me if I don't have a lot of sympathy for federal inmates. If I get busted on some minor gun charge and I have to go to prison, I don't expect any sympathy out of you either. I know the laws and if I choose to ignore them as a means of civil disobedience, then I also accept responsibility for getting caught.

Until the law changes, those are the rules. Break 'em and down river you might go. Anyone doing federal time for minor gun charges could be in much worse situations and they won't get much sympathy out of me. Sorry. I spent three years in a federal prison and they don't have it too rough. The worst part is just being behind a fence and not getting laid. It is a mental game more than a physical game. They can handle it.

Dave McCracken
May 17, 2005, 10:18 AM
I'm retired from the MD system. I worked at both medium and max facilities.

All rape is about power and aggression. In prison, lots of people without any power and plenty of aggression are locked up in close proximity to others. Prison rape is a power trip more than sex. So's rape outside the system.

Rape happened at the institutions I worked at. More common was consensual sex. When two inmates were found while having sex, the first question that was asked was if force was involved. Both were also examined for any signs of a struggle.

Some prison rapists were well known to us, others maintained a low profile and picked their victims carefully. We watched the ones we knew, and made certain that their cell partners(Most MD cells are for two inmates) were not easy prey.

Dorms occur in prisons, my last institution had three in what had been the gym. One was quite large with over 100 inmates. Gang activity was monitored, but chronic short staffing meant some stuff went on unknown to us. Some gangs commit rapes and beatings just to make themselves look powerful. Advertising, as it were.

Rape is vile,wherever it happens and regardless of the personal worth of the victim. COs joke about "Bubba's B!tch" but all but the most stupid know that allowing rape leads to much trouble.

Oleg Volk
May 17, 2005, 10:53 AM
If I get busted on some minor gun charge and I have to go to prison, I don't expect any sympathy out of you either.

Let me give ou an example of a "minor gun charge": imagine a Mak90 receiver. Now count the pins on the side. A certain number is legal, one more pin, even without any select fire control parts, is apparently a felony. At least that was the explanation I got from a guy who manufactures MGs. Not having seen many AKMS receivers, how was the buyer to know he was committing a felony (possession of an unregistered machine gun)? "Unintended Consequences" wasn't that far off in describing the arbitrary and insance nature of gun laws.

TallPine
May 17, 2005, 11:16 AM
Even with that law, I haven't heard of anyone being prosecuted.
Amazing logic .... :rolleyes:

:(

CAS700850
May 17, 2005, 11:20 AM
First, as I am often in a position to argue, a crime is still a crime, even if the victim of that crime is, himself, a criminal. A murderer is no less guilty if his victim was a thief, a drug dealer, or even a fellow murderer. As for rape, it is still both criminal and wrong even if the "victim" is a convict serving time in a penetentiary.

So, why aren't more prison rapes prosecuted? Evidence. You need evidence to prosecute any crime. Rape is especially difficult, as you must prove the absence of consent, in addition to the sexual acts. In the prison setting, witnesses are difficult to find, out of a valid concern for their own safety. Victims often don't report, for fear of something worse the next time. Or, sometimes, they don't report until later, after the physical evidence has been damaged or lost.

Now, as for the corruption and randomness of the criminal justice system, I can say that for 10 years, I have been a prosecuting attorney. And, if the system is as corrupt as some people say it is, well I feel cheated, because I haven't gotten anything more than a paycheck every two weeks, some fringe benefits, and about 2500 rounds of training/qualifying/duty ammo. WHERE"S MY BRIBE MONEY? :neener:

Fletchette
May 17, 2005, 02:05 PM
I know the laws and if I choose to ignore them as a means of civil disobedience, then I also accept responsibility for getting caught.

It is very doubtful that you know the laws. Federal laws today are commonly several pages long - each. Even the members of Congress do not read them.

Until the law changes, those are the rules. Break 'em and down river you might go. Anyone doing federal time for minor gun charges could be in much worse situations and they won't get much sympathy out of me.

Well, you are entitled to your opinion. However, I must point out that we, as a nation, were very critical of the German populace for this exact logic.

Fletchette
May 17, 2005, 02:09 PM
People should be scared out of their mind to go to prison.

I absolutely disagree. People in a just, sovereign government will obey the law because they believe in it. People in a dictatorship obey the law (even unjust ones) because they are afraid.

Allowing prison rape is one of the many tools of a dictatorship rising to power.

pcf
May 17, 2005, 02:52 PM
Going to prison is not that hard. You don't have to be a hardened criminal, or even commit a crime.

Shoot someone in self defense, can't make bail, trial in 4 months, go to Prison.

Bail hearing isn't for 48 hours, jail's full, room in nearby prison, guess where you go?

I know I'm not the only one here that does not have $25,000 in reserve for bail money. Putting together bail money can take weeks.

jefnvk
May 17, 2005, 03:50 PM
My point is, that the rape isn't the reason I (and most people I know) don't want to go to prison. Even if no one got raped in prison, I still wouldn't want to go.

Amazing logic ....

I said that, because he stated that there were plenty of people in prison due to them putting on the wrong spring. I asked him to show me one case where that was why they were in prison. He made the accusation, it is up to him to prove it.

TallPine
May 17, 2005, 04:20 PM
jefnvk: but of course the law is still there, just waiting to be used against somebody.

And since it is the "law" then anyone breaking it even unintentionally is automatically a rotten person and deserving of punishment

10shooter
May 17, 2005, 05:13 PM
I think this thread is about like talking about how bad alien abductions are. Yes its bad and we all hear about it but its still rare. Really where do you here about all these rapes; TV, movies the same ones that talk about all the machine guns on the streets. I have 11+ years of law enforcement, incuding the county jail which has an average population of nearly 4,000. I know of 2 jail rapes and both were prosecuted. Yes it happens, yes its rare, yes its prosecuted, yes some fall in love and date during and after prison.

cracked butt
May 17, 2005, 05:44 PM
I feel pretty terrible about the whole situation, in fact I'll probably squirm in bed all night without sleep with the problem gnawing at me.
Here we have poor johnny who is in prison probably because he wasn't held enough as a child, had poor social skills, and had no choice but to make a few bad decisions while an adult. Johnny might have known that he would end up in prison for doing things like carjacking, armed robbery, dealing drugs, molesting children, or raping women, but he had no idea that prison could be such a hard unforgiving place. I think we can blame the media for always portraying prison as a summer camp-like setting and making johnny think that prison would be a place where everyone laughs, holds hands, and sings "its a small world." I'll go as far as to blame myself as I spend a great deal of my time working, paying taxes, taking care of my family, and yes, obeying laws instead of spending my time and money teaching the disadvantaged that prison is not a nice place. Maybe I'm just a bad and uncaring person who doesn't think raping, stealing, and murdering are things that I should be do.

El Rojo
May 17, 2005, 06:16 PM
It is very doubtful that you know the laws. Federal laws today are commonly several pages long - each.I sure do know firearms laws. If I want to buy firearms, I know the laws. I hang out at *gasp* firearms discussion boards and we talk about the laws. I know the laws. And actually, I don't need to know as many laws as some of you because the State of California protects me from your confusing federal firearms laws. Put too many springs in an AK-47? well we can't have Ak-47s, so I don't have to worry about it. :neener:

Again, sure there are a lot of laws, but if you are going to buy guns, you might want to figure them out. Again, until we change the laws, we have to deal with them. That is just the way it goes.

