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 Post subject: Prison
PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:03 pm 
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As you all know my brother has just got out after doing 4 months. Me and Him were talking about the prison life. And he said something I found very interesting.

"If it wasn't for you guys and having family outside I could quite happily go back. It's an easy life. You've got no stress. Food is provided 3 meals a day. No worries about money. You get a good nights sleep every night and to be honest when they told me I was getting out it was that which started stressing me out. If I was someone who didn't have family who was always there for me it's a life i'd easily accept"

My dad has also been inside. He says he thinks that we should be giving people shorter but harsher sentences. He thinks that once you've been inside for 3 months you get comfortable in there and it doesn't bother you anymore that you're inside.

It's a strange one as someone whose never been inside I can't imagine having the freedom taken away from me. But they both seem to feel that it isn't that bad once you've been in long enough to get used to it and even say that it's a life they'd 'accept'. I think if my brother had got out after the first month he would have been going on about the hell he was going through and how much he couldn't stand it. Would we be better giving first time offenders for incidents A one month harsh sentence. In the first month my brother was on 23 hour lock up. When he got out he was out in the gardens between 9-5 working and getting 2 hours social afterwards. That's 10 hours of your day. Say he spent 8 hours sleeping that leaves 6 hours of the day to fill which he'd spend watching TV, listening to music and writing his letters.

The strangest thing I think he told me is that people who had wars with each other. Would feel the kettle up boil it fill it with salt and sugar hold the button down and then throw it at the person as they walked past their cell. He said he saw that happen to 3 people. That seems absolutely mental!!

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:08 pm 
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I don't think prison is that much of a punishment anymore, why do they get TV, internet, etc? I agree with giving them training / education for when they get out of prison, but in prisons where they have broadband and Sky TV I don't really see where the punishment is, and it's no wonder that there are so many serial offenders.

I can totally see where you bro is coming from cos now he has to worry about having a roof over his head, paying his bills, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:41 am 
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Very interesting point.

I think it's as crazy as it is frightening that we as people would ever be reduced to giving up our freedoms that easy. :ohmy:

And I can't imagine ever wanting to live under lock and key just to try and sidestep a bit of avoidable daily stress. :blink:

Just shows how alienated parts of our society are though. :( And it's deliberate in my opinion, just look at all the bad news on offer.

Best way not to be sucked in and get depressed is to ignore it all imo and just get on with enjoying your life instead.

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:17 am 
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It's human nature after a period of time you adapt to survive and modern prisons are well maintained with decent facilities I can see why some people who live in sh*tty council accomodation on benefits struggling to get by would rather be inside.

Yes you miss the obvious freedoms you get in the outside world but as your brother said your basically well looked after as long as you behave yourself.

I think community service needs to be better used for offenders drag them out of bed to go litter picking, cleaning graffiti or collecting bins for a week. If they're repeat offenders then like you say shorter harsher punishments might get the message through although I imagine if you're a category A prisoner then you don't get anywhere near these sort of luxuries.


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:54 pm 
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I think that all you need to do is look at recidivism rates to see that your brother probably have a point. It's a sad sad thing but once people go to prison the tend to become "career criminals"


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 4:29 pm 
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Did anyone catch the Prison show with Trevor Mcdonald? Indiana state prison.

It was compelling. And you wouldn't want to stay in there. Jesus. Although the death row lads had an OK cell. Some bloke murdered a couple at 13, was in there at 15 and will never get out, his cell looked about as big as two single beds. I think he was 40 or something now. He looked like he'd do anything to get out or live his short life outside again.

Think it was called inside death row if you want to catch it. 2 one hour shows.


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 5:15 pm 
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The whole point of prison is to rehabilitate people so they can function within society that's the whole point of sending someone inside as they are deemed as a threat to the safety of the general public.

The fact that so many re-offend shows that the current methods of rehabilitation aren't working one of the reasons for that is the human right act means everyone including people in prison are entitled to a certain standard of living. This means the older methods or scare tactics that prison used to be able to use to make prison a difficult place to be are gone.

I have no idea what the answer is to solving this problem but it's the same sort of thing as the war on drugs we spend millions every year on the current methods but things aren't getting any better.


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 10:11 am 
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Mr C, did you ever see any of Louis Theoroux documentaries about American prison?

There's one called Louis Behind Bars where he goes to San Quentin that was a lot of years back but it was a very weird life some of them live

But then he did one called Louis Theroux: Miami Mega Jail which was in two parts and was actually in something called a Pre-Trial Detention Centre where they detain people who have up on murder charges and what not...but it's like, they can be in there for years before they ever stand trial. It was f*cking mental. Looked like a terrifying place to be. There was this guy who was in who seemed alright, quiet, but nerdy..then all of a sudden he just sort of revealed that he'd killed or tried to kill a couple of people. Proper psychos.

Maybe our prisons are just too soft? Cos I sure as hell wouldn't want to be in any of these American ones.

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 11:23 am 
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I imagine IDFD brother wasn't in a category A prison which would be comparible to the super max security ones on those Louis Theoroux programmes.

I would imagine that gang culture isn't as bad in our prisons as it is in America because they give ridiculously long sentances for drug dealing which mean there is always a strong gang presence in these prisons.


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 11:39 am 
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borocooper wrote:
Mr C, did you ever see any of Louis Theoroux documentaries about American prison?

There's one called Louis Behind Bars where he goes to San Quentin that was a lot of years back but it was a very weird life some of them live

But then he did one called Louis Theroux: Miami Mega Jail which was in two parts and was actually in something called a Pre-Trial Detention Centre where they detain people who have up on murder charges and what not...but it's like, they can be in there for years before they ever stand trial. It was f*cking mental. Looked like a terrifying place to be. There was this guy who was in who seemed alright, quiet, but nerdy..then all of a sudden he just sort of revealed that he'd killed or tried to kill a couple of people. Proper psychos.

