Are Prisons Obsolete

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Are Prisons Obsolete Rather than asking “are prisons obsolete” what it seems Angela Davis is asking is “are prisons really necessary?” In chapter one she is quoted as saying that more than “two million people (out of a world total of 9 million now inhabit U.S. prisons, jails, youth facilities and immigrant detention centers…The prison has become a looming presence in our society to an extent unparalleled in our history or that of any other industrial democracy…however the practice of mass incarceration during this period has had little or no effect on official crime rates.” Although I can understand the point Davis is attempting to make, in that prisons and jails overtake much of the country, filling large parts of our states, becoming eye sores, atrocities and school trips for the masses, however, what I feel she fails to mention, is that not only do these prisons serve to incarcerate the guilty, and, for lack of a better statement, most likely guilty, but it serves the public, taking criminals and those who create and instill fear in those who exist in communities. Perhaps it is more for those who need a sense of peace of mind, rather than those who have committed the crime. Davis also states that although it took 100 years to construct 9 prisons in California, over the course of 10 years the number of prisons in California had nearly doubled. Although she raises a valid point in her discussion, and mentions that the incarceration does not lead to a decrease in crime rates, she fails to mention whether the building of these prisons and incarceration of said prisoners was due to an increased crime rate in the areas in which these prisons were built. I would assume that these prisons, would in fact, not be built for absolutely no reason. On the following pages Davis makes the argument that “people want to believe that prisons would not only reduce crime,
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