Tag Archives: james kilgore

Private Prisons: Just Bit Players in Mass Incarceration

[Rather than sharing articles like this one about private prisons, we are re-printing this article from 2015. Do not get pacified by tiny changes.]

A prison guard on duty outside as President Barack Obama tours the El Reno Federal Correctional Institution in El Reno, Okla., July 16, 2015. (Doug Mills / The New York Times)

Social justice activists love to hate private prisons. The loathing is easy to justify. Making profit by locking people up and keeping them there is repulsive. Moreover, major private prison operators like the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) and the GEO Group have a history of tragedy and ruthless behavior. From the early days of CCA when cofounder Tom Beasley described marketing prisons as “just like … selling cars, or real estate, or hamburgers” to more recent revelations of locking up preschoolers, private prisons have plumbed the depths of immorality. And they have thrown money at the project, spending millions on lobbying for harsher sentencing laws to secure their bottom lines, even bribing judges to incarcerate juveniles. Continue reading