The title of this blog may have angered you. It may have piqued your curiosity. You may want to hurl hard objects at my head, but here you are, reading just the same, trying to dispel that little piece of curiosity that begs to know: what in the heck is she talking about?!
This issue is very simple and has long irritated myself. In our development as a society we have decided that every single living being in America (except the undeserving poor) deserves to have "the good life". What is the "good life"? For Americans this would consist of a television connected to cable, three hearty meals a day, and the freedom to workout in a gym (our decision to use this or not, as well). Who else has these freedoms? The prisoners who have broken our laws and thumbed their noses at our rules. And what do they get in return? A structured environment that includes television and weight-lifting. Three solid meals a day.
This is hard to deliberate on. They are humans, so should they not be allowed their human rights? Or does breaking the clearly defined laws of the land negate them from this privilege? Is it a privilege, or society's duty and responsibility to treat even prisoners with courtesy and respect? Do murderers and thieves deserve respect? Do rapists and serial killers equate the luxury of being allowed to watch soap operas or even the daily news that might give them bragging rights on if their crime is featured?
I am not suggesting that we return to the days where prisons as horrible as Andersonville or Alcatraz, maybe Devil's Island or Sing Sing. But surely there should be a clear line drawn in the sand that they are being punished.
What are your thoughts about having "luxuries" in prisons? Should televisions and weight-lifts be allowed as part of the prison routine? Or should we strip them of their luxuries as they strip us of our innocence?