However, I must point out that we, as a nation, were very critical of the German populace for this exact logic.Are you sure about that? If I recall correctly we weren't happy with the Germans because they were slaughtering young, old, women, children, men, everyone who was not pure blood. And because the Germans turned a blind eye to the MURDER of these people, we weren't too happy about it. If you want to equate someone doing a couple years in prison for putting together an illegal gun and the horrible injustice that caused the torture and murder of 6 million Jews and other undesirables, I guess you can do that. I just am not going to buy it.

I fully understand the consequences of breaking federal or state gun laws. As a result, I try and make myself knowledgable about these laws and stay out of trouble. If I do get in trouble, that is my fault. I am not a victim of this society.

mercedesrules
May 17, 2005, 06:30 PM
Ask Hose Pedia if this is happening in the U.S.


I don't know who he is, and I don't know if I really care who he is.

"Jose Padilla" (http://www.fff.org/comment/com0503a.asp) ;)

Barbara
May 17, 2005, 06:36 PM
http://www.spr.org/

I wonder how many of you committed crimes in your younger days that could have gotten you a prison sentence.

Elmer
May 17, 2005, 06:51 PM
Interesting topic, one which I've thought about before. It angers me that our prisons are so out of control that anyone is hurt, guard or inmate.

If a car thief or burglar wants to do his time, and obey the rules, society should let him do it safely. Letting the predators do what they want isn't what I expect from our prisons.

And with my background in law enforcement, I'm hardly a liberal......

Tierhog
May 17, 2005, 06:54 PM
People go to prison AS punishment, not FOR punishment. I don't care why he is in prison, that was decided in court, I have a responsibility to the people of the state to ensure that the inmate does his sentence safely, humanely and in accordance to the law. I do not have the right to "look the other way" on serious infractions. I am required to act. Should an inmate report a rape to me then that inmate is then treated as a victim of a crime. Saying that an inmate "deserves what he got" is the same as saying "she should not dress that way".

Fletchette
May 17, 2005, 11:00 PM
Are you sure about that? If I recall correctly we weren't happy with the Germans because they were slaughtering young, old, women, children, men, everyone who was not pure blood. And because the Germans turned a blind eye to the MURDER of these people, we weren't too happy about it. If you want to equate someone doing a couple years in prison for putting together an illegal gun and the horrible injustice that caused the torture and murder of 6 million Jews and other undesirables, I guess you can do that. I just am not going to buy it.

Well, I do think that turning a blind eye to rape, and torture (by beatings and so forth) is equivical to turning a blind eye to murder.

I guess I do not see how rape, torture and murder by guys wearing swastikas is "bad", but rape, torture and murder by criminals is accepted.

We do have a responsibility to make sure the prisons are safe. A civilized prison system is one of the things that seperates a civilized society from a barbarous one.

El Rojo
May 18, 2005, 01:32 AM
Well, I do think that turning a blind eye to rape, and torture (by beatings and so forth) is equivical to turning a blind eye to murder.Ooops. I got off on the tanget of people whining about law abiding gun owners putting too many springs in a gun and going to prison. I was talking about getting busted for minor gun charges and going to prison. That I don't have a lot of sympathy for. You thought I was talking about rape in prison. Not so. In fact, I stated that federal low and minimum security prisons are some pretty easy time and the guys there don't seem to worried about being raped. They are more worried about what they are having in the chow hall that day and what tournaments are going on over the weekend for them.

I guess I do not see how rape, torture and murder by guys wearing swastikas is "bad", but rape, torture and murder by criminals is accepted.Again go back and read my post. I was talking about minor gun charges, not raping people.

Fletchette
May 18, 2005, 09:22 PM
Fair enough. I misunderstood.

thorn726
May 19, 2005, 07:00 AM
Thorn, I'm afraid you're wrong. Criminals get to be criminals by preying on others. Some do it at a distance, through crimes like fraud, ID theft, and other so-called "white-collar" crimes. Some do it up close and personal, through crimes of violence, theft, burglary, etc. However, by definition, all of them - I repeat, ALL of them - are basically preying on others. They've now been sentenced to a term in jail for their crimes, and are locked up with all the other predators. Some of them are more predatory than others.

please!!! i mean first off i do hear you, thieves, white collar, etc, do all boil down to preying on others- but what about drug addicts?
drug dealers it is debatable also- some drugs/ types of dealers may be considedered predators , some of us might say they are just business men
holding certain laws in contempt.

i DEFINITEly hear you about VERY VERY few people make it past jail (or even to jail), into Prison who are not guilty., i bet less than .05%.

i wasnt saying that at all, but i am against most of the drug laws, and although i hate people that are drunk drivers, i would see the fouth time drunk driver who gets four years in the pen as a SEriuos addict with problems, not a "predator".

the thing is the horrible sexual violent predator type= we just pull them out of our society and put them into a perfect one for them-
so that is cool with you? give the predator what he wants as long as the general pop doesnt have to deal with him?
i think that is the bigger problem, the number of people who end up enjoying the prison life

i will never think that constant fear, harrassment, beatings, and rape are acceptable under our constitution, or under my own personal beliefs.

taking dangerous people out of society is one thing.

Langenator
May 19, 2005, 07:11 AM
Oh, and VARifleman? Rape of anyone's rear end is called "sexual assault." It, too, is against the law.

Actually, I think it's called 'forcible sodomy.' At least that's what the UCMJ calls it.

Here's another idea to reduce the prison population, besides doing away with Prohibition II-the Narcotics Edition. Bring back coporal punishment. Use it for property crimes. Criminal makes restitution, gets a flogging (public, of course) and is released.

Of course, our idiot courts would find that cruel and unusual, despite that fact that such things were done in this country up until the end of the91th century and were not considered cruel and unusual when the 6th Amendment was written.

armoredman
May 19, 2005, 12:10 PM
In the U.S., the guards sometimes do it,
Flechette, not in my prison, not on my watch. Don't accuse people of something you have no clue about.
Thorn, I have looked through the records of many inmates - not once have I seen anyone in one a simple drug charge alone. Everyone had a violent crime tied to it, armed robbery, assault, murder, etc. I have yet to find the mythical "drug offender" in any of the institutions I have worked.
Well, I do think that turning a blind eye to rape, and torture (by beatings and so forth) is equivical to turning a blind eye to murder. ...We do have a responsibility to make sure the prisons are safe. A civilized prison system is one of the things that seperates a civilized society from a barbarous one.

You didn't read a word I wrote, did you? We cannot be everywhere, no more than the cop on the street can be everywhere! It can't happen, unless YOU want to fund single cell total lockdown 24/7 for ALL population inmates! If YOU want it that way, than YOU fork the cash, because nobody else is! If you believe our prisons are so horrible, then what are YOU doing about it? Have you ever been inside a prison? Near one? In the same city? Don't know what you're talking about? Right.
People in a just, sovereign government will obey the law because they believe in it. Dreamland. Pie in the sky dreamland. As long as there is greed, hatred, prejudice, all the comman emotions of man, there will be crime, and a need for punishment. Any thoughts otherwise is either dreamland or the product of medication.
Allowing prison rape is one of the many tools of a dictatorship rising to power. Allowing crime? What?!?!?! You cannot seriously believe what you wrote! We all got handouts from BOP and DOC stating, "Let Bubba get Little Johnny right after count time, as it terrorizes these innocent victims of our tyranny!"?
It is very doubtful that you know the laws. It is very doubtful you know what you are talking about, either.
Lastly, your answer to Preacherman,
With all due respect, it doesn't sound like you are following th Golden Rule - treat others as you would have them treat you. We are all sinners, but it is our responsibility to strive to be better. I am better than a baby raping child murderer. No question about it. I understand the Goldn Rule, and I also know what a hostage is. I have no intention to be one. I lead my shift by example. And allowing inmates to flout rules, put in place for a reason, is unacceptable.

