Crime Vs Incarceration Essay

Improved Essays
Research Indeed, there must be a connection between crime rates and incarceration rates. Whether the problem of mass incarceration tends to lower the rate of crime is up for discussion. It is only logical to think that when people are behind bars they are no longer able to contribute to crime and raise the crime rate. The more people that are incarcerated must mean that crime rates are expected to fall as a result; studies have shown that this statement is false. An explanation for this could be that when one person gets locked up, there is usually another person who takes his place, thus maintaining the crime rate. This is often true for drug-related crimes as well as crimes committed by young men in groups (Austin, 2009 ).
Overall, the data on the United States crime rates trends show that there is no consistent relationship. Changes in penal practices are not a direct indication of increases in crime rate. Ultimately, the increasing rates of crime cannot explain the increasing rate of incarceration, but there is evidence that it has contributed to the incarceration boom in the 1970’s. Nonetheless, incarceration continued to grow, even after crime rates have decreased. What is most important is how we as a society choose to
…show more content…
The goal is to reduce mass incarceration through policy, legal reform, and social interventions. Through these actions, we can create a system that is focused on the safety of the people while maintaining a fair and equal judicial system. Our current policies have led us to where we are today; a criminal justice system overcrowded with inmates who have been harshly punished for drug-related offenses. The war on drugs was a failure that needed to be treated as a health concern instead of a criminal issue. Health based approaches while decriminalizing drug offenses are some measures that need to be implemented to tackle the issue at

Related Documents

  • Great Essays

    Sources suggest that first time offenders, and ex-convicts are highly likely to commit another crime after leaving prison, thus depicting the prison system’s failure in deterring crime. Many question whether prison is an effective punishment for criminals because its aftereffect causes ex-convicts to commit more crime. In comparison to other countries, the incarceration rate of the United States…

    • 2094 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The Importance Of Rehab

    • 1490 Words
    • 6 Pages

    Some believe that rehab does not work or that jail already teaches enough lessons to convicts. However, rehab can be an important part in preventing crime as it can reduce the use of drugs, which are a typical cause of illegal acts ranging from drug possessions to…

    • 1490 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Research on deterrent indicates that sanction certainty is a far more important deterrent than sanction severity. Further, research on rational choice theory finds that informal costs (e.g., shame, embarrassment when family or friends find out about an offense) are a much stronger predictor of crime/conformity than formal sanctions, and imprisonment can further erode bonds that create informal costs. In addition, this approach is also inconsistent with many of the theories we covered during the second half of the semester. In fact, based on these theories, excessive use of incarceration could make things worse. For example, prisons might increase social learning of crime, decrease informal social control or label and stigmatize offenders, making it difficult to successfully reenter society.…

    • 1557 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    If that were the case, then the label that society has placed on the juveniles that have committed a harmless crime will fall under a stereotype and not seek reintegration but the urge to commit more crimes, over time. If the labeling theory is applied to today’s criminal justice system then utilizing the thousands of programs that are involved with reintegration and reducing the label that the offender has attained can greatly reduce overall crime rates. Instead of placing all offenders in prison or detention centers, it would greatly reduce the label if other programs were implemented first rather than later. Additionally, labeling theory focuses on primary and secondary deviance. Being able to implement social control before the individual commits a deviant act can be achieved through education and the presence of social bonds.…

    • 794 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Instead of throwing addicts in jail, there will be a greater emphasis on rehabilitation. Because nonviolent drug offenders often fall victim to circumstance, they ought not to be treated like criminals. Many drugs are highly addictive, and people may become addicts with as little as one use. Treating drug users like criminals won't actually solve the root of the problem: drug abuse. Nonviolent drug use offenders make up approximately 46% of inmates who are currently incarcerated1.…

    • 568 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    This not only fulfills the duty of the criminal justice system, but it also helps people deter from repeating these offenses again. The consequences of rehabilitation would be extremely virtuous because we would be giving minor offenders the chance to turn their lives around. Not taking away the only rights they have because they made bad decisions or taking their chance of success away because they cannot get a job with a felony record. It is in the best interest of society to allow the criminal justice system to complete their duties and punish drug offenders. However, we need to do it in a virtuous way.…

    • 834 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Due to an increase of negative emotions that may be present, this explains how strain theory increases crime in mentally ill person’s lives. In order to decrease the effects of strain on mental health crime, Agnew (2001) suggested two policy recommendations: “Reduce the exposure of individuals to strain and reduce the likelihood that individuals will cope with strain through crime” (pp. 352).This can be accomplished by slowly changing the mental health stigma. Society can no longer in good conscious continue to reject those with mental illness, even if it isn’t understood. We only hurt ourselves if we socially outcast these individual and it creates further crime.…

    • 309 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Mandatory sentencing is typically used for people that are convicted of a violent crime committed. Some inmates are surprisingly given mandatory minimum sentencing for drug possession. Often criticisms are involved with citizens feeling this shouldn’t apply to drug possession because a lot of people get hocked and it was a moment of weakness to give into drugs. They believe drugs and violent crimes should not be compared. I believe It is a good idea to incorporate Mandatory sentencing because prisoners can try to get off on a lighter sentence for something Sevier.…

    • 1023 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    There was once a time when society only stigmatized drug use, but in today’s society it has been criminalized as well. Nixon’s declaration for the war on drugs became the catalyst for increased punishment for drug crimes, leading to more people spending time incarcerated because of nonviolent drug crimes. However, the time has come to compare the effectiveness of incarceration versus rehabilitation as a means of managing the problem of drug use. At the same time, considering the factor of one 's socioeconomic status as a contributor to incarceration for drug use. Effective change is needed to reduce the expanding rates of incarceration in the United States through the legal reform of punishments for nonviolent drug crimes, increasing funding…

    • 1345 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Prison System Ineffective

    • 1557 Words
    • 7 Pages

    One such argument is that since prisoners have reduced chances of employment upon release, some resort to criminal activities as their best option for survival. The issue of drug cartels is another problem that is currently plaguing most prison facilities in the United States. Many underground drug networks within prison systems promote criminal drug use, hence making it difficult for the government to fight drug and substance abuse (Cambers 19). Many criminal drug lords are serving terms in the United States and are still able to command their underworld army of drug cartels, which again illustrates that the prison system in the United States has not been effective in reducing crime and new alternatives need to be…

    • 1557 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Superior Essays