Rape Factories

Why is the government doing so little to end sexual assault in prisons?

In 1984 the photographer Tom Cahill smashed a plate-glass door in a fit of fury at the San Francisco Chronicle. He had just unsuccessfully attempted to get the paper’s reporters to write about rape in America’s jails and prisons. Cahill was a desperate man at the time, tormented by flashbacks and nightmares, his personal and professional life in ruins.

Cahill’s story began in 1968, when he was arrested in Texas during a peaceful antiwar protest. An Air Force vet who opposed the Vietnam War, he did not prove popular among jail staff in the heavily military town of San Antonio. Before placing him in an overcrowded communal cell, he says, the guards spread word that he was a child molester. Cahill remembers with a shudder how one of the staff members shouted “fresh meat” before leaving. After 24 hours of beatings and gang rape, his life was shattered.

More than four decades later, sexual violence behind bars is still widespread in the United States. But thanks to Cahill and other courageous survivors, the ongoing crisis is no longer shrouded in silence.

The U.S. Department of Justice recently released its first-ever estimate of the number of inmates who are sexually abused in America each year. According to the department’s data, which are based on nationwide surveys of prison and jail inmates as well as young people in juvenile detention centers, at least 216,600 inmates were victimized in 2008 alone. Contrary to popular belief, most of the perpetrators were not other prisoners but staff members—corrections officials whose job it is to keep inmates safe. On average, each victim was abused between three and five times over the course of the year. The vast majority were too fearful of reprisals to seek help or file a formal complaint.

Sexual violence is not an inevitable part of prison life. On the contrary, it is highly preventable. Corrections officials who are committed to running safe facilities train their staff thoroughly. They make sure that inmates who are especially vulnerable to abuse—such as small, mentally ill, and gay or transgender detainees—are not housed with likely perpetrators. And they hold those who commit sexual assaults accountable, even if they are colleagues. 

But many corrections administrators are reluctant to make sexual abuse prevention a top priority, preferring to maintain the status quo rather than acknowledge the role their own employees play. Others are actually fighting reform efforts, claiming, in spite of the evidence, that sexual violence is rare.

This resistance is reflected in the slow implementation of the Prison Rape Elimination Act, which Congress unanimously passed in 2003. The law mandated binding national standards to help end sexual abuse in detention. But almost eight years later, the Justice Department has yet to promulgate final standards.

Attorney General Eric Holder has not shown leadership on this issue. In 2009 Holder essentially rejected standards recommended by a bipartisan commission that spent years studying the problem of prisoner rape, claiming that the recommendations—which included limits on cross-gender supervision and the loosening of deadlines for survivors to file formal grievances—would have been too expensive.

It’s easy to feel numbed by the Justice Department’s estimate that almost 600 prisoners are sexually victimized each day. But behind that number are real people like Jan Lastocy. While serving time for attempted embezzlement in a Michigan prison in 1998, Lastocy was raped. Not once, not twice, but several times a week for seven months. The rapist was an officer who supervised her at a prison warehouse. Lastocy was so afraid of him that she did not even dare to tell her husband of 30 years, John, what was going on. Later John said, “Jan did a stupid thing, and she went to prison for it. But no one should have to pay the price that she did.”

Jan and John Lastocy’s lives were devastated by prisoner rape. Holder should listen to and learn from them rather than bowing to corrections officials trying to maintain the status quo. 

Lovisa Stannow (lstannow@justdetention.org) is executive director of Just Detention International.

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  • ||

    "Do unto others what has been done to you"

  • .||

    LEGALIZE RAPE

  • ||

    Contrary to popular belief, most of the perpetrators were not other prisoners but staff members...

    So there is another reason for the prison guards' union to push for tougher crime laws - not only for the jobs, but for the "benefits."

    (I wonder how many of the prison guards can get laid by someone who is not their prisoner?)

  • ||

    Ye gods.

  • ||

    ALL LIES! STEVE SMITH PERPETRATOR IN MOST CASES! WHY PRISON GUARD UNION TRY AND STEAL STEVE REPUTATION?

  • JD||

    All the Steve Smith for Sheriff signs I saw on my way through Greene County VA yesterday make a lot more sense now.