Yes, the vast majority of the prison population may be incorrigible, but there are more than a few who do not deserve to be there. Either they are wrongly convicted (note recent DNA incidents proving innocence) or they are convicted of "crimes" that should not be crimes at all (like the above example of a startled home owner defending his wife and shooting the intruder a second time in the heat of the moment). Find them and defend them. Be a lawyer. Prove this statement.

If we actually intend to reform criminals into law-abiding citizens then we need to lead by example. A prison culture that accepts rape in prison will spill out onto the streets when the inmates are let out. It is NOT accepted, any more than it is in society. I repeat, unless you want to be taxed to provide for 24/7 solitary lockdown you cannot have this. Then, if you do enforce solitary lockdown, some programs might have to be cut, the ones that help them return to the street as productive citizens? Like our mandatory GED, work programs, Central Arizona College classes, Mind Over Mood, Cage Your Rage, Alcoholics Annon, Sexaholics annon, etc, no problem? Do you want inmates released who will change, or caged animals? You cannot have it both ways, and until you step foot inside the walls, you will NOT know.
Rant off, I apologise, Oleg, but for me it's just like you guys watching firearms handling on TV - drives you nuts becuase you know what they're doing wrong....

Fletchette
May 19, 2005, 11:36 PM
Armoredman,

It is clear that I struck a nerve with you, so let me sincerely say that it was not my intent to anger you. That said, I do feel compelled to respond.

Without going point by point, I do not think that I do not have a right to express my opinion about this simply because I have not been a prison guard for 20 years (or have been a convict, either). It is sort of like the people who say that a citizen should not have an opinion on whether or not we should go to war if that citizen was never in the armed services - we are the voters, the "People" mentioned in the "We, the people" part of who this government is suppossed to be comprised of. So therefore, non-prison guards have every right to have an opinon on this.

For me, I have a good friend (15 years) who is a prison guard. I also had a friend whose brother was a convict in Texas, despite his committing a crime in Colorado. Without going into detail- prison rape does happen. More often than a lot of people want to admit it. So often, in fact, that people make jokes about it.

In the political sense, yes, I do think it is used as a tool. You may have never received an explicit memo saying so, but I do think that the powers in charge do not mind, and in fact foster the environment for, prison rape to happen. The fact that this does happen makes many potential adversaries think twice about doing anything remotely close to breaking the law - and no, that isn't right. The threat of an unjust punishment is not how good government is suppossed to work.

As an example of what I am talking about: Catholic nuns who practice civil disobedience in order to express their sincere opposition to nuclear weapons. I do not share their beliefs...but they certainly do not deserve to be raped in prison if they serve out their sentence.

Another example: bloggers that are openly defying McCain-Feingold and posting thier thoughts on their webpages. Technically, they are breaking Federal law (a very bad law, as a matter of fact). If any one of these people has to do a day in jail they do not deserve to be raped.

My point is, rape is never justified. Not even for "real" criminals. The cavalier attitude expressed by many members of law enforcement is directly contributing to the perception that rape is accepted in prison. Am I advocating a super-cushy prison system where no one ever gets their feelings hurt? No, I understand that nothing is perfect. Just like in society outside of prison I understand that we will never have a crime-free society and therefore we should instead seek to minimize crime. The right to keep and bear arms is a big part of the effort to minimize crime. Those that believe that a perfect crime-free society can exist seek to eliminate guns.

Inside prison, citizens' rights to keep and bear arms are justly repressed. That means that we, as a society, must bear the responsibility for the prisoners' protection. Can we end all prison assaults? No, but we should seek to minimize it. Not conveying an attitude that accepts prison rape (ie. "Bubba jokes") is a big part of that.

Lastly, Armoredman, I'd like to offer some advice. Some people do know what they are talking about, even when their opinion is contrary to yours. My good friend has spent over a decade babysitting the worst of our society, and he admits to becoming very, very cynical about the human condiditon at times. The thought that he has to keep in the front of his mind is that society has always had people like this, and always will. That does not make society bad- it, like everything else, is not perfect. It is our responsibility to strive to improve our condition despite the knowledge that we can never be perfect. Once you accept that then you are not tempted to make laws, pass judgement and even live your life based on the lowest common denominator.

10shooter
May 19, 2005, 11:47 PM
This thread is at a lose of thought. When an inmate commits a crime in jail or prison they are charged and prosecuted. When an inmate commits a rule infraction they are held responsible. We don't beat them or #$%^ them. We do classify them according to their crimes and history, child molesters are in their own cell blocks, known gang members are kept under tighter security and so on. This is why we have minimum, medium, and maximum securtity prisons. Some structure is added to their lives as are trade and education options. Family and ministers visit. Those deemed violent are kept seperate from general population which will give them up quicker than you think, no one wants an a#$h$%e messing up privileges. And yes we do watch and monitor inmates 24/7 to the best of our ability. Indifference is not tolerated and one can be sued for it. Crimes in jail or prison happen we are dealing with the scum of the earth, but yes they can behave in prison. Animals are weeded out and are in lockdown only comming out for rec. on solo or small groups until they start to obey the rules. Don't get your view on anything from Hollywood they aren't researchers.(Stargate, Star Trek and Pokemon are not real)

And this old they only did drugs not real crimes are still criminals (They tend to get minimum security or jail if a misdemenor).

Also in this thread another (I don't have a clue person) stated Shoot someone in self defense, can't make bail, trial in 4 months, go to Prison. Bail hearing isn't for 48 hours, jail's full, room in nearby prison, guess where you go? No you don't go to prison until after sentenced to go to prison regardless of how full the city or county jail is. On bail you got only part of it, arraignment in most states is in 48 hour but bail amounts under most state laws are set by guide lines allowing the booking sergeant to set a bond amount upon booking.

The cavalier attitude expressed by many members of law enforcement is directly related to our stress levels and is used to keep us from going stark raving mad. I see some one do something stupid I don't cry I tell a bad joke.

armoredman
May 20, 2005, 12:16 AM
I understand you may not have wished to anger anyone with holier than thou posturings, but those with higher morals seeking to impress them on others rarely do seek to offend, and wonder why any would take offense at thier clear thinking and superior standing. Gee, darn.
I agree prison rape should not occur, neither should assault, (witnessed three Sunday and Monday, locked 5 up in complex detention), or murder, (know a few inmates who killed other inmates inside), or rules violations, etc. Point is, it is NOT condoned, encouraged, or anything like the sort. When we find it, we prosecute with street charges. We cannot be everywhere to protect inmates - that is not our first priority. Our first is to keep them inside the walls. Period. Second is to keep them safe and healthy, to serve the sentance imposed after conviction by a jury of thier peers. We also do programming through our Programs side to try encouraging productive behavior to allow them to be productive members of society. This sometimes actually works. Our newest program is Parallel Universe, where we try to program them the same as on the street, with various jobs and responsabilities, to encourage this same behavior when released.
As your local PD, we cannot be everywhere to stop crime, and go figure, a prison full of criminals, wonder why crime would happen?
Tell me prison rape is ugly, when I watched two of my fellow officer held hostage for 15 days in a tower, getting repeatedly raped by Ricky Wassenour and Steve Coy? Think maybe I wanted those two scumbags to be carried out in body bags? Gee, I wonder....
Obviously we have to disagree on several points, and no, I never said you couldn't have an opinion. Everyone has one, regardless of knowledge. I stated you had no direct knowledge of the situation, and are applying local items writ large. All state DOC are run differently, and all have different policies and procedures. So be it. My state does not condone rape of inmates, nor do we condone staff ignoring or encouraging it, nor do we overtly, covertly, or implicitly use it as any sort of tool to either discourage crime, or terrorize convicted inmates. I cannot exlian that any more than I already have.
Have a nice day. We're helping you have one, whether you know it or not.

