The media plays up the drama of police arrests and convictions, and once a defendant or victim is well-known, their story is what is featured in the news. Likewise, the protests that erupt over especially egregious police actions receive a lot of media attention, particularly when these protests might turn violent.
Since writing AMERICAN JUSTICE?, inspired by my wife’s nightmarish experience with a punitive criminal justice system and a possible 16-year prison sentence, if she didn’t accept a plea for us to move and pay some legal costs, I have been looking at new developments in the prisons.
Since writing AMERICAN JUSTICE?, I’ve been following some of the recent news on how costly and ineffective the American prison system really is. The cost is over $70 billion each year, and when you consider the high percentage of the population in prison and not a productive member of society, you have to consider whether there is a way to reduce these costs. These cost reductions will also benefit society by reducing the number of prisoners who can be safely released and finding other means of punishment and rehabilitation.