Magazine October 18, 2021, Issue

Letters

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Incarceration Argumentation
Much of the thinking employed in Andrew C. McCarthy’s “Fictions of the ‘Carceral State’ ” (October 4) represents a common but inaccurate portrayal of how and why violence persists in the U.S.

While admitting that time spent behind bars does nothing to make violent criminals less violent, and more likely makes them more violent (as they gain “persistence in criminal offending”), the author nonetheless feels that long sentences are needed for violent criminals. So, if the whole incarceration experience is a waste of money (by the author’s admission), then why waste money perpetuating the very acts that harsh sentencing is supposed

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