  • ||

    "According to the department’s data, which are based on nationwide surveys of prison and jail inmates as well as young people in juvenile detention centers, at least 216,600 inmates were victimized in 2008 alone." Contrary to popular belief, most of the perpetrators were not other prisoners but staff members..."

    I'm not saying those statistics aren't any good at all, but I am saying that if those statistics are self-reported by way of a questionnaire? They're suspect.

    At least, I find it easier to believe that 108,301 inmates were more than willing to claim they were sexually abused by guards...

    If I sent out a questionnaire asking inmates to check a box if they had seen guards eating their own feces? it wouldn't surprise me at all to get 216,600 inmates saying they did.

    Regardless, sexual assault in prison is absolutely unconscionable in our justice system--and every effort should be made to stamp out sexual assault in our prisons.

  • ||

    If I sent out a questionnaire asking inmates to check a box if they had seen guards eating their own feces?

    Ever got a whiff of a LEO's breath when you've been pulled over? If you have, I would suspect that you would have to give an affirmative answer to your hypothetical question.

    (I keed, I keed)

    [Old joke: If your breath smells like shit, maybe you should change your diet.]

  • Hugh Akston||

    As Kanye said:

    They be asking us questions/harass and arrest us/saying 'we eat pieces of shit like for breakfast'

  • ||

    "At least, I find it easier to believe that 108,301 inmates were more than willing to claim they were sexually abused by guards..."

    "According to the department’s data, which are based on nationwide surveys of prison and jail inmates as well as young people in juvenile detention centers, at least 216,600 inmates were victimized in 2008 alone."

    How you got the interpretation that they were asking if they were raped specifically by prison guards is beyond me..

  • Ragnar||

    Unlike you, he probably looked at the report.

    http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/conte.....ri0809.pdf

  • ||

    And unlike you, I can add.

  • ||

    Actually, you're right. Crappy groggy reading ability at that time. Missed the point you were making.

  • albatross||

    Up front, 2.8% of inmates surveyed reported being sexually assaulted by staff, not 100%. So whatever's going on, it's not just uniform inmate hostility to staff.

    The self-report data included almost as many rapes by inmates as by staff. So at worst, if we assume all reports of sexual assault by staff were made up, we have 2.1% of prison inmates being sexually assaulted in a year.

    Now, there's no way that every inmate was lying about being sexually assaulted by staff. We don't know the rate of lying, which might be small or large, but won't be 0% or 100%. How would we get a handle on this rate?

    The obvious thing to do next is to anonymously survey staff, asking both whether they've done it and whether they've observed anyone else doing it. (I'm not sure how likely anyone is to admit in a survey to something that will lose them their job and land them in prison, though people apparently do answer those surveys sometimes.) It would also make sense to look for patterns--some prisons should have much higher rates than others of sexual assault by staff, because of permissive management or an accumulation of rapists on the staff.

    We don't even know if 2.8% is high enough--some inmates may have been making it up, but others may have been afraid to say anything, for fear of word somehow getting back to the guy who's going to be raping them again next week.

  • Prison Guard||

    "So there is another reason for the prison guards' union to push for tougher crime laws - not only for the jobs, but for the 'benefits.'"

    You bet your sweet jail bait ass that's right.

  • ||

    "You should know better than to trust a woman who's attracted to you." ~ Magneto from "XMen 2" (kinda).

  • ||

  • ­­­||

    I think we need a Federal agency to handle this. Because I care.

  • Barack Obama||

    I'm on it!

  • Eric Holder||

    But Mr. President, felons can't vote

  • Barack Obama||

    Oh...nevermind

  • ||

    which are based on nationwide surveys ..at least 216,600 inmates were victimized in 2008 alone. Contrary to popular belief, most of the perpetrators were not other prisoners but staff members"

    Prisoners lie, so believing them then reporting their lies as reliable is dumb.

  • ||

    Yep. And we all know that the government and the cops never lie.

  • ||

    Get back to me when that point applies to this survey, and isn't another stupid attempt to distract.

  • ||

    Asa sdie not, it's humorous to me how many of you morons rushed to assume my problem was with prisoners and not the reliability of surveys. You're lives are so pathetic and empty that you make enemies out of thin air, based entirely on your viciousness and lack of reading comprehension.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "You're lives"

  • ||

    You aren't lives, Mr. FIFY?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Nice trick if it worked...