Preacherman
May 20, 2005, 12:38 AM
Fletchette, I accept you didn't mean to anger anyone: but your post is nothing more or less than the PC nonsense we, in the prison system, have to endure from countless do-gooders who can't (or won't) believe that we're not all cruel, heartless bullies enforcing government intimidation, domination and coercion of prisoners.

We do not condone, allow or tolerate sexual assaults in our prisons, in any way. Just think - if we did, the matter would certainly wind up in court faster than prunes through a duck, and we'd be slapped with all sorts of court orders and judicial administration. The fact that despite numerous inmate lawsuits, this hasn't happened, should give you some idea of the truth of the matter.

Prison rape does happen, yes: but the only way to prevent it, as Armoredman has so rightly stated, is to provide sufficient funds to build and staff prisons that would allow us to put all inmates into 24/7 isolation and observation. Since neither the Federal government, nor State governments, are willing to spend this kind of money (and we're talking at least five times the amount they currently spend on corrections), we're stuck with a prison environment where such crimes can happen. This is reinforced by the fact that the prison population is (by definition) more aggressive, more predatory, and less inclined to listen to reason, than the population as a whole. When you put all your bad eggs into one inadequate basket, don't be surprised if some of those eggs get broken.

However, don't blame prison staff for this, and don't think that there's some sort of institutionalized conspiracy to condone prison rape. This is simply not true. We do the best we can, with inadequate manpower and resources, to safeguard our prisons, with our priorities as follows:

1. Protect the public at large, and society as a whole, from the inmates, by keeping them secured;

2. Protect prison staff from inmates, by maintaining a safe work environment;

3. Protect inmates from one another, by maintaining a safe prison environment.

Yes, prisoners are third on the list. If I have to choose between the safety of an inmate, or the safety of a fellow staff member, guess who loses? Right - it's not going to be the staff member!

thorn726
May 20, 2005, 12:56 AM
oh just for the record i harldy blame the staff, that's got to be a nightmare of a job. i blame the courts and laws that put some of those people in their, and then also the way funds are spent to keep the OCs from having proper resources.
not inot prison building, but it would make sense to properly staff the ones we have.

i think they said the CO to inmate ratio in quentin is well i forget the numbers, but the gap is much larger than it used to be

DMF
May 20, 2005, 01:20 AM
But the FBI doesn't give one ???? about it The FBI? Why should they care? If it's a federal prison any crime in there is going to fall under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) or the Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General (DOJ/OIG). If it's a state prison, it's unlikely that the crime will have any federal nexus. Why is it everyone always wants the FBI to handle every problem they perceive, even if it's none of the FBI's business?

Anyway, more importantly, I don't know too many people working corrections at the state level, but I do know some current, and former, BOP and DOJ/OIG personnel. Those crimes do get investigated IF REPORTED. Just like every other crime, in every other jurisdiction, someone must report it for it to be investigated.

Fletchette
May 20, 2005, 01:25 AM
Prison rape does happen, yes: but the only way to prevent it, as Armoredman has so rightly stated, is to provide sufficient funds to build and staff prisons that would allow us to put all inmates into 24/7 isolation and observation. Since neither the Federal government, nor State governments, are willing to spend this kind of money (and we're talking at least five times the amount they currently spend on corrections), we're stuck with a prison environment where such crimes can happen.

Bingo. I believe this is done more or less on purpose.

However, don't blame prison staff for this, and don't think that there's some sort of institutionalized conspiracy to condone prison rape. This is simply not true. We do the best we can, with inadequate manpower and resources, to safeguard our prisons,...

I think this is the nerve I inadvertantly struck...and it was unintentional. As I stated before, I have a very good friend who is a prison guard, so obviously I do not have a hatred of prison guards. In general, I agree that the vast majority of the guards are honorable people, and I agree that there is no "conspiracy" among them either. What I am saying is that the people who allocate the money, the people with power, at the Federal government level (Congress and their legions of unelected bureaucracies and think-tanks) have conciously decided to underfund the prison system to make it horrible as it is to their benefit.

jefnvk
May 20, 2005, 01:30 AM
I look at it this way. Can anyone prevent you from being raped at all times outside a prison? No. But they will do their best.

Can the guards prevent everyone from being raped inside prison all the time? No. But they will do their best.

Fletchette
May 20, 2005, 01:36 AM
I understand you may not have wished to anger anyone with holier than thou posturings, but those with higher morals seeking to impress them on others rarely do seek to offend, and wonder why any would take offense at thier clear thinking and superior standing. Gee, darn.

:rolleyes:

Well, I wasn't trying to "impress" anyone. I was trying to relate the fact that my good friend that is a prison guard has had some very hard moments in life dealing with the stress that comes from his job. What I said was essentially his words. Not trying to preach, take it or leave it.

RevDisk
May 20, 2005, 02:21 AM
Here we have poor johnny who is in prison probably because he wasn't held enough as a child, had poor social skills, and had no choice but to make a few bad decisions while an adult. Johnny might have known that he would end up in prison for doing things like carjacking, armed robbery, dealing drugs, molesting children, or raping women, but he had no idea that prison could be such a hard unforgiving place. I think we can blame the media for always portraying prison as a summer camp-like setting and making johnny think that prison would be a place where everyone laughs, holds hands, and sings "its a small world." I'll go as far as to blame myself as I spend a great deal of my time working, paying taxes, taking care of my family, and yes, obeying laws instead of spending my time and money teaching the disadvantaged that prison is not a nice place. Maybe I'm just a bad and uncaring person who doesn't think raping, stealing, and murdering are things that I should be do.

My problem isn't with making prisons summer camps. I just think sentences should be appropriate. If a person is sentenced to five years, it should be five years. If he's raped and gets AIDS, it's not a five year sentence. It's a death sentence. Odds are the guy in question didn't deserve the death sentence.

I go out of my way to obey the laws. Unfortunately, judging by the number of laws on the books, I probably have violated a bunch of them without knowing it. I'm not sure how ignorance of the law is not a valid excuse when no lawyer or judge alive knows every law in existence. ;)

Langenator
May 20, 2005, 06:37 AM
Flechette-

You say that you think prisons are intentionally underfunded on purpose, and yet from my recollection, prison funding is one of the larger items in just about any state's budget. More funding for them would have to come from elsewhere in the state budget, especially since many if not most states have statutory or constitutional requirements to balance their budgets (unlike Uncle Sam, who can just sell more T-bills). What are you going to cut? Schools? Roads? Maybe some of the myriad entitlement programs for the poor? Or maybe you'd just ratchet up the taxes?

How would you solve the problem?