Maybe our prisons are just too soft? Cos I sure as hell wouldn't want to be in any of these American ones.


I did catch one of those shows, not sure which one.

Yes those prisons look brutal. No way you'd want to go back.


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 12:20 pm 
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JSP wrote:
The whole point of prison is to rehabilitate people so they can function within society that's the whole point of sending someone inside as they are deemed as a threat to the safety of the general public.

The fact that so many re-offend shows that the current methods of rehabilitation aren't working one of the reasons for that is the human right act means everyone including people in prison are entitled to a certain standard of living. This means the older methods or scare tactics that prison used to be able to use to make prison a difficult place to be are gone.

I have no idea what the answer is to solving this problem but it's the same sort of thing as the war on drugs we spend millions every year on the current methods but things aren't getting any better.


It should be to rehabilitate people, in reality it's used to punish people to provide a deterrent towards crime and for the purposes of retribution, with small elements of rehabilitation thrown in. The Scandinavian system is a lot more effective in terms of preventing reoffending but I don't think people would accept it in this country. The answer to recidivism certainly isn't to make prisons harsher places though, the more unpleasant you make it the more disenfranchised and detatched from society the inmates feel, which leaves them with no option but crime.

In the past we had incredibly harsh punishments for crimes, brutal executions for theft, and so on, it didn't prevent theft from occurring, people do what they feel they have to do and think about the consequences if and when they get caught. The sort of person who would get into a life of crime is unlikely to be the sort of person who would have good long term planning skills.

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:11 pm 
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Kie99 wrote:
The Scandinavian system is a lot more effective in terms of preventing reoffending but I don't think people would accept it in this country.


Even though I have family in Norway I've got no idea what they're system of punishment is. Would you elaborate? Why wouldn't we accept it is it works?

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:12 pm 
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idontfeardeath wrote:
Kie99 wrote:
The Scandinavian system is a lot more effective in terms of preventing reoffending but I don't think people would accept it in this country.


??


It's a very open, very lenient penal system where the prisoners get a lot of freedom.


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:15 pm 
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JSP wrote:
I imagine IDFD brother wasn't in a category A prison which would be comparible to the super max security ones on those Louis Theoroux programmes.

I would imagine that gang culture isn't as bad in our prisons as it is in America because they give ridiculously long sentances for drug dealing which mean there is always a strong gang presence in these prisons.


Nah he wasn't.

He did say their was a heavy gang culture though. Many people from North London.

He said most fights were over things like CD's and peoples washing going missing.

The only time he got beaten up was when he was coming out of his cell with his rubbish and he got jumped and dragged back in to his cell. The reason for that was the night before the person kept banging on the wall between their cells and my brother told him to "shut up I'm trying to sleep" and the guy said "I'm going to get you tomorrow"

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:21 pm 
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Sounds like a reasonable reason :blink:


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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:26 pm 
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idontfeardeath wrote:
Kie99 wrote:
The Scandinavian system is a lot more effective in terms of preventing reoffending but I don't think people would accept it in this country.


Even though I have family in Norway I've got no idea what they're system of punishment is. Would you elaborate? Why wouldn't we accept it is it works?


As Fresti says, it's very lenient, some of the prisons are like hotels, the prisoners are given large televisions, well furnished single rooms, their families are allowed to come into the prison, including their kids, there's a maximum sentence of 21 years (IIRC, it's around that length anyway) even if you murder 500 people, it can be extended in short increments once it is complete provided you are still seen as a danger to society. The people there are educated while they are in prison, they're treated with respect, minimal guards, they can earn money, get career skills and so on. They're taught to be contributing members of society, and generally it works, certainly much better than our system does, at least as far as recidivism is concerned.

I don't think people here would accept it because, in my experience, from people I've spoken to there's a feeling that criminals should get "what they deserve", ie. harsh punishments, even having televisions is seen by people here as a luxury too far. There's not much sympathy for the person and how they got into that situation, with a lot of criminals the attitude I take is there, but for the grace of God, go I, in the wrong circumstances anyone could end up doing pretty much anything. Sadly we don't treat criminals like human beings who have had a hard time, we treat them as though they do what they do because they are evil, it's a cultural thing which would be difficult to change.

Of course, there's also the possibility that a system like the Norwegian one might not work here, the demographics are different, quality of life is generally higher there, there's more income equality, with less of that maybe a lot of people would go out and commit crimes purely so they can go to a nice jail rather than live in a council house, I doubt it thought.

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 Post subject: Re: Prison
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:39 pm 
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Sounds like a good system use the time while the person is removed from society to try and make them into a functioning part once they are released. Most people who turn to crime do so because they've given up on trying to earn a legit living they don't have the skills to make the money legally but they are prepared to risk going to prison to make it through crime.

I think drugs play a major part and I would guess that in Scandanavia drugs aren't as big a problem as they are here. A ridiculous number of crimes that are comitted are drug related be it by people desperate for money to buy drugs or those selling them protecting their patch or getting caught in the act.

I know that in prison there are programmes designed to get people on the straight and narrow but the temptation is always there to fall back into old habbits as it's a pretty easy way to make good money if you're prepared to take the risks.

I tend to feel that your standard of living in prison should be lower than the one you would have on the outside so that it does act as a deterant to those who get out but there is no way to control this as you'd end up with a prison for the poor and a prison for the rich which would be wrong on so many levels.


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