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America's Prisons: Opposing Viewpoints

NCJ Number
C P Cozic
Date Published
199 pages
These 24 articles and editorials present diverse opinions about the effectiveness of prisons, how prisons should treat inmates, whether prisons should use inmate labor, and the merits of alternatives to institutionalization.
Individual papers argue that the prison system is effective, that the prison system is ineffective, that imprisonment is beneficial, that imprisonment is not beneficial, that imprisonment reduces crime, and that imprisonment does not reduce crime. Additional papers argue that prisons should punish inmates, that prisons should rehabilitate inmates, that violent offenders should be placed in maximum security, and that offenders should not be placed in maximum security. Further papers assert that inmate labor is beneficial, that inmate labor may not be beneficial, that inmate chain grants are a proper form of punishment, and that inmate chain gangs are an improper form of punishment. The final group of articles argue that alternative sentencing can succeed, that alternative sentencing has not succeeded, that parole and probation can be successful, that States should abolish parole, that electronic monitoring is a successful alternative, that electronic monitoring may not be successful, that drug treatment is an effective alternative, and that drug treatment is not effective. Reference lists for each section and the entire volume, chapter notes, list of organizations to contact, and index