I wrote this piece for the Good Men Project. It’s not long, but I think it’s important. I don’t understand the perspective of anyone who’d place costs over human life, especially when the savings accrued overwhelm the initial cost.
All I can think is that prisons make money, and there are people out there who think that whatever happens to you after you commit a crime, is your just punishment. We’ve dehumanized nearly everyone in our culture it seems. Rape jokes are endemic. Men don’t feel at all safe discussing their own assaults. It’s clearly emasculating to suffer assault and yet we allow this behavior to run rampant in our prisons. And we worry about money more than human dignity.
Men get raped in prison. Lots of them. As many or more as women in the US. We are in a crisis regarding sexuality in general, assault in specific, pleasure is the enemy and dominance is the overarching goal of what seems like everyone.
What kind of world do we want to live in?
I don’t have words for the outrage I felt after reading Think Progress’s article on how the group American Action Forum is claiming that The Department of Justice’s plan to crack down on prison rape and assault is too costly.
Even though cost savings would be incurred due to less medical expenses, Think Progress noted that the Weekly Standard also complained about the costs associated with the plan.
“The Weekly Standard echoed AAF’s response, bemoaning the cost of preventing people from being raped in prison. The total expected cost is less than 1 percent of the overall cost of our prison system and ultimately “end up saving money — for example, by avoiding the medical costs of injuries suffered by rape victims,” according to the New York Times.
Sexual assault in prisons is so prevalent that more men are raped in the United States than women. Actually doing something about that, however, is too “costly” a “burden” for conservatives.”
What about the cost to the men being raped in prison, now numbering so high it’s a crisis? What is the cost to generations of men and their families for being locked away and tortured? What is the cost of drug laws and systems of enforcement that create imbalances in who winds up in jail to begin with? Does that matter to AAF or Weekly Standard? It matters to me. It should matter to all of us far more than how much money is made on new prisons or keeping costs low at them, despite rampant abuses.
I don’t have the words but I hope you all do. I hope you make your voices known, not only here in comments but at the various sites linked in this piece.
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