The rise of the system in the 1800s had promised the state government that privately owned prisons would cost less than state owned prisons. This is one of the main reasons state prisons had begun to allow for private corporations to exploit prisoners for cheap labor. According to an introduction to Sociology textbook, there are four main purposes of prisons. One of which being rehabilitation, the act of giving prisoners a purpose by assigning some sort of activity for them to perform. A form of so-called rehabilitation used in early forms of private prison was, in fact, labor (Dolovich, State Punishments and Private Prisons). Most commonly, victims of this act were African Americans. For example, while only make up a small percentage of prisoners, African American women are three times more likely than Latina women and six times more likely than White women to be incarcerated. Also, statistically, one in three African American men will be incarcerated in their lifetime. However, seeing as many Americans, particularly white Americans, even those who claim to not be racist, have a Just World perspective. Meaning, that they assume the world is fair and just, and in this case, the people who are in jail have put themselves there. H...
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...eir lack of care for prisoners. Such lack of care has led to death and irreversible injury to patients. A company already making billions of dollars should be more concerned for the lives they are responsible for (Companies Who Get Rich Off Prisoners).
Why might state government still allow for these systems to continue? Perhaps the companies are cheaper to run and save the government money while still maintaining the task of imprisoning millions of criminals. Research shows that state prisons are still responsible for the most expensive prisoners (“Banking on Bondage”). Instead, taxpayers pay for these services and wonder why the system doesn’t seem to be working.
The criminal justice system was built as a form of oppression against African Americans and a way to increase revenue. Its goals have succeeded, but at the cost of the people they swore to be protecting.
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