Examining Theory Essay

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Examining Theory Evan Packard CJA/314 - Criminology 1 December, 2014 Jacqueline Waltman Examining Theory In the video called “Tent City, Arizona the discussion is about the prison and the day to day operations within its walls. Over the last few years there has been a lot of controversy surrounding the Sheriff, Joe Arpaio. Some people believe that the jail is too harsh a punishment and that the treatment of prisoners is inhumane. Others believe this is the type of treatment that all jails should take on in order to truly teach the possible consequences of breaking a law. During the initial stages of the video there are a couple things that immediately raise red flags in my mind. First, the video states that there is no separation between criminals that have committed minor crimes and those that have done something violent such as murder. This creates an atmosphere within the prison where inmates are more cautious with one another because they are not completely positive of what another is capable of. Another possible area of concern for the social atmosphere of the prison is the “us against them” mentality. The narrator states that the inmates are “fighting a daily war against officers”. The conditions of the jail create tension among both the officers and the prisoners so it is easy for the two groups to face off with one another. The corrections officers are aware the prison is constantly on the edge of chaos, so they are wound extra tight and continuously find themselves in a stressful environment. For the prisoners this could have a positive impact in daily life. This could easily cause the prisoners to bond together as one group rather than branching off into individual groups as would normally happen. Unfortunately for the prison guards this could potentially become a problem if all the prisoners banded together as a group and decided to overtake

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