martedì 4 ottobre 2016

In Defense of Flogging by Peter Moskos

In Defense of Flogging by Peter Moskos
You have 37 highlighted passages
You have 37 notes
Last annotated on October 4, 2016
a crazy ideaRead more at location 12
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You’re about to get whipped.Read more at location 14
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There are 2.3 million Americans in prison. That is too many. I want to reduce cruelty, and flogging may be the answer.Read more at location 19
Given the choice between five years in prison and ten brutal lashes, which would you choose?Read more at location 20
Note: DOMANDA. Edit
Taking away a large portion of somebody’s life through incarceration is a strange concept, especially if it’s rooted not in actual punishment but rather in some hogwash about making you a better person (more on that later). But what about prison itself? Prison is first and foremost a home of involuntary confinement, a “total institution” of complete dominance and regulation.Read more at location 46
even if you’re adamant that flogging is a barbaric, inhuman form of punishment, how can offering the choice be so bad? If flogging were really worse than prison, nobody would choose it. So what’s the harm in offering corporal punishment as an alternative to incarceration?Read more at location 55
Note: SCELTA Edit
Prisons don’t work, but unfortunately neither does traditional opposition to them. Without more radical debate, preachers for prison reform will never be heard beyond the choir. There is no shortage of ideas on such things as rehab, job training, indeterminate sentencing, restorative justice, prison survival, and reentry.Read more at location 62
Note: ALTRE VIE Edit
Flogging may indeed be barbaric, but maybe barbarism has a bad rap.Read more at location 72
I don’t want to add caning to an already brutal system of prison; instead, I propose an alternative to incarceration, what might be called “flog-and-release.”Read more at location 77
Ten lashes, a little rubbing alcohol, a few bandages, and you’d be free to go home and sleep in your own bed.Read more at location 86
Consider the case of Aaron Cohen, a New Zealander arrested with his drug-addicted mother for possessing heroin in Malaysia.Read more at location 91
Note: UN CASO Edit
It’s just incredible pain. More like a burning—like someone sticking an iron on your bum. . . . Afterwards my bum looked like a side of beef. There was three lines of raw skin with blood oozing out. . . . . You can’t sleep and can only walk like a duck. Your whole backside is three or four times bigger—swollen, black and blue. I made a full recovery within a month and am left with only slight scarring. Emotionally, I’m okay. I haven’t had any nightmares about that day, although I’m starting to dream about the prison.Read more at location 95
you’d be led into a room where an attending physician would conduct an examination to make sure you’re physically fit enough to be flogged, that you won’t die under the intense shock of the cane.Read more at location 100
The punishment would not be a public spectacle but would not be closed to the public. There would be perhaps a dozen spectators, including bailiffs and other representatives of the court, a lawyer, a doctor, perhaps a court reporter, and maybe a few relatives of both parties, including the victim.Read more at location 102
the guard takes down your pants and adds a layer of padding over your back (to protect vital organs from errant strokes), the flogging would begin.Read more at location 106
the skin at the point of contact is usually split open and, after three strokes, the buttocks will be covered with blood. All the strokes prescribed by the court . . . are given at one and the same time, at half minute intervals. . . . . The stroke follows the count, and the succeeding count is usually made about half a minute after the stroke has landed. Most of the prisoners put up a violent struggle after each of the first three strokes. Mr. Quek [the prison director] said: “After that, their struggles lessen as they become weaker. At the end of the caning, those who receive more than three strokes will be in a state of shock. Many will collapse, but the medical officer and his team of assistants are on hand to revive them and apply antiseptic on the caning wound.”Read more at location 110
once they’ve patched you up, you’d be allowed to leave the courthouse a free man—no striped pajamas, no gangs, no learning from other criminals, no fear. You’d never have to find out what the inside of a prison is like.Read more at location 119
The prison-abolition movement seems to have died right after a 1973 Presidential Advisory Commission said, “No new institutions for adults should be built, and existing institutions for juveniles should be closed,” and concluded, “The prison, the reformatory and the jail have achieved only a shocking level of failure.” Since then, even though violent crime in America has gone down, the incarceration rate has increased a whopping 500 percent.Read more at location 138
