Essay on Mass Incarceration Rates Within The United States

Essay on Mass Incarceration Rates Within The United States

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In recent years, there has been controversy over mass incarceration rates within the United States. In the past, the imprisonment of criminals was seen as the most efficient way to protect citizens. However, as time has gone on, crime rates have continued to increase exponentially. Because of this, many people have begun to propose alternatives that will effectively prevent criminals from merely repeating their illegal actions. Some contend that diversion programs, such as rehabilitation treatment for drug offenders, is a more practical solution than placing mentally unstable individuals into prison. By helping unsteady criminals regain their health, society would see an exceptional reduction in the amount of crimes committed. Although some believe that incarceration is the most efficient solution to crime, nonviolent criminals should be treated through diversion programs in order to improve their mental health and the safety of society.

Diversion programs have demonstrated rewarding results, while incarceration seems to temporarily punish the problem rather than fixing the deep-rooted issue. In the New York Times article, “Safety and Justice Complement Each Other,” by Glenn E. Martin, the author informs, “The Vera Institute for Justice found a 36 percent recidivism rate for individuals who had completed alternative drug programs in New York City, compared with 54 sentenced to prison, jail, probation or time served.” Alternative programs are more likely to inhibit future criminal acts, while incarceration seems to lack long-lasting effects on individuals. In continuance, the author adds that 3 percent of treatment participants were rearrested for violent crimes, while 6 percent of untreated criminals were rearrested for violent ...


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...rceration rates. Otherwise, individuals’ lives and communities will continue being ruined through the American prison system. It is crucial to provide nonviolent individuals with the opportunity to regain their health and get back on their feet.

Ultimately, diversion programs would be a rewarding solution to the mass incarceration and recidivism of criminals within the United States. Unlike incarceration, treatment methods would explore the root of an issue rather than briefly suspending one’s illegal activities. Nonviolent offenders should be given the chance to redeem themselves rather than being directly imprisoned. Even though some individuals claim that incarceration is the most effective approach to crime, it is more practical for nonviolent criminals to be treated through diversion programs in order to improve the safety of society and their mental health.

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