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Incarceration nation

1 in three will be arrested by the age of 23. Quote:

Arrest is a pretty common experience

That is sad.

29 Responses to “Incarceration nation”

  1. MAJ Mike Says:

    To quote an TV dectective whose actor had his own legal problems, “If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime.”

  2. John Smith. Says:

    Just proof that zero tolerance works… Not for the better though…

  3. Aaron Says:

    >ďIf you canít do the time, donít do the crime.Ē

    Fair enough, but politicians, afraid of appearing “soft on crime” are increasing the number of arrestable offenses, and bumping violations up to misdemeanors, and misdemeanors up to felonies.

    I truly believe that it’s getting harder and harder to completely avoid breaking some sort of law as you carry out your daily life with no criminal *intent*

  4. Mike Branson Says:

    Justifying this police state we’ve created takes alot of paperwork and documentation. The effect is that in another generation, having a criminal record will be relatively meaningless.

  5. junyo Says:

    Make everyone criminals, and you can disenfranchise at will.

    There’s an Ayn Rand quote about governments not being able to rule honest men, but I’m to lazy to look it up.

  6. junyo Says:

    Not too lazy after all, just a bad memory.

    “There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power government has is the power to crack down on criminals. When there aren’t enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws.”

  7. anon Says:

    From The Article: “Localities handled many minor offenses more informally 40 years ago than they do now”


    Then: Take ancestors’ Civil War revolver to school for show & tell. Now: Expelled, turned over to ‘children & youth services.’

    Then: give a classmate a Tylenol, save a trip to the nurse. Now: Expelled for violating ‘zero tolerance’.

    Then: When I was in HS everyone had a pocketknife. It was normal. Now? Kids are turned over to the police because they’re carrying a ‘concealed weapon.’

    Then: Caught with pot? Confiscated, after school detention. Now? Turned over to the police for an ‘illegal substance.’

    I have cousin who was stopped for underage DUI in the late 70’s. The cop took his keys and Drove Him HOME. His mom had to go down to the station the next day to get the keys. She made my cousin walk to the car. It took him the better part of a day to retrieve it. He learned his lesson.

  8. Bubblehead Les Says:

    The article also has the line about how it really Spikes in the 19-23 Age Bracket, and Pediatricians need to be aware of this trend.

    Since when does a 23 year old need to see a Pediatrician? For Crom’s Sake, I spent my 18th Birthday in Bootcamp. and there’s a lot of 20 year old Wounded Warriors who’ve come back from the Mid East over the last few years.

    F$&^&$king Nanny State B.S.

  9. Sean D Sorrentino Says:

    Well, in their defense, when they arrested me, I was doing 104 MPH in a 65 zone.

    One can hardly fault them for that.

  10. divemedic Says:

    Arrested three times before I was 23. Not a single conviction. 1 Drag racing 2 Brandishing twice (for open carry, since concealed carry was hard to do in those days, but OC was legal, but did ensure that you would be hassled by the cops)

  11. Ayuh Says:

    “Then: When I was in HS everyone had a pocketknife. It was normal.”

    I used to bring a mace. Not the spray, the handheld club. Made it out of 1 inch all thread and some nuts. I miss that thing.

  12. Barron Barnett Says:

    I made it to 21, and that arrest was because I lost control of a vehicle on ice. It should have been a ticket for driving outside the conditions, instead it was two felonies.

    I took a plea deal, mainly because I was a broke college kid seriously afraid of felony convictions, and got stuck with a misdemeanor.

    That smart as at the beginning saying don’t do the crime, maybe you should find out all the stuff they’ve criminalized that they shouldn’t have.

  13. Aaron Says:

    I feel worst for people who are forced to break one law in order to obey another.
    Fellow out west somewhere was required to construct some sort of dam on his property to comply with the environmental laws of his state.
    Now, the Federal Government has a major hard-on for any sort of “wetlands.” Since he “altered” them now he’s sitting in prison for complying with something his state required him to do.
    The judge hearing the case was a liberal enviro-freak who specifically blocked his affirmative defense of attempting to comply with a state law.

  14. MJM Says:

    We used to do stuff that got you in trouble with your parents and your teachers. Now, that same stuff will get you arrested.
    Also, the breakdown in the culture increases the over-reaction by the police.

  15. Rivrdog Says:

    “ó why do we make that define their lives?” Easy answer, clash of cultures. Someone in charge of the culture expects citizens to follow the laws, so not following them leads to arrest. Those arrested form up the underclass which prefers that their crimes are overlooked.

    For every sob story you can come up with about “his one mistake”, I can come up with ten stories about the arrestee boasting in jail that he had done that crime over and over and never gotten caught before, so it was just numbers which tripped him up.

    Back to the first idea. If you fail to follow the law and get arrested, the mere fact that you are in the jug with a lot of company should never be taken as meaning that laws don’t work. If you want to think that way, that is how society gets not only “dumbed down”, it’s how we breed chaos into the society. When crime is tolerated just because lots of people engage in it, it means we have to get even tougher, if we want a crime-free society.

    Read the question from the other side of the stats: 2/3 of us have never been arrested for anything, and we LIKE the respect we get for that. If you toss all the sanctions for the arrested third, you are screwing the two-thirds majority. If the stats ever get to fifty-fifty, then we have to look at it again, but not yet.

    Nothing to see here, have a tissue, dry those eyes and move along please.

  16. chris Says:

    When I was young, cops didn’t feel the need to arrest someone everytime they could.

    The legal age for drinking alcohol was, as it should be, 18 and the cops simply didn’t exhibit a persecutorial demeanor even when they saw a whole group that was publicly drunk.

    We got lots of warnings without getting thrown in jail.