10shooter
May 20, 2005, 11:55 PM
Its a lost cause those in the Ivory tower are gripping about weeds on the sidewalk. Why are we so concerned about prison rapes when we have unconvicted members of our society raped. Why are we so concerned about justice in prison when we have unconvicted children molested and killed by those with prior records. Why are we so concerned about prisoners when we have innocent unconvicted school children with poor educations. I see many advocates holler about a cause they champion until the next cause comes about. So before you start the next crusade finish this one many spots are open for volunteer ministers and truely be informed not second hand guessing.
Now we have many worth while advocacy groups around if you truely believe how the prison system is being run this way then do something and stick to it even after the glamor is gone.
As for me I assist the public and have been for 11+ years. I may be jaded I tend to be more concerned for the public than the actor. And yes I don't forget the convicted they still share most the rights they had before.
Life is not fair, bad things happen without government conspiracies.

Fletchette
May 21, 2005, 12:16 AM
Basically, the prison guards are doing their best, just like the border patrol agents. The Ruling Elite decides conciously to underfund both programs, leaving the agents on the front lines out in the cold.

Why does the Ruling Elite do this? Because it is to their advantage. With illegal immigration the corporation (politicians largest donors) get cheap labor. With underfunded prisons we get gulag-style treatment of the prisoners- a horrifying deterent enough to keep potential adversaries from challenging their authority.

Fletchette
May 21, 2005, 12:25 AM
Flechette-

You say that you think prisons are intentionally underfunded on purpose, and yet from my recollection, prison funding is one of the larger items in just about any state's budget. More funding for them would have to come from elsewhere in the state budget, especially since many if not most states have statutory or constitutional requirements to balance their budgets (unlike Uncle Sam, who can just sell more T-bills). What are you going to cut? Schools? Roads? Maybe some of the myriad entitlement programs for the poor? Or maybe you'd just ratchet up the taxes?

How would you solve the problem?

It isn't just the prison systems that are starving for funding. The root cause of this is the Federal government's abuse of the Commerce Clause in the Constitution to Federalize just about every function of government. The net result is that the people get the hell taxed out of them by the Feds (that money leaves the state and goes to DC) and then the Fed says "if you want prison funding, do x, y and z). The states no longer can make laws within themselves because of this Federal oversight. This is done on purpose by power-hungry zealots in DC.

The solution? States need to start fighting back and sue for the tax money that is rightfully theirs. They need to be very aggressive and challange the notion that chewing gun in one's house somehow affects interstate commerce. Once such unConstitutional laws are off the books, the states could adequately fund their own prisons (and schools, and roads, and let their people decide if they want to wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle, etc, etc.)

I acknowledge that the chance that the states will actually grow a backbone is next to nill.

El Rojo
May 21, 2005, 02:15 PM
PreachermanYes, prisoners are third on the list. If I have to choose between the safety of an inmate, or the safety of a fellow staff member, guess who loses? Right - it's not going to be the staff member!I am glad the BOP and us lowly Geo guys all have the same staff member unity and safety in mind. Those are just the rules of the game.

FletchetteWhat I am saying is that the people who allocate the money, the people with power, at the Federal government level (Congress and their legions of unelected bureaucracies and think-tanks) have conciously decided to underfund the prison system to make it horrible as it is to their benefit.You just lost all credibility with me because if you had spent any time in a federal prison, you would understand that these inmates are not suffering one bit. Do you think I am joking when I talk about soccer, football, basketball, bocci, tennis, pool, leather shop, clay shop, handicapped workout machines, elyptical trainers, stationary bikes, cable television, law library typewriters, magazine subscriptions, recreation tournaments, a full sized store/commissary, a barber shop, and educational programs out the wazzoo? Heck our minimum security facility had one of the best horticulture programs anywhere. Do your time by growing plants and enjoying the outdoors.

Federal prison is not horrible time, at least not at the low or minimum security level. You might want to check your facts before you make statements like the one above, because my three years of working in a prison most certainly didn't leave me feeling like the conditions any of us were in were horrible.

With underfunded prisons we get gulag-style treatment of the prisoners- a horrifying deterent enough to keep potential adversaries from challenging their authority.Again, have you ever been in a prison as either a employee or inmate? "gulag-style treatment"? You have no idea what you are talking about. Correctional officers for the most part are professionals who have procedures and rules about everything and must conduct themselves professionally or face lawsuits and possible assault. Is that to say all guards are as professional as others? No. There is an occasional rule broken and sometimes that helps to rectify a situation.

However, your claims of horrible gulags and prisoner abuse are outrageous. Go read the book "Catch Me if You Can". Don't watch the movie, go read the book. See how Frank Abignale was treated in a French jail and there you can see gulag style treatment.

Seriously Fletchette, I would recommend you spend some time in prison before you are able to just make blanket statements about what goes on there. From your statements, it is clear to me you have not spent any amount of time in any facility and so your opinions about the condition of these facilities are null and void. Sorry, if you haven't been there, you really can't comment about what it is like there. This isn't an elitist attitude, it is a simple fact. At this point you clearly don't know what you are talking about. It would be no different than you saying, "I can load my .223 Remington to 5000 FPS and shoot 5" groups at 1000 yards with it." When you are wrong, you are wrong.

10shooter
May 21, 2005, 06:04 PM
So El Rojo, Preacherman, and Armoredman let me see if I got this right. We classify inmates by low/minimum, medium, or maximum security from their history and current charge. We have jails for those sentenced as misdemeanors to county time and felonys go to state prisons. We seperate violent from nonviolent and prosecute those in prison for crimes committed in prison. We do watch and monitor them as well as giving them educational access. We give them cable tv and let them work outside. How is it that I watched a movie last month (on late night cable to hide it from the masses) where an 18 year old girl who just smoked pot once (forced by her boyfriend) was thrown straight to prison with a homicidal maniac prison warden and staff. During this movie I believe I saw several rights violation we must act now and talk off the tops of our heads before rational thought takes over. :neener:
I've got a friend who told me that by filling down the firing pin guns can go full-auto what can we do to stop this. :rolleyes:
I've heard that the governments of most European countries are secretly run by the satanic group Illuminata no time to find the facts we most stop them now. :evil:
I've got to go for real now I'm off to help my son and his boyscout troop prepare for summer camp and develop those skills that will help them make better choices as adults, like staying out of jail.

El Rojo
May 21, 2005, 07:13 PM
For a second 10shooter I didn't see the sarcasm. I am glad I am getting better at reading discussion board sarcasm because I was about to start quoting you! The smileys helped.

jefnvk
May 21, 2005, 07:53 PM
I've got a friend who told me that by filling down the firing pin guns can go full-auto what can we do to stop this

I dunno about filing down, but I do know of one, that when the firing pin is caked in cosmo, tends to do the same thing ;)

And sense we are abandoning rational thought, Hillary in '08!

Fletchette
May 22, 2005, 12:53 AM
El Rojo,

Clearly, I am talking about the max-security prisons. The thread was about prison rape, not Nintendo. Yes, there are lower-security country clubs, but you simply cannot deny that prison rape occurs.

And as for all the stuff you list that prisoners have (games, television, etc.) it isn't worth a hoot if you are being abused by fellow inmates.

You just lost all credibility with me...

I don't think I ever had any with you, because I am not LEO.

In any case, why is it so inconceivable that the prison system is underfunded (something which LEOs complain about all the time) for the same reason the border is underfunded (same people, same complaints)? Clearly the government is underfunding the Border Patrol because it has motives other than enforcing the law. Could it not be that it is the same for the prison system too?

