Prison

At the turn of the (19th) century, a new legislation defined the power to punish as a general function of society that was exercised in the same manner over all its members, and in which each individual was equally represented: but in making detention the penalty par excellence, it introduced procedures of domination characteristic of a particular type of power. A justice that is supposed to be “equal”, a legal machinery that is supposed to be “autonomous”, but which contains all the asymmetries of disciplinary subjection, this conjunction marked the birth of the prison, “the penalty of civilized societies.”
Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (pp. 231-232).

They’re not just gangs of kids anymore. They are often the kinds of kids that are called superpredators — no conscience, no empathy. We can talk about why they ended up that way, but first we have to bring them to heel.

Hillary Clinton

the people who continually vote in new prison bonds and tacitly assent to a proliferating network of prisons and jails have been tricked into believing in the magic of imprisonment. But prisons do not disappear problems, they disappear human beings
Angela Davis

I never saw a man who looked
With such a wistful eye
Upon that little tent of blue
Which prisoners call the sky,

Oscar Wilde. The Ballad of Reading Gaol

The law is for protection of the people
Rules are rules and any fool can see
We don’t need no riddle speakin’ prophet
Scarin’ decent folks like you and me, no siree

Kris Kristofferson

Decent folks have got a right
To say you don’t fit in
We’ll beat you and we bleed you
Till you wash away our sin

We’re gonna break you like a beast
We’re gonna squeeze the earth and sky
We’re gonna regulate your body
And squish you like a fly

It doesn’t really matter
If you rehabilitate
You legitimize our power
When you bow before the state

We’re gonna break you like a beast
We’re gonna squeeze the earth and sky
We’re gonna regulate your body
And squish you like a fly

You don’t deserve forgiveness
You can’t expect us to be nice
We worship hate and power
And we claim to worship Christ

We’re gonna break you like a beast
We’re gonna squeeze the earth and sky
We’re gonna regulate your body
And squish you like a fly

By Richard W. Bray

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