The British Daily Mail reports that jails and prisons across America are literally ready to burst, with more than two million Americans behind bars. California, the worst for overcrowding and ever-expanding inmate populations, houses 140,000 inmates. Her 33 facilities, designed to hold a maximum of 80,000, are stretched to beyond the limit.
Currently, U.S. prisons are working at about 40% over capacity – across the board – and that figure is expected to shoot to 50% by the end of the decade.
In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that 30 thousand prisoners need to be released, due to what they referred to as an unconstitutional situation.
Even though California and other states have actually increased available bed space, a stream of new inmates over the past 5 years has flooded the system. And this overcrowding is resulting in an increase in violence and antisocial behavior both amongst inmates and corrections officials.
Often areas like gymnasiums and even dining halls are being converted to emergency living quarters. In some cases inmates are being forced to share bunks, or to sleep in busy common areas, with constant traffic. Single unit cells are now expected to house 2 and even 3 inmates.
Per capita, The U.S. leads the world in number of incarcerated Human beings. Russia is #2 and South Africa takes the show position – #3. Of this vast subculture – nearly 2.3 million people – over half are Black, and 750,000 are housed in private – for profit - prison facilities.
And yet, almost ironically, as these rates are climbing higher and higher – the rate of violent crimes on American streets is rapidly decreasing. Are we going incarceration crazy?
The original Daily Mail article contains an excellent video, that I was just unable to embed – although I did try numerous times. The video is uncaptioned but since it contains no dialog, you won’t miss anything. I would strongly advise that you click on the link below to see this astounding video.
To see this excellent article in its original format with full size graphics go here:
BitcoDavid is a blogger and a blog site consultant. In former lives, he was an audio engineer, a videographer, a teacher – even a cab driver. He is an avid health and fitness enthusiast and an Pro/Am boxer. He has spent years working with diet and exercise to combat obesity and obesity related illness.
- Pictures from Inside US’ Overcrowded Prisons Emerge (news.softpedia.com)
- Four Horrifying Facts About Our Overcrowded Federal Prison System (txwclp.org)
- Prison guards rally outside PM’s Calgary office to protest overcrowding, cuts (calgaryherald.com)