Fletchette
May 22, 2005, 12:57 AM
However, your claims of horrible gulags and prisoner abuse are outrageous. Go read the book "Catch Me if You Can". Don't watch the movie, go read the book. See how Frank Abignale was treated in a French jail and there you can see gulag style treatment.

So what's your point? France is hardly a free country, so reading about their terrible prison system is a moot point. It is sort of like saying, "stop complaining, in Iran they cut off BOTH hands if you're caught stealing..."

GRB
May 22, 2005, 01:14 AM
One of the flaws in our criminal justice system is that you can put away a hardened criminal for life - and if there is no death penalty in his state for violent felonies committed while in jail on a life sentence, then he can get away with murder, let alone rape.

Rape in prison or elsewhere is a crime and should be treated as such. In jail it should be treated as a worse offense if only because it is a violent felony committed by an already convicted or charged person. If it were up to me, anyone serving a life sentence and then convicted of having committed a violent felony in jail would be exceuted. Anyone on less than a life sentence, would receive at least life and maybe death dependent upon the crime for any violent felony committed while incarcerated.

Oh if only I were the all powerful supreme leader, things would be different.

All the best,GB

El Rojo
May 22, 2005, 03:21 AM
Yes, there are lower-security country clubs, but you simply cannot deny that prison rape occurs.I never did. It does occur. The statement was made that our prisons are gulag type facilities where underpaid guards make the law and justice is served by those in power all in order to effect a harsher penalty than simply being sentenced to ten years. I confronted you naysayers on your comments made not from experience, but from gross exageration and assumptions. The prison I was at had very little of this going on. I would guess that most of the prisons accross the federal system are not these underfunded facilities that so many of you have stated exist, without any kind of statistics or rational other than your own word. Prison guards are paid quite well, at least in our private corporate prison. And guess what? Everyone talks about how the BOP (the real feds) has it ten times better than us. Imagine that.

I don't think I ever had any with you, because I am not LEO.That makes us of the same form. What do you know, neither am I. I teach high school history. Not only that, I don't consider prison guards or any prison employees as LEO. They are professional babysitters (sort of like high school history teachers). You are not judged based on your career path and not once did I make that judgement. If you care to go back and read my statements, I judge you based on your statements. Too bad you can't do the same for me.

In any case, why is it so inconceivable that the prison system is underfunded (something which LEOs complain about all the time) for the same reason the border is underfunded (same people, same complaints)? Clearly the government is underfunding the Border Patrol because it has motives other than enforcing the law. Could it not be that it is the same for the prison system too?Maybe Preacherman can answer this, are any of your guards or employees complaining about their pay over there in the BOP? I know I complained about my pay as a teacher in a privately contracted facility, but that is because the guards with a high school diploma and a 6 week class were paid at least $7 more an hour than my bachelor degree having behind. I haven't heard the PRK prison guards complain about being underpaid either, they have the most powerful guard union in the state, second even to the teacher's union. The only person saying that LEO (which again, I don't consider prison guards to be LEO) are underpaid or underfunded would be the naysayers in this thread.

What the prison staff in this thread stated was that if you want all inmates to be secure at all times, you would have to put them all in individual cells, which would require new facilities and more staff. You must have confused this with a cry of underfunding. These are not necessarily the same. I had no problem being on a compound with 1800+ federal low inmates vs. a staff of maybe 200 on any given day. Most of the inmates respected the staff and each other. They actually like order and security and they take means to insure that they can maintain that order themselves in a lot of cases. It is only when you really start screwing with them, in a gulag type manner, that things start to get uncomfortable.

Are there bad prisons out there? Sure. I would rather not work in a PRK state prison, they obviously don't have it near as good as my former cushy Federal low security joint. However, you have yet to provide sufficient evidence that the government has short changed our federal prisons in order to create these so called gulags you refer to. A comparison to the Border Patrol? Please. Just because the Border Patrol is underfunded does not mean the Army or welfare is underfunded, so why make the jump to prisons? I know why, because you have no factual evidence and you continue to spout off about things you don't actually have first hand experience with.

So what's your point? France is hardly a free country, so reading about their terrible prison system is a moot point. It is sort of like saying, "stop complaining, in Iran they cut off BOTH hands if you're caught stealing..."France is hardly a free country? Your ignorance of the French form of government clearly proves my point that your statements are without factual basis and that you are not speaking from a position of knowledge or clear understanding of the issues at hand, but from a position of assumptions and guesses. Let me prove your wrong by simply having your read this link about the government of France. (http://www.info-france-usa.org/atoz/descript.asp) What do you know? France is a constitutional republic that includes a parliament and selects a head of state through universal suffrage for everyone over 18 years old. Wow, they are a free country. Imagine that. I caught you in another falsehood. Oh, you meant they are not as free as us? Well maybe next time you will say that instead of "France is hardly a free country." It isn't anyone's fault but their own that they freely choose socialism.

And no, reading about France's horrible prison system does serve a point. If you want to illustrate examples of horrible prison systems, read about what France was like. If you want to talk about our system, go spend some time in our prison systems because it is clear you have no direct knowledge yourself and you rely on assumptions and guesses (possibly formulated from watching prison movies, who really knows) to characterize our prison system.

Fletchette, you are going to have to step it up a bit if you want to have a rational debate with us. I have asked you to provide evidence and proof of your claims and you respond by hiding behind the classic "you LEOs" excuse and claiming France isn't a free country. Those two reasons have been shown lacking and the original challenge stands. Show us how bad the prison systems in the United States are. We don't want your word for it, because so far you have been unable to prove you have ever witnessed it first hand. We have and we have told you what it is like in our facilities. And yes Preacherman comes from a high security prison, so you have a pretty wide view of the system besides my low and minimum facilities.

So tell us again, how bad is it? :banghead:

armoredman
May 22, 2005, 10:13 AM
...With underfunded prisons we get gulag-style treatment of the prisoners- a horrifying deterent enough to keep potential adversaries from challenging their authority.
Your statement indicates a lack of pertinent knowledge. Gulags worked prisoners to death every day. The only deaths in my prison has been three in the last year, due to heart attack and old age. Please study your source material,as it may have gaps and inaccuracies of horrifying proportions...
El Rojo, in many states COs are LEO, POST certified too. Some swap officers back and forth from street to prison. Good system.

Edited to add - we are such horribly violent knuckle draggin' thugs, that we just eliminated Tasers from our self defense inventory, due to 11 tased people dying, over a period of three years. That's what, one hour of rush hour traffic in NYC? Yeah, we just love to torture and maim.....'scuse me, gotta polish up my chromed brass knuckles....

GRB
May 22, 2005, 10:32 AM
Flchette,

On what do you base your conclusions and statements about prison life in the United States? To what cold hard evidence can you point that shows the prison system, on the whole, in the USA is comparable to the Gulag system of the former USSR regarding treatment of prisoners? Please bear in mind, I am not asking you what news report you read in a left wing peridoical, I am asking for cold hard evidence. Is there any out there that shows the US prison system as equal with the Gulags of the USSR?