To understand the uselessness of incarceration—to appreciate just how specious the connection between increased incarceration and decreased crime really is—consider New York City. Not only did New York drastically cut crime, it did so while incarcerating fewer people.Read more at location 147
Better policing and massive immigration—not increased incarceration—contributed to New York’s crime drop. In the 1990s the NYPD got back in the crime prevention game: Drug dealers were pushed indoors, and crack receded in general. Also, police focused on quality-of-life issues, the so-called “broken windows.” At the same time more than one million foreign immigrants moved to New York City. Whether due to a strong work ethic, fear of deportation, traditional family values, or having the desire and means to emigrate in the first place, immigrants (nationwide and in New York City) have lower rates of crime and incarceration than native-born Americans. Astoundingly, today more than one in three New Yorkers are foreign born. Although policing in New York City deservedly received a lot of credit for the city’s crime drop, strangely, few people credit immigrants and almost nobody seemed to notice the winning strategy of “decarceration.”Read more at location 156
From 1970 to 1991 crime rose while we locked up a million more people.Read more at location 165
Note: PERIODO 70 91 Edit
One reason prison doesn’t reduce crime is that many prison-worthy offenses—especially drug crimes—are economically demand-motivated. This doesn’t change when a drug dealer is locked up.Read more at location 169
The war on drugs may have started as a response to a drug problem, but it’s created an even larger and entirely preventable prohibition problem.Read more at location 175
Note: WAR ON DRUG Edit
Prison reformers—and I wish them well—tinker at the edges of a massive failed system.Read more at location 177
To bring our incarceration back to a civilized level—one we used to have and much more befitting a rich, modern nation—we would have to reduce the number of prisoners by 85 percent. Without alternative punishments, this will not happen anytime soon. Even the most optimistically progressive opponent of prison has no plan to release two million prisoners.Read more at location 179
Note: 85% Edit
We could legalize and regulate drugs and also get soft on crime, but that’s also not likely to happen anytime soon.Read more at location 182
we could offer the lash in exchange for sentence years, after the approval of some parole board designed to keep the truly dangerous behind bars. As a result, our prison population would plummet. This would not only save money but save prisons for those who truly deserve to be there: the uncontrollably dangerous.Read more at location 186
Bernard Madoff, famously convicted in 2009 for running a massive Ponzi scheme, is being incarcerated and costing the public even more money. Why? He’s no threat to society. Nobody would give him a penny to invest. But Madoff did wrong and deserves to be punished. Better to cane him and let him go.Read more at location 190
imagine being the victim of a violent mugging. The last thing you remember before slipping into unconsciousness is the mugger pissing on you and laughing. Such things happen. Luckily, police catch the bastard, and he is quickly convicted. What should happen next? What if there were some way to reform this violent criminal without punishing him? In Sleeper, Woody Allen’s futuristic movie from the 1970s, there’s a device like a small walk-in closet called the “orgasmatron.” A person goes in and closes the door, lights flash, and three seconds later, well . . . that’s why they call it the orgasmatron. Now imagine, if you will, a device similar to the orgasmatron called the “reformatron.” It’s the perfect rehabilitation machine for criminals.Read more at location 195
The cured criminal thanks God, kisses his baby’s mother, and walks out of the courtroom a free man to go home, relax, and think about job possibilities.Read more at location 203
Note: c Edit
the concept is disturbingly lacking in justice.Read more at location 205
Note: c Edit
even among those who know the death penalty does not deter crime, support for the death penalty still runs three to one. Deterrence and punishment are separate issues. Punishment is about retribution.Read more at location 210
In an ironic twist, we designed the prison system to replace flogging. The penitentiary was supposed to be a kinder and gentler sentence, one geared to personal salvation, less crime, and a better life for all.Read more at location 213
Today we know that prisons are not hospitals for the criminally ill (though prisons do house many mentally ill people, to horrible effect). At the time, however, many people hoped that we could purge criminality from a person’s system. The mantra of reformers became “treat not the crime, but the criminal.”Read more at location 246
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Cesare Beccaria, an Italian politician and philosopher, came up with the idea of deterrence in his 1764 Essay on Crimes and Punishments. Beccaria transformed theories of criminality. Contrary to popular beliefs, Beccaria posited that the Devil himself did not actually possess criminals. Instead, said Beccaria, people have free will to act rationallyRead more at location 252