Browsing All posts tagged under »jail«

How Common is Sexual Assault in Correctional Facilities?

July 5, 2012 by


A 2005 article that appeared in The Criminologist was titled, “It ain’t happening here: Working to understand prison rape.” Although I had spent some time working in correctional facilities at that point, I still labored under the popular myth that sexual assaults in prison were absolutely ubiquitous. Kreinert and Fleisher’s article taught me otherwise, and […]

Insights From Jail Population Numbers

May 11, 2012 by


First, a quick primer on the difference between jails and prisons. Jails are short-term correctional facilities and pretrial detention. Jail holds those who have been convicted, will be convicted, and will be acquitted. It holds those who have been arrested but not arraigned, it holds those who pose a danger to others. Prisons, on the […]

The Terrible Price of Mass Incarceration

April 5, 2012 by


Have you ever driven a car, blindfolded, at a hundred and fifty miles an hour? It’s a line uttered by the creepy sociopath, Bruno Anthony, in Strangers On A Train, but it might just as well describe American correctional policy since the 1970s. We are out of control, careening down a self-destructive path, ignoring the […]

4 Reasons the Supreme Court’s Decision to Allow Suspicionless Strip Searches is Stupid

April 3, 2012 by


What yesterday’s US Supreme Court opinion allowing suspicion-less strip searches for any offense says to me: Don’t piss on the street after a night of debauchery because you may get arrested. If you get arrested, you may be taken to the local jail where a bored/sadistic guard will ask you to strip down to your birthday […]

3 Reasons We Should Not Privatize Prisons

March 27, 2012 by


There is a popular, if unexamined, belief that privatizing government functions is a good idea. People think that private companies with a profit motive will be less wasteful and more efficient, without sacrificing quality of services. This argument ties into a uniquely American mindset, a sincere desire to root for David (in this case, business) […]

Inmates are on Facebook But I’m Not Panicking

March 17, 2012 by


Inmates are on Facebook. (pause) I gave you a moment there to just let that sink in, because in this country we are so accustomed to being harsh and punitive that it’s difficult to imagine inmates doing anything normal. A lot of people don’t even want prisoners to have access to something as benign as television, […]