All the best,
Glenn B

El Rojo
May 22, 2005, 12:47 PM
El Rojo, in many states COs are LEO, POST certified too. Some swap officers back and forth from street to prison. Good system.Good point armoredman. I forgot about most county systems where your deputies have to start in the county jail for a couple of years before they get transfered to the street. Point well taken. As far as the guards at my prison, I would never consider them LEOs. A six week class should hardly make you a LEO.

armoredman
May 22, 2005, 01:40 PM
Private prisons have horrible academies. Out here, private prison guards are exactly that, security guards, with a SG license. Corrections officer, with the state, are sworn officers, with a 9 week academy, regular continued instruction, etc. We have the same carry authority as other LEO in AZ, but we do not posess arrest authority outside the walls. Only differance.
I would like to see our academy grow more, and BTW, we are the number 2 academy in the US. Cali has a 16 week course that is supposedly quite good.

Fletchette
May 22, 2005, 06:46 PM
Where to begin…

From El Rojo,

If you care to go back and read my statements, I judge you based on your statements. Too bad you can't do the same for me.

I am not judging you.

Maybe Preacherman can answer this, are any of your guards or employees complaining about their pay over there in the BOP?

There is more to prison funding than the salaries of the guards. There are the number of guards hired (so inmates cannot assault each other without the guards around) more cells (so the inmates aren’t overcrowded), etc, etc.

I had no problem being on a compound with 1800+ federal low inmates vs. a staff of maybe 200 on any given day.

I’ll repeat myself: I am not talking about low-security prisons where assaults are rare. Yes, there are a lot of low-security prisons where the inmates are treated very well, and prison rape hardly ever occurs.

A comparison to the Border Patrol? Please. Just because the Border Patrol is underfunded does not mean the Army or welfare is underfunded, so why make the jump to prisons? I know why, because you have no factual evidence and you continue to spout off about things you don't actually have first hand experience with.

Once again, because I do not work in, nor have ever been incarcerated in, a prison I somehow do not have the right to an opinion. Contrast this statement with your earlier statement:

You are not judged based on your career path and not once did I make that judgement

I think that you are judging me based on my career path (or lack of prison-related career path)

France is hardly a free country? Your ignorance of the French form of government clearly proves my point that your statements are without factual basis and that you are not speaking from a position of knowledge or clear understanding of the issues at hand, but from a position of assumptions and guesses. Let me prove your wrong by simply having your read this link about the government of France. What do you know? France is a constitutional republic that includes a parliament and selects a head of state through universal suffrage for everyone over 18 years old. Wow, they are a free country. Imagine that. I caught you in another falsehood. Oh, you meant they are not as free as us? Well maybe next time you will say that instead of "France is hardly a free country." It isn't anyone's fault but their own that they freely choose socialism.

This is a debate unto itself…No, I do not consider France a free country, and not because they are “not as free as us”. It is because their government places severe restrictions on civil liberties. Speech is severely curtailed (mere mentioning a non-PC opinion on the Second World War is illegal) There is no mention or even lip-service to many of the rights we on THR hold dear. Owning a gun is out of the question.

As far as voting?!? You think THAT makes a country “free”? Even Iranians can vote.


And no, reading about France's horrible prison system does serve a point. If you want to illustrate examples of horrible prison systems, read about what France was like. If you want to talk about our system, go spend some time in our prison systems because it is clear you have no direct knowledge yourself and you rely on assumptions and guesses (possibly formulated from watching prison movies, who really knows) to characterize our prison system.

So you argument is that our prison system is great simply because we can point to another country that has a worse prison system. Impeccable logic…


Fletchette, you are going to have to step it up a bit if you want to have a rational debate with us. I have asked you to provide evidence and proof of your claims and you respond by hiding behind the classic "you LEOs" excuse and claiming France isn't a free country. Those two reasons have been shown lacking and the original challenge stands. Show us how bad the prison systems in the United States are. We don't want your word for it, because so far you have been unable to prove you have ever witnessed it first hand. We have and we have told you what it is like in our facilities. And yes Preacherman comes from a high security prison, so you have a pretty wide view of the system besides my low and minimum facilities.

Well, I have already admitted that I have not witnessed prison rape “first hand”, and you have summarily dismissed my opinion on that account. Nevertheless, I have mentioned that I have a good friend who is a prison guard and has witnessed such things first hand. I guess my friend is “second hand” and therefore doesn’t count. Whatever.

In any case, he has had to deal with the worst society has to offer, people like Marvin Gray, who gloats about killing other inmates for refusing to perform certain acts on him. I will not go into any further detail, but I am sure that all you professionals can use your resources to find all the nasty details you want. The short story is that he rapes, he kills, he admits it and has even requested to be put to death, but the state keeps him around.

There. You have your example. It is only one example, but I am not here to list off all the terrible things that happen behind bars, one by one, so you will take my arguments seriously.

From Armoredman:

Your statement indicates a lack of pertinent knowledge. Gulags worked prisoners to death every day. The only deaths in my prison has been three in the last year, due to heart attack and old age. Please study your source material,as it may have gaps and inaccuracies of horrifying proportions...

See my above responses as your complaint to me is identical to El Rojo’s

From Glenn Bartley:

Flchette,

On what do you base your conclusions and statements about prison life in the United States? To what cold hard evidence can you point that shows the prison system, on the whole, in the USA is comparable to the Gulag system of the former USSR regarding treatment of prisoners? Please bear in mind, I am not asking you what news report you read in a left wing peridoical, I am asking for cold hard evidence. Is there any out there that shows the US prison system as equal with the Gulags of the USSR?

Thanks for being polite. I admit that I do not have hard evidence, my argument is based merely on conjecture. It is the same level of conjecture that many here use when they state for certain that the government is underfunding the Border Patrol on purpose. No direct evidence, merely an observation supported by mountains of circumstantial evidence.

I will also concede that the U.S. prison system is not “on average”, or even close to the gulags of the former USSR. My concern is that it is moving in that direction.

Preacherman
May 22, 2005, 09:09 PM
Fletchette, I'm going to have to side with others in this debate, and insist that unless and until you've experienced prison life from the inside, either as a staff member or as an inmate, you truly don't understand the situation. I don't intend this to be a put-down, or to denigrate your opinions: you have an absolute right to hold the positions you've taken, and I respect that. However, in the absence of actual experience, you simply don't understand.

I was the same until a few years ago. I had upwards of five years experience of volunteer prison ministry, where every week I'd go into a prison for a couple of hours to provide services, counseling, etc. However, this did nothing to prepare me for the reality of life behind the walls when I went into this ministry full-time. The training, the experience of life among these inmates, etc. - all went far beyond what I'd foreseen or expected. Even in a minimum-security camp or prison, there are aspects of prison life that are unexpected: and in a max-security institution, it's a whole different way of life. It's simply something that can't be described to an outsider.

I guess the only analogy I can give is that of sex. If you've read about it, heard about it, etc., you have a pretty good theoretical idea what's involved: but you don't really know unless and until you've experienced it. I don't know if that analogy makes things any clearer, but it's the best I can do.

El Rojo
May 23, 2005, 12:12 AM
I admit that I do not have hard evidence, my argument is based merely on conjecture. It is the same level of conjecture that many here use when they state for certain that the government is underfunding the Border Patrol on purpose. No direct evidence, merely an observation supported by mountains of circumstantial evidence.We have hard evidence. We have described the hard evidence to you. We have told you what it is really like on the inside. Yet you stick to your conjecture and circumstantial evidence and refute what we are telling you.

It wouldn't be so bad if you would listen and attempt to hear what we are telling you, but you continue to stick to your general belief that we are heading to a gulag style system with no real general knowledge of how the system works now except from your one friend and some other outside source.