    That wasn’t always the case, but it was quite a bit.

    We had a soft drink machine that we used for beer (which we pretty much regarded as a soft drink back in those days) that we would open up to use for bail money when someone got tossed in the drunk tank.

    On occasion, the person who went to the jail to pick someone up would wind up getting thrown in jail also.

  17. Rivrdog Says:

    Take a lesson from the Aussies: their society originated with felons, but they raised up a democratic nation out of it, and for a while that nation was one of the best examples of democratic fairness around, mostly BECAUSE of the ancestors’ backgrounds.

    Then Australia made the One Big Mistake, and embraced Socialism, and now look at them – crime is rampant, citizens may not defend themselves against it, and the whole place has gone to Hell.

    When they had no other problems other than a tough fight with Ma Nature and the fact that most of the early citizens were Brit felons, they built a decent Nation, so it can be done regardless.

    All of you sob-sisters can take comfort in THAT, but your comfort ended in Australia about 15 years ago, when they took the “next step” that some above advocate. That led them to the place they’re at today, and where England’s at, etc.

    Any one person can recover from One Mistake, but the Government can’t. If it makes the One Big Mistake (socialism), it must be replaced. The prognosis is terminal, and tolerance for crime is one of the symptoms of that full-circle disease.

  18. Tarrou Says:

    I have one simple question that I apply to every law. Is the action prohibited actually harmful, or is it just something we associate with harm?

    Most of the laws young people get busted for aren’t in themselves harmful things. It’s MIP, pot, loitering, DUI, saggy pants or whatever new flavor of the month law some asshole decided had to be passed before western civilization fell due to an excess of intoxicated 20-year-olds.

  19. Tarrou Says:

    And for those who want to follow the hard line here, may I remind you that every single one of you is a felon. All of us, down to a man and woman, violate the law every single day. We do this not because we have a lack of respect for the law, but because there are several trillion pages of regulations to follow, and we can’t possibly know them all, much less follow the often contradictory legal systems. It’s all well and good to say “if you’re law abiding you have nothing to fear”, just remember, you are a felon. So by your logic, you have everything to fear.

  20. Ellen Says:

    The government (and quite a few advocacy groups) want everything illegal, so they can arrest anybody they feel like arresting, whenever they want to. Read Three Felonies a Day by Harvey Silverglate. I know perfectly well that I’ve committed at least one felony today, and I’m a rather well-behaved seventy-year-old lady. And look at all the trouble Gibson is having over importing unfinished wood from India.

  21. DirtCrashr Says:

    My “good” nephew just got another DUI up-country somewhere in Nor-Cal – they blame hick Cops. Didn’t know he had a first one. Other Nephew spent a year in Juvie before he got out of HS – I’ve never seen the inside of either place, how do they do it? Their mom (my sister) is an f*ing idiot is how, no Dad (divorce) around and too much weed, that’s how…

  22. ATLien Says:

    if we want a crime-free society

    well, there’s your problem.


    Brings to mind the words “Police State.”

  24. divemedic Says:

    The ‘holier than thou’ attitude of some here will be changed if they ever get caught.
    As a kid, did you ever use hairspray as a flamethrower? Felon.
    Ever take 3 Tylenol instead of the label recommended two? Felon.
    Own more than 5 sex toys in Texas? Felon.
    In Florida, there was a bill introduced last year that would make it a felony to take a picture of a farm.
    It is a felony in Utah to go whale hunting in a rented boat.
    In Montana it is a felony for a wife to open her husband’s mail.
    Use a WiFi connection without permission in Florida, and you have just committed a felony.

    Hard to justify this sort of tyranny.

  25. PawPaw Says:

    The problem is that too many things are illegal, not that human nature has changed over the last 40 years. More laws, not a big change in society.

    To quote Mark Twain: “No man’s life, liberty, or property is safe while the legislature is in session.”

  26. Aaron Says:

    >In Florida, there was a bill introduced last year that >would make it a felony to take a picture of a farm.

    As I understand it, this is supposed to refer to people who obtain jobs in agricultural facilities and take pictures to document poor working and animal conditions. In effect, trying to prevent 21st century muckracking – and guess which agribusinesses lobbied for this sort of law…

    As I understand it, it’s not *intended* to turn a tourist who drives by a Florida cattle farm, stops their car, gets out and says, “hey, moo, over here, moo!” and takes a picture into a felon, but that is probably the result.

    And that’s a big part of it, too – the intent is to stop “bad guys” but the poor wording and overly broad scope create criminals of people with no ill intent.

    The wi-fi thing is interesting, too – it’s not as I understand it specifically illegal to use someone’s unprotected wifi connection. However, doing so is in overly broad terms “unauthorized access to a computer system” which IS a felony in Florida.

    And guess what? Many older computers frequently “drift” from one connection to another – it’s quite conceivable that you could be using your own secure wifi in one room, and unintentionally use the unprotected connection of your neighbor’s.

    During the director’s commentary on the first Jeepers Creepers, he talks about a scene in which a character notices a murder of crows sitting in a grove of trees. Salva explains that they had to actually have an animal wrangler bring in non-native blackbirds, because Florida law prohibits filming crows! I’m not sure what the rationale behind that law is…

  27. Rivrdog Says:

    Aaron, you wrote that entire comment just to use the term “a murder of crows”, didn’t you?

    That’s a writer’s felony…

  28. Aaron Says:

    Rivrdog: OK, guilty as charged! Any chance I can plea bargain it down?

  29. divemedic Says:

    AAron- The law does say that. The problem, which results in the statistic that spawned Unc’s post, is that the cops apply it broadly. There are multiple cases of people being convicted felons for using unencrypted wifi. Here is an example from a quick google search: