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There Is Nothing Peachy About Prison

December 28, 2010

I was blog surfing to find a post to write about on my LGBT blog (Soyez Vous-même), when I came across a post titled “Royal Rant: The Gay Marriage Question” It was a post responding to an Oprah interview that involved a woman marrying a murderer. The author of the blog went on and compared the right for a criminal to get married to the nonexistent right for same-sex couples to get married. I agreed with the post especially because the author did not attack the right for the criminal to get married, the author only used it for comparison. Later on, I found another post about the “Royal Rant: The Gay Marriage Question” article titled  “Have You Ever Noticed?,” which focused more on this odd sense that prisoners have it easy in jail.

I like the idea of asking the question “if a criminal can get married, why can’t two men or two women get married?” but you cannot go around saying that “it would seem that life in jail, at least minimum security is not so bad for some.” No one commits a crime just for the sake of finding luxury in prison. There is nothing peachy about prison. Research has shown that over 300,000 inmate men experience sexual assault each year (Donaldson). Many families are broken apart due to the separation by bars and many if not all prisoners end up corrupted after being in jail. They call them “correctional facilities”. Many people are raped or killed or they become rapists, drug dealers, addicts, murderers, robbers, or any combination of those.

I for one do not agree with concept of “correctional facilities.” I am especially against the death sentence. We send people to jail as a punishment. When one gets punished, you expect him or her to learn from this and make better decisions in the future. How can one learn or prove that he or she learned from his or her mistakes if he or she is to be legally executed? How can one learn to be a better citizen if he or she is surrounded by nothing but fear, hate, anger, and violence? Would you allow your child to go to a prison to go to school? We cannot make our prisons any more tough than it already is, otherwise we will be moving further backwards than our nation has been moving already.

I see where the author of the “Have You Ever Noticed?” post is coming from—trying to augment the knowledge that criminals seem to have more rights than gay couples when it comes to marriage. But they have it hard enough with their own current situations and I am pretty sure there are gay men and women in jail as well who ends up with the same, if not less, rights as an innocent LGBTQI member.

Just because a person committed a crime, does not mean that they are not human. That’s just as bad as saying that a gay man or woman is not human. We all make mistakes that can sometimes be extremely difficult (sometimes even impossible) to avoid. We must be sympathetic to those who crash terribly after making a wrong turn.

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