Once again, because I do not work in, nor have ever been incarcerated in, a prison I somehow do not have the right to an opinion.When you voice an opinion about the conditions inside a prison and the people who actually have spent some fairly significant time inside a prison tell you that your opinion is off, yes, that means you are no longer entitled to that opinion. Your opinion turns into a fallacy. If you want to live a life of fallacies, go for it. That is your choice, but not an opinion.

There are the number of guards hired (so inmates cannot assault each other without the guards around) more cells (so the inmates aren’t overcrowded), etc, etc.Yeah and this has already been covered. The opinions on this board have not expressed that prisons are underfunded. What was said was that if you want a 100 percent safe prison, it is going to cost a lot of money, but even then, who can give that gaurantee? My prison didn't need anymore space and could have only used a handful of more guards, but that really wouldn't stop the inmates from taking over if they wanted. 1800 vs 200. The outcome is going to be the same everytime if they truly wanted to rise up.

I think that you are judging me based on my career path (or lack of prison-related career path)This has nothing to do with your career path. Go do some research on prison. Go talk to more people than your one buddy about prison. Heck even listen to us about prison. This has nothing to do with your career path nor mine. It has to do with facts and perception. Having spent some time in prison, I don't agree with your analysis. You having not spend any time in prison, disagree with my analysis. These are simple facts that have nothing to do with your career choice or job. If you want to be more informed, go get educated. You don't have to change careers to do so.

I will also concede that the U.S. prison system is not “on average”, or even close to the gulags of the former USSR. My concern is that it is moving in that direction.Fair enough. Tell us why? Keep in mind that a common thread that probably all current or former prison employees are going to tell you about are the rules and policies that we have to follow at all time or risk losing our jobs or our lives. Keep in mind that the inmates have numerous luxuries and resources at their disposal concerning litigation and restitution. All it takes is one mistake by a prison employee to get fired and/or arrested, but the inmate has little to lose. So if you are going to go the abuse of power, gulag route, keep in mind, the inmates are going to have to lose a lot of power in the future and we are going to have to gain some. Not to mention good people like the three people on this thread are going to have to give up their principles and morals in order to make this gulag dream come true. Good luck with your theory.

Fletchette
May 23, 2005, 12:59 AM
This has nothing to do with your career path. Go do some research on prison. Go talk to more people than your one buddy about prison. Heck even listen to us about prison.

Alright, but I remain confused. On the one hand you said:

You just lost all credibility with me because if you had spent any time in a federal prison, you would understand that these inmates are not suffering one bit. Do you think I am joking when I talk about soccer, football, basketball, bocci, tennis, pool, leather shop, clay shop, handicapped workout machines, elyptical trainers, stationary bikes, cable television, law library typewriters, magazine subscriptions, recreation tournaments, a full sized store/commissary, a barber shop, and educational programs out the wazzoo? Heck our minimum security facility had one of the best horticulture programs anywhere. Do your time by growing plants and enjoying the outdoors.

but Armoredman says:

I agree prison rape should not occur, neither should assault, (witnessed three Sunday and Monday, locked 5 up in complex detention), or murder, (know a few inmates who killed other inmates inside), or rules violations, etc.

and Preacherman says:

I was the same until a few years ago. I had upwards of five years experience of volunteer prison ministry, where every week I'd go into a prison for a couple of hours to provide services, counseling, etc. However, this did nothing to prepare me for the reality of life behind the walls when I went into this ministry full-time. The training, the experience of life among these inmates, etc. - all went far beyond what I'd foreseen or expected. Even in a minimum-security camp or prison, there are aspects of prison life that are unexpected: and in a max-security institution, it's a whole different way of life. It's simply something that can't be described to an outsider.


So, I am listening, but I am not getting a clear picture of what it is like in prison. Is it "inmates are not suffering one bit" or multiple assaults in a couple of days or something that "went far beyond what I'd forseen or expected"?

I guess I really am confused. The jist of my opinion on this entire thread is that criminals should be punished for their crimes, but the punishment should fit the crime. It is my opinion that a lot of people have a binary justice system in mind. Either you are innocent (in which case you would not be arrested) or you get convicted of anything and you should be locked up, the key thrown away and you get to share a cell with Bubba. I disagree with that.

El Rojo
May 23, 2005, 09:05 AM
Either you are innocent (in which case you would not be arrested) or you get convicted of anything and you should be locked up, the key thrown away and you get to share a cell with Bubba.Ok, I am following you now. Look at it this way. Where are the majority of assaults and general lawlessness occuring? Higher security prisons. The staff are trying to do their best to keep themselves and the inmates safe. However, like they said, it is hard to keep these guys in line because they might be looking at some pretty serious time like 30 years to life. If a guy has a life sentence, he isn't going to get to go to a lower security prison and further, what is his incentive for behaving? It is hard to control these people at all. Does that mean the prison is turning into a gulag?

The good news is we have different security classifications now. Actually, in the past they didn't used to pay as much attention to security classification. That came back to bite them when some inmates rioted back a couple decades back in New Mexico. Basically some really bad inmates got mixed in with some lower security inmates, the bad inmates rioted, and killed a whole bunch of snitches and lower class inmates. That is when they sort of figured out these professional predators didn't need to be mixed up with the general population, especially with lower security inmates.

So my low and minimum security prison is proof that this gulag type system isn't happening. I kid you not when I say you would be appalled at how good my inmates had it. My list of recreational activities above was no exaggeration. And we are not a Club Fed either. There are much better places to be in the federal system. I am pretty sure we are just a common federal low and minimum security prison. These guys are not neglected or abused in the least.

So if you commit some minor gun charge or other smaller crime and get sent to prison on federal gun charges, don't worry. It won't be that bad. You aren't going to get locked up with Bubba and raped. You are going to go to a medium at worst and a low or even a camp, aka minimum, at best. There your cube mate, there are no cells, it is a dorm with open cubes, will most likely be someone of your own race, he could be anywhere from 18 to 70 years old, and most of the time he will probably be more interested in typing in the law library or taking college classes from the local community college over in the education department. That is if he isn't out on the rec yard playing tennis or bocci or in the general purpose room playing chess and watching TV.

So a clarifying question for armoredman and Preacherman is how bad are your prisons? Are the inmates so lawless and your hands so tied that you think we are heading to a gulag type system to where if I get 25 years to life, I am more likely to be raped or murdered before I serve my sentence? Are things getting worse or better in your opinions? What kind of resources would you like to see in order to improve the system and steer away from any possible gulag type situations, if such trend is even occuring?

armoredman
May 23, 2005, 10:36 AM
Gulag? Nope. I see a trend towards programming becoming more and more important, with the emphasis being on preparing the inmate for return to society as a (hopefully) productive citizen. Why else have him in there, other than to change behavior?
To partially answer you question, Flechette, there have been several disturbances in my system in the last two weeks due to circumstances of which I cannot inform you, but understand it is not that common on my yard, a medium high security prison. In the lockdown, where I did my first 2.5 years, mostly assaults were on staff, dartings, feces throwing, cocktails made of feces, blood, urine, semen, stuffed in a toothpaste tube used as a squirt gun, or even held in the mouth and spit out at the closest officer. Darts were also commonly dipped in a cocktail or bodily fluids, as well.
If we can upgrade facilities, and hire more quality staff, assaults and such inside the walls will be harder for them to perpetrate, and easier to prevent. End of line.

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