Should prisoners have rights

It has been agreed that there are some practices that are so abhorrent that people cannot be subjected to them no matter what that person has done.

Should prisoners have rights

Print On April 22, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe issued a sweeping executive order that changed the lives ofex-felons in Virginia, instantly Should prisoners have rights their right to vote. This order leaves only Kentucky, Florida and Iowa with blanket lifetime disenfranchisement policies for ex-felons.

In these three states, no citizens convicted of a felony are allowed to vote, regardless of the crime committed, absent government-granted exceptions to the policy. Ex-felons should be able to vote, yes. But so should prisoners themselves. Story Continued Below To some, the idea may seem risky, unnecessary or even unconscionable.

But in fact, there are good reasons to embrace it. For one, our constitutional ideals support the right of prisoners to vote, and denying it violates the concept of self-government that the founders cherished. Granting this right also makes sense for the country in terms of politics and policy.

Should prisoners have rights

As prisons have grappled with the explosion in their populations in the past 20 years, allegations of prisoner maltreatment multiply, and criminal justice reform moves to the fore of our political debate, we should consider that one of the best ways to solve these intractable and expensive problems would be to listen to those currently incarcerated—and to allow them to represent themselves in our national political conversation.

In the United States, the debate about prison voting rights is virtually nonexistent. Only two states, Maine and Vermont, allow the practice.

Prisoner of war - Wikipedia

If anything, the movement has gone backward: Massachusetts and Utah both revoked this right in the past two decades. And indeed that was once true of prisoners in this country. But the federal government has made strides away from the notion of civic death over the past century.

In recent years, the Supreme Court and Congress have affirmed a variety of constitutional rights for prisoners.

Why Prisoners Deserve the Right to Vote - POLITICO Magazine

They have rights of religious freedom under a federal law. Prisoners also retain some First Amendment free speech rights to hold and express political opinions. Most important, the Supreme Court decided that prisoners cannot have their citizenship stripped as a punishment for a crime.

As Justice Earl Warren wrote in the case Trop v. If prisoners remain citizens and retain their civic status throughout their sentences, then it follows that prisoners should enjoy the most basic of their civil rights, the right to cast a ballot.

Should prisoners have rights

In some states, prisoners are counted in their home districts, which evens out the representation. But still, those prisoners are not voting for those representatives.

Other advanced democracies are now recognizing the right of prisoners to vote. The court reasoned that the government could punish citizens by revoking their liberty—but could not uniformly revoke the most central right of that citizenship, the vote.

Perhaps the most important reason to allow prisoner voting is that prisons, not just prisoners, would benefit. But in defending their own interests, prisoners could substantially improve the prison system itself.

We can start with the issue of prisoner abuse.

Related Content Feb 7,5: No matter the severity of their crime, they are still human beings deserving of basic rights.
Aaron Huey: America's native prisoners of war | TED Talk This extends even to people who have committed crimes serious enough to warrant a prison sentence or temporary detention, such as a holding cell.

We already know that prisoners are subject to abusive and inhumane conditions. Under the current system, ending abusive practices requires years of expensive litigation as prisoners sue over maltreatment and prisons adjust to the rulings.

We could improve prisons much more quickly and cheaply by creating a political constituency of prison voters. How would that work? A prison and jail constituency, numbering roughly 2 million across 50 states, would make it routine for politicians to hold town halls and seek ways to improve prison and jail conditions from those who are subjected to them.

This is not coddling prisoners. More and more politicians are looking to reform our criminal justice system, and this would be a common sense way to help them identify needed changes. Of course, granting the right to vote is not enough to create a robust prison constituency.The PM's announcement could signal the end of "bloody repression", a major rights group says.

With million people in prison, mass incarceration is the greatest moral and racial injustice of our time. We need bold solutions to solve this crisis, but few systemic solutions exist.

Mental Illness, Human Rights, and US Prisons. Human Rights Watch Statement for the Record to the Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Human Rights and the Law. Prisoners should retain the right to vote. No matter the severity of their crime, they are still human beings deserving of basic rights.

If someone makes a bad decision at some point in their life, they shouldn’t be stripped of basic human rights.

Committing a crime does not mean someone is less. Oct 25,  · Do convicted criminals deserve human rights since they willingly deprived someone else of theirs? Update Answered Oct 26, · Author has answers and m answer views "Do convicted criminals deserve human rights since they willingly deprive someone of theirs" the prisoners who have their rights protected best are .

Southern Rights: Political Prisoners and the Myth of Confederate Constitutionalism [Mark E. Neely Jr.] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. On the day Fort Sumter surrendered to Confederate authorities, General Braxton Bragg reacted to a newspaper report that might have revealed the position of gun emplacements by placing the correspondent.

Felon Voting Rights