Peter Moskos's In Lieu Of Prison, Bring Back The Lash

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Summary and Response In Peter Moskos’s “In Lieu of Prison, Bring Back the Lash”, he argues that prisons are an ineffective and expensive form of punishment and suggests corporal punishment be used as an alternative. Moskos points out that prisons are severely overcrowded and come at an astronomical cost. He then gives a quick history of the prison system, stating it was created as a more humane option to replace corporal punishment, which was viewed negatively in our new country. Moskos states prisons were intended to rehabilitate criminals much in the way hospitals heal the physically or mentally ill. The author describes prisons as internment camps used for practically free labor and says while some criminals need to be incarcerated, most do not. Moskos accepts that we cannot keep prisoners incarcerated…show more content…
Prisons are consistently overflowing with repeat offenders and minor criminals. In addition to repeat offenders and perpetrators of minor crimes clogging up the system, the cost of keeping a prisoner is astronomical compared to the author’s suggested form of punishment. However, I do see the need for prisons, or someplace comparable, to keep the most violent criminals out of society. I believe Moskos should have stated hard facts regarding the ineffectiveness of prisons and given pertinent details about the productive use of corporal punishment. I’m not sure there are any “appropriate” forms of punishment. We’re all individuals and what works for one, doesn’t always work for another. I think the most effective form of punishment would be to eliminate the need for it. Wide scale community and family reform and requirements of a stringent schedule of activities throughout the childhood and early-adult years might be a place to start. While any kind of reform would never completely rid our nation of crime, a massive reorganization of our daily lives could go a long way towards
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