  • ||

    Get back to us when you can prove falsification within this data.

  • Ragnar||

    Get back to us when you've read the study and can make reasoned arguments against it.

    http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/conte.....ri0809.pdf

  • ||

    I have, and the reasoned argument is that prisoners are unreliable reporters (which I have repeatedly stated and you STILL fail to address, your link doesn't address it and the authors don't either). Cry more about me being right and you jumping to moronic conclusions.

  • ||

    Blappo, I was agreeing with you, telling Sy to actually read the report.

  • ||

    Sorry, but saying "the study is full of lies" isn't going to score anyone any points.

  • ||

    I don't have to, they're the ones presenting it. Total fail.

  • ||

    Prosecutors use jailhouse snitches (prisoners) to prosecute people all the time, but when prisoners tell of sexual assaults by guards they're lying.

    Go figure...

  • Blappo||

    Nothing to see here, right Blappo? Move along people.

  • ||

    Where'd I say that? Oh right, you're more interest in being snide and pretending to be someone else than actually comprehending a point. Your presence here presumes you're at least somewhat intelligent, so why try so hard to appear stupid?

  • ||

    Well, dumbass, if you actually read the fucking story, you would realize that the prison guards lied, spreading a rumor that the man was a child molester.

  • ||

    "he sort of brought it on himself... this being the H&R comment section and all."

    And if YOU weren't such a pathetic troll you'd realize that has f*ckall to do with anything I said.

  • ||

    "Well, dumbass, if you actually read the fucking story, you would realize that the prison guards lied, spreading a rumor that the man was a child molester."

    And if YOU weren't such a pathetic troll you'd realize that has f*ckall to do with anything I said.

  • TANSTAAFL||

    "You're lives are so pathetic and empty that you make enemies out of thin air"

    Wait, so you don't believe that rape is a serious problem in prisons?

    This means 3 things:

    1. you are intellectually dishonest
    2. you are a troll
    3. You have never seen OZ

  • ||

    "Wait, so you don't believe that rape is a serious problem in prisons?"

    Never said that anywhere, save the stupid straw men thanks.

  • MWG||

    Nothing like a Reason article about prison issues to bring out the idiotic 'law and order' right.

  • ||

    But they're prisoners, dude! That means they're not human any more, and there's no way they are in for non-violent crime or a wrongful conviction, and we can exercise our most bloodthirsty impulses on them!

  • ||

    What's the big deal? Prisoners don't get much time with women, obviously, and it's really a favor these female guards are doing for these male prisoners.

  • ||

    They must be guilty of something, right?

  • ||

    You need to re-read my comment, dude.

  • ||

    Femputer: After lengthy femputations, I, Femputer, have decided the fate of the men. Femputer sentences them to death. By snu-snu!

    Fry: Yay!

    Zapp:Yeah!

    (Kif whimpers)

    Zapp: What are you, gay?

  • ||

    Futurama knows us so well.

  • Not Carl Sagan||

    Please we need rest. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is spongy and bruised.

  • ||

    And this illustrates the problem. Instead of addressing the only point I made, the inherent unreliability of surveying prisoners, you descend into adolescent Futurama segues. You;re not funny, or interesting, or relevant, you're referencing a once cancelled (rightly) show most people never cared about because you failed to understand the point and are incapable of rebutting or even intelligently replying to it.

  • ||

    That's rather harsh for the comments section of a blog. Coming here for profound discourse on why we should let prisoners be sodomized may have been an error.

  • Blappo||

    WAAAAAAAAA!! WHY IS NO ONE LISTENING TO WHAT I SAY? ME WANT ATTENTION!!

  • The Sego Sago Kid||

    You know it got un-cancelled, right?

  • ||

    "WHY IS NO ONE LISTENING TO WHAT I SAY?"

    You clearly are.

  • ||

    "You know it got un-cancelled, right?"

    "you're referencing a once cancelled (rightly) show"

    My comment proves I do, and also proves you seem to have trouble reading.

  • MWG||

    Here's the good people of Fox News' take on prison rape.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gJRDhPha-cg

    Relavant point at 5:00.

    It's almost impossible to distinguish between Epi's parody and what people actually believe.

