Independence Day, For Some

declaration-wide

In 1852, former slave and legendary abolitionist Frederick Douglass was invited to give a speech at a 4th of July event to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Dead Under the “Custody and Care” of…

christian-gomez-wide

Bruce Reilly: Christian Gomez was one of thousands in California struggling for things such as food, sunlight, and changes to the segregation policies — the everyday torture in America’s prisons.

California Prisoners on Lockdown in Mississippi

inmates in private prisons

Bruce Reilly: California is under court order to reduce its prisoner population, as they have long-since reached an overcrowded level of inhumane conditions. Renting space elsewhere, although costly, is their answer. They have over 10,000 prisoners currently out of state… and climbing.

California Ending Funding of Child Prisons

juvenile hall

Bruce Reilly: I am not too troubled possible financial bankruptcy due to prisons, particularly child prisons. The possible moral bankruptcy, however, runs much deeper than any bottom line.

Private Prisons Spend Millions to Put More People in Jail

private prisons

Andrea Nill-Sanchez: In Arizona, 30 of the 36 legislators who co-sponsored the state’s controversial immigration law that would undoubtedly put more immigrants behind bars received campaign contributions from private prison lobbyists or companies.

Prisons or Higher Education, Which Do We Fund?

Incarceration timeline

Sharon Kyle: Either large segments of the American population suddenly decided to engage in criminal activity or there were changes in sentencing law and prison policy that dramatically increased America’s prison population. Whatever the reason, states are spending more on prisons and less on higher education.

Prisonomics 101: How ALEC and the Prison Industry Got Arizona’s SB1070 onto Gov. Jan Brewer’s Desk

jan brewer signing

Seth Hoy: private prison corporations, who stand to make hundreds of millions in profits from the detention of immigrants, not only had a hand in drafting Arizona’s controversial immigration enforcement law, SB1070, but contributed millions to the bill’s cosponsors and continue to push the legislation in other states.

First Solve Prison Crisis, Then Fix California’s Budget

Gary Gilmore

Dick Price: To get a handle on the damage California’s current approach to incarceration is having on its citizens, consider this: In a recent 23-year period, California erected 23 prisons—one a year, each costing roughly $100 million dollars annually to operate, with both Democratic and Republican governors occupying the statehouse—at the same time that it added just one campus to its vaunted university system, UC Merced.

Color of Law: Please Don’t Feed the Prison Monster

justice-maze

At its worst, America’s criminal justice system represents the place where racism, greed and corruption intersect. At its best, it is inherently flawed, unjust, and unreliable, and little better than its worst. The engine that drives this injustice system is known as the prison industrial complex. It is the theater in which the nation’s foremost [...]

Prison Expansion Pushed Forward While Massive Cuts to Education Proposed

Prison Budget Expands, Education Budget Cut While the Governor and legislature propose massive cuts to education and 2,000 public works projects are on hold, a bill to propel a $12 billion prison construction project was sent to Governor Schwarzeneggar. This bill is designed to fix problems with AB900, the largest prison construction plan in history. [...]

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