Here’s one of those “radical ideas:” empty the prisons.
Easy buddy… I don’t mean everyone. But, there are way better ways to manage the prison population.
First, if you have a prisoner who is never getting out, then you can keep that set of people right where they are at (and we will call that place Level Three PRISON). Second, most prisoners are not what you would call a danger to the population. We have been retardedly filling the jails willy-nilly for as long as I have been alive. The reason that I think we should stop is that it is TOO DAMN EXPENSIVE. And it is not accomplishing a rehabilitation of the prisoner.
Oh, and the other reason is: that it makes no sense. Listen folks, we have people in prison for driving while license suspended (twice), for possession crimes (drugs, etc.), for embezzling, etc. These people have never physically hurt anyone, and aren’t likely to hurt anyone in the future. What we should do is redefine the way we do prison.
Your nonviolent prisoners should be in a facility with no gates and very few guards, they should work a job that pays o.k. money, and most of that money should go back to the state to pay for their incarceration. The nonviolent prisoners would have to check in every night- that would be Level One Prison. It’s not really a prison- it is a structured life with rules. We could eveb incarcerate them at Motel 6. They have a schedule and if they are not where they are supposed to be, don’t get along with others or try to escape, then they can go to Level Two.
Level Two would look like a regular prison, but with no fences and very few guards. Here you would not have a job, and would not be free to follow a schedule on your own. If you go to Level Two Prison and you want to escape, go ahead, when you get back you will go to Level Three.
The incentive would be to stay at the lowest level prison because it is the nicer one. When you group all of the prisoners into one level (or several very bad levels) there is very little incentive to make it to a better level. Also the way you treat people is the way they will act, so if you treat them like prisoners … (you get my point).
For people who get multiple DUIs the present prison system is no deterrent. Why? Because alcohol impairs judgment. They don’t think they are going to drink and drive, they just make incredibly bad decisions. If there were appropriate levels to prison, they could keep working their jobs, report to prison at night, be tested for alcohol, and be released from Level One Prison after they learned to make better decisions (and we would get a butt load of money from them).
Do you see how that makes for fewer DUIs? And less expense for us. An average inmate at Illinois prison costs us $20,110 per year, if you give the guy a 10 year sentence (because you are an idiot), you just spent 200K of my tax dollars. Let’s spend that money more wisely.