“Let’s debunk the notion that the drop in crime is due to incarceration. In truth, there is very little correlation between incarceration and the crime rate. Between 1970 and 1990 the total prison population in the U.S. rose by a million, and crime rose, too. Since then we’ve locked up another million, and crime has gone down. Is there something special about that second million? Were they the only ones who were “real criminals”? Did we simply get it wrong with the first 1.3 million we locked up? If so, can we let them out?”—Peter Moskos
“The New York Times editorial staff recently felt compelled to come out against "young people being battered and raped in juvenile corrections facilities all across the country." One would hope such things go without saying, but apparently they don't. Twelve percent of youths in juvie homes reported being sexually victimized in the past year. In some juvenile facilities more than 30 percent of the boys say they're raped, mainly by staff members. Not surprisingly, self-inflicted injuries and suicide attempts are routine. We are warehousing our problem children in kiddie jail before they learn enough to graduate to adult prison.”—Peter Moskos, In Defense of Flogging, pg. 87 (2011).
Warnings and beatings
Kim Rossmo, criminologist and former Vancouver cop, tried to warn the public about a serial killer targeting sex workers in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside back in 1998. Rossmo’s lawyer has told the commission looking into the case that if senior police officials had listened to Rossmo, they would have caught Robert Pickton sooner.
Interestingly, at least to me, The Atlantic spoke to criminologist and former Baltimore cop about corporal punishment. Peter Moskos, an assistant professor of John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York, argues that flogging is more humane than the current criminal justice system.