Angela Davis, Are prisons Obsolete?

Topics: Prison, Rape, Human sexual behavior Pages: 4 (1173 words) Published: November 20, 2013

Rather than asking “are prisons obsolete” what it seems Angela Davis is asking is “are prisons really necessary?” Davis is quotes 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. And also brings up the issue of the racism and sexism prevalent in America’s prison systems. She exploits the prejudices of the justice system and highlights the “coincidence” of the extremely high percentage of colored inmates. And I have to admit, she makes a lot of good points through this well illustrated piece of literature. Something should be done about the injustices of prison life. However, there’s a difference from moving from one extreme to another extremity and improving the situation. And seriously, setting murders, rapists, child molesters, and corrupt business men loose on the public isn’t exactly what I consider a great idea.

Here are some of the things that I agreed with in Davis book. I do believe that there is a racist element involved when it comes to the judicial system. Her statistics were shocking and disturbingly plausible. Isn’t it a bad thing when someone tells you that 13 percent of African Americans, who make up 23 percent of the population, are behind bars and you can believe it? Yes I can. I really don’t believe that the justice system is entirely fair when it comes to people of color. However, this err does not mean that prisons are useless and “obsolete”as Davis puts it. In her book, Davis bluntly remarks, “If we are already persuaded that racism should not be allowed to define the planet’s future and if we can successfully argue that prisons are racist institutions, this may lead us to take seriously the prospect of declaring prisons obsolete.” In response to that statement, I say no, the prospect of declaring prisons obsolete is entirely ridiculous and in my personal opinion, counter productive.

Reforms should be made. Actually, let me restate...
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