  • Jim||

    Disgusting. One of my best friends is a "law and order" conservative, and there is much wailing and gnashing of teeth whenever we talk about this subject.

    "If only EVERYONE was repeatedly raped EVERYDAY in prison and starved to the point of death, people would think twice before committing crimes!" is essentially his outlook on the subject.

  • MWG||

    One best friend? Most of my family is made up of Conservatives.

  • ||

    You are so full of s---.
    In male prisons, the offenders are the instigators of filth & violence towards guards & each other.
    Go work in a prison, douchbag, & see for yourself & get some truth in your life

  • Ex-con||

    Sounds to me like someone doesn't know how to carry themselves when in a prison environment. If you "appear" weak, and can't or won't stand up for yourself, you will be fucked with. That environment was created by the captors, not the inmates.

  • albatross||

    This is exactly the problem, here and with police brutality cases. The victims of the crimes are overwhemlingly lowlifes who are more than willing to lie to get what they want. And yet, many of them are still victims of police brutality (widespread video cameras capture a lot of what was previously hidden), and presumably a lot of sexual assault, too.

  • ||

    No, it means they have a vested interest in making their captors look bad, which you seem to have missed in your pathetic attempt to presume my point had anything to do with your post.

  • ||

    Or the idiotic "I can't read for comprehension so I assume facts not presented" internet trolls.

  • Brett L||

    I took part in the IT side of the PREA surveys FLDOC was doing 4-5 years ago. If anything, the statistic is worse than reported. After seeing people get regularly fired for inappropriate prison relations, (not just officers on the line) no percentage they come up with is beyond belief for me.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    I am having comment deja vu...have you said this before?

  • Brett L||

    May have.

  • Anonymouse||

    Prisoners lie, so believing them then reporting their lies as reliable is dumb.

    Agreed. Humans lie too, so we should just follow the logical conclusion.

  • ||

    That surveys are unreliable? Agreed. What did you assume some other point I didn't even attempt to make?

  • MWG||

    Sooo... do you think prison rape is an issue that's not being taken seriously?

    If the think the data isn't accurate, what do you think the correct number is?

  • Just an Engineer||

    Man you guys are trolling him hard for a valid point he made. It sounds like you have a personal stake in the issue. Where you released from prison recently?

    It's not at all unreasonable to question the results of a survey especially one conducted amoungst a population as unreliable as prison inmates. It's like surveys of elementary school children, they lack the impulse control to answer a survey seriously. I suppose you also believe the media when they claim that survey results have proven that 75% of 8th graders are sexually active.

  • MWG||

    Yea, I kinda feel bad for him at this point, which is why I asked him the question of whether or not he thinks it's a legitimate issue.

    OTOH, if you go back and read his original comment and the way he worded it, he sort of brought it on himself... this being the H&R comment section and all.

  • ||

    "he sort of brought it on himself... this being the H&R comment section and all."

    No, you just assumed that your reading comprehension was better than it is, and are now blaming me. Like I said, cancer, you, etc...

  • MWG||

    So you do believe prison rape is an issue being ignored by the government?

  • ||

    "Sooo... do you think prison rape is an issue that's not being taken seriously?

    If the think the data isn't accurate, what do you think the correct number is?"

    I think your initial comments indicate you're someone I would wish cancer upon rather than have a conversation with.

  • Fire Tiger||

    "...you are someone I would wish cancer upon rather than have a conversation with."

    Says the person who continues to post again and again and again...

  • Fire Tiger||

    My name is Fire Tiger and I do NOT approve of this post. Stinking troll.

  • Fire Tiger||

    MY name is Fire Tiger and I do NOT approve THIS post /\ !!

  • MWG||

    So based on your total dodge, I'll assume my original assumption was correct.

  • Blappo's Intellectual Superior||

    Blappo previously: "Prisoners lie, so believing them then reporting their lies as reliable is dumb."

    Blappo:"you assume some other point I didn't even attempt to make?"

    Assume...not really. You see, assume requires the absence of proof. More accurately, we "inferred" that you "implied" something by your statement.

    It is not a quantum leap to infer that you don't believe prison rape (especially involving staff) is not a serious issue when you make comments explicitly stating that the inmates are lying.

    I will break it down for you.
    Ready?

