Friday, February 29, 2008

My Father Was in Prison With You

Johnny Cash used to tell stories about people coming up to him and saying, "my father was in prison with you." Johnny never was in prison. He just sang cool tunes about inmates looking out the window and imagining smoking fine cigars and having fancy dinners. But if Johnny were alive today, he would have a 1 in 106 chance of going to prison. If Johnny were black and between the ages of 20-34, he would have a 1 in 9 chance of being sent behind bars.

Our country, according to the Pew Center for the States, has increased spending by 127% (inflation adjusted) for prison in the last 20 years. The spending increase for higher education during that same time period was 21%.

Booze, Bibles, Bars.

See Al Jazeera's coverage of this story here.

The hearty amongst us might read the full report here.


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