    1. If they are lying, as you say, then their allegations of staff sexual abuse is made up.

    2. If it is made up, then it doesn't exist.

    3. If it doesn't exist then we should not be concerned with it because it is not an issue.

    Do you see how we came to infer such a thing? It is really quite reasonable. Inferring something reasonable from your statement is not making a straw man argument.

    I guess now you have to make up another reason why we just don't understand your argument.

    BTW: I suggest you pick up a dictionary and a GED before you call other people ignorant, you diseased rhinoceros pizzle.

  • ||

    COme on, I didn't say anything about law and order, my objection is believing surveys from people who have a vested interest in making the people the survey references look bad. Save the straw man stupidity, thanks.

  • Warty||

    Why is the government doing so little to end sexual assault in prisons?

    Because prison rape is hilarious to the idiots who vote, that's why.

    corrections officials whose job it is to keep inmates safe.

    You're just pretending to believe that, right?

  • ||

    You know, if we just moved to an Escape From New York/No Escape open-air prison scenario, we could both get rid of the prison guard unions and remove the staff member rape. Win for everyone. Except the prison guards, but fuck them anyway.

  • ||

    I'm okay with that. Let's send them all to Manhattan and wall off the island from the rest of us.

    Too bad Isaac Hayes died, because I'd suggest imprisoning him there, too. No, no reason.

  • ||

    So you're saying you want to wall up Manhattan and seal all the Scientologists in there?

  • ||

    Nah, I believe in the freedom of religious scams.

  • ||

    Depends if there is a volcano under Manhattan.

  • ||

    I wonder if we could make one if there isn't?

  • ||

    I heard there is a bunch of sludge that has been made up of years of oils from blacktops, cars, etc. All you need is a match . . .

  • ||

    A big mountain right where the island is would be great for tourism, don't you think?

  • Untermensch||

    Gandy Finch (Hayes' role in Rockford Files) would have owned Manhattan.

  • ||

    Great. Add that to his Duke of New York, and I think Hayes would've made a fine addition to Manhattan prison.

  • TANSTAAFL||

    What's your answer?

    Get a new President.

  • ||

    Venezuala is already achieving this.
    http://video.nytimes.com/video.....adise.html

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Attorney General Eric Holder has not shown leadership on this issue.

    I simply cannot believe that.

  • Warty||

  • ||

    The hand pushing the other hand back down has haunted me for years. It's so gentle. And thus, disturbing.

  • Dave||

  • Warty||

  • Dave||

    I'm not sure what I would concede to that other than some form of irony.

  • Warty||

    Some youtube kid was immensely clever by youtube standards. I got annoyed at the interruptions after a while, though.

  • Fire Tiger||

    at least 216,600 inmates were victimized in 2008 alone
    It’s easy to feel numbed by the Justice Department’s estimate that almost 600 prisoners are sexually victimized each day.

    I have a sneaky suspicion someones math is off. You can't divide the total number of victims, 216,600, by the number days, 365, arrive at 593.42 and conclude almost 600 inmates are sexually victimized each day.

  • Brett L||

    Why would the assailants be more likely to choose one day than another?

  • Fire Tiger||

    Actually the logic problem is they are convoluting two numbers and drawing an invalid conclusion.

    Its' like me saying 5 people ate dinner in my house last year, there fore 0.0137 people ate dinner each day. If that were true, my grocery budget would be a heck of alot less.

  • Warty||

    It's reasonable to assume that rape is uniformly distributed with respect to time. At least in the absence of STEVE SMITH, that is.

  • Ted S.||

    True, but the prisoners are probably being raped repeatedly. If each of the 216,600 gets raped 10 times a year, that's closer to 6000 a day being raped.

  • Warty||

    A good point. We'll be pedants and say that 600 inmates are being turned out daily, then.

  • Highway||

    Or better to say that another 600 inmates get assaulted each day.

  • Fire Tiger||

    Well, even STEVE SMITH has shown a propensity to rape a person more than once. In fact there are some people STEVE SMITH has raped on an almost daily basis, throwing the number of victims per year/ days of year = number of victims per day equation even further out of wack.

  • Warty||

    After STEVE SMITH rapes you, you're no longer really you. Thus, STEVE SMITH only rapes you once.

  • ||

    When I did juvenile persecutions for Mohave County, I intentionally tried to avoid sending kids to Black Canyon. You see, there was a problem with the staff fucking the kids and I kind of felt bad about sending a kid to go get raped.

  • Name Nomad||

    "Juvenile persecutions." A telling Freudian slip there!

  • alan||

    That is so fucked up.

  • Amakudari||

    juvenile persecutions

    Well, probably more accurate than the original.

  • alan||

    I was once asked at a party why I rejected buying into a local muni bonds and I voiced opposition to having any statist shit in my portfolio. The way I was asked, 'why do feel no allegiance to our way of life?'

    I thought it an odd speculation based on very little info dropped, but there it was -- an assumption with a grain of truth.

    This is why I have no allegiance to our 'way of life.' These everyday compromises with what should be acceptable are not only expected of you, but you are met with hostility when you don't affirm them.

  • alan||

    Man, do I hate this tiny editing field can't change a word without dropping another one. 'Preview' has only made it worse. Who does corrections after a read through then previews a second time?

  • ||

    Don't know about you, but I can expand the comment box. There's a little arrow in the lower right-hand corner.

  • alan||

    Nope. Does that show up in Firefox 4? Maybe I should stop hitting later when the update box pops up.

    BTW, Epi, I'm sure you have heard about the Microsoft presentation at e3 stating developers will need to adopt HTML5 and Javascript(lol-wtf) for Windows 8.

    My reaction. There has to be a communications mistake. No way they are dropping .net support as the backbone of future development. They have to much invested in it to slag off something that has been central to their own success in the development community. Even so, it would be technically impossible to prevent apps from being developed in C and C++ that work in the Windows 8 environment. Maybe the PR department overstated? WTF?

  • alan||

    (I base that on Apple's losing track record of attempting to limit development to their own tool set and not succeeding because a programmer using C has access to the same hardware driver calls that they do.)

  • ||

    That's what I'm using, FF 4.

  • alan||

    Updating as we speak. Thanks for the tip.

  • ||

    You're welcome! I only noticed the feature a week or two ago. The box can be made friggin' huge, if that's what you want.

  • Amakudari||

    FF4 and Chrome both can expand textareas. Naturally, IE's only contribution is tacking on a grayed-out scrollbar, which further compresses the available area. What a stupid browser.

    Also, the MS comment doesn't imply to me that they are eschewing compiled languages for HTML5 and JS. It'll probably mean those tools can be used for more stuff off the web, but they're obviously inadequate for a lot of things.

  • ||

    I worked in Arizona juvenile detention for 2 years. The only adult abusers were the FEMALE staff who couldn't keep their stinking paws off the boys' privates.
    Oh, pardon me, I just criticized our 'so dedicated' female staff in juvenile detention centers.

  • ||

    Send me back in time and sign me the fuck up.

  • mr simple||

    You might want to take a look at them before you sign up. Not a lot of models signing up for prison guard duty irl.

  • rather||

    I can see the movie now:

    Instead of faking you're in HS to 2.0 your great sport moment; you fake you're a jeuvie to relive the sex you missed out on.

    BTW, the school plot still works if you want to get laid by a teacher; it's a mandatory prerequisite for graduation

  • ||

    "That song was 'Put Him in the Hole', the new song by Rape Factory!"

  • Leigh||

    What took the DoJ so long to figure out what the Red Cross, and other blood donating agencies already knew? Every donation, I'm asked, "Have you ever been in jail for more that 72 hours?"

  • ||

    My response to the donation screener:

    Does my job count?

  • Hugh Akston||

    Aresen|6.20.11 @ 5:21PM|#

    My response to the donation screener:

    My entire country is a prison.

    FTFY

  • ||

    Speak for yourself, Mr. Citizen-of-the-country-with-the-Highest-incarceration-rate-in-the-world.

  • ||

    Don't mess with us, Aresen. When we go full tyranny, just where, exactly, do you think we're going to send our convicts?

  • ||

    Some hell-hole with no culture, full of violent criminals, toxic soil and foul air or a pestilential swamp regularly pounded by giant storms and inhabited by blind geezers driving big cars.

    IOW, New Jersey and Florida.

  • ||

    Well, let's think about that. Where did another large, totalitarian nation send its prisoners to? The balmy Crimea? Or was it the Canada of Asia--Siberia?

    Knocking Florida is silly. A third of your population is down here at any given moment in the winter.

    The parts of New Jersey near New York? Well, you've got us there.

  • ||

    We'll be sending the really violent offenders to Vancouver, of course.

  • Hugh Akston||

    The long-awaited Snake Plisken threequel will be called Escape From Canada, and the promo poster will feature Kurt Russell surfing on a walrus surfing on an ice floe as Toronto looms in the background.

  • ||

    OK, enough with the Maple-sucking-puck-slapper insults!

    *Start turning valve on oil pipeline.*

    "Hey, somebody get the switch on that hydro line!"

  • ||

    S-s-s-sorry, man. Just kidding. We love you and your marijuana flag--really!

  • ||

    For the record, I was rooting for the Canucks. I'm a Tampa fan and can't abide Boston. That's probably more of a baseball issue than a hockey one, but they annoyed me during the playoffs, too.

  • Mensan||

    ^THIS

  • ||

    the promo poster will feature Kurt Russell surfing on a flaming walrus surfing on an exploding ice floe as Toronto looms in the background.

    FTFY.

    (Bay is directing, right?)

  • Almanian||

    Australia? Oh, wait, no...

  • ||

    Been there, done that.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Send 'em to Branson, Pro.

  • ||

    Send 'em to Branson, Pro.

    You heartless motherfucker.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    To the Yakov Smirnov Theatre with him!

  • Terry G||

    The TPTB would like nothing but this model for detainment. It works to their best interests for controlling and manipulating society, therefor people who don't want end up in that situation will become unwilling slaves of the system.

  • Almanian||

    See, another reason not to do anything wrong. Cause if you've done nothing wrong, you have nothing to fear!

    Simple.

    Fucking libertardian criminal lovers...

  • alan||

    The old saying, 'you couldn't get laid in a women's prison with a hand full of pardons.' Well, it is not true. You very much can get laid that way! Even Libertarians. That is why we love criminals because they represent hope. That even for us, someone is willing to touch us in that special way.

  • ||

    Ha!

  • Gil||

    A lot of Libertarians know their stash will be found out sooner or later.

  • albatross||

    Indeed, so assiduous are the drug enforcement police in the US, that if necessary, they will even bring the stash to your home and plant it themselves.

  • ||

    Gulags!11!

  • Some Guy||

    In 2009 Holder essentially rejected standards recommended by a bipartisan commission that spent years studying the problem of prisoner rape, claiming that the recommendations—which included limits on cross-gender supervision and the loosening of deadlines for survivors to file formal grievances—would have been too expensive.

    It's good to see he's so concerned with prisons being too expensive. I look forward to his announcement that all those locked up for non-violent non-crimes will be pardoned.

  • Amakudari||

    No no no, see, the goal is lower costs per prisoner, not lower total costs.

    After all, the lower we can get those per-unit costs, the more we can lock up.

  • Fire Tiger||

    Damn, this article reads like a Feministing post.
    1) Math logic error
    2) Statistics quoted from an unsourced paper.
    3) Convoluting numbers to make an issue seem worse (tell rape story then include number that totals one inmate grabbing anothers ass with repeated gang rapes)
    4) etc. etc.

    On a side note according to this earlier DOJ paper, of the 88,500 current inmates who had been sexually assaulted in prison, 46,171 of them had been assaulted by a female correction officer. Nice to know the whole horny female correction officer fantasy has some basis in reality.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Fuck Feministing.

  • Some Guy||

    Nice to know the whole horny female correction officer fantasy has some basis in reality.

    I suspect that said female correction officers may differ in appearance from those in your fantasy.

  • Fire Tiger||

    "I suspect that said female correction officers may differ in appearance from those in your fantasy."

    Well then you don't know MY fantasy, then!

  • Harley||

    Also, a lot of those assaults are not the cool porno variety. More like a Abu Ghraib nightstick-in-the-ass variety.

  • Fire Tiger||

    "More like a Abu Ghraib nightstick-in-the-ass variety."

    I say again...Well then you don't know MY fantasy, then!

  • Fire Tiger||

    Whoooo Hooooo, I have my first internet stalker under this handle.

  • Fire Tiger||

    You really are going have to do better than to try and mock me for potentially having anal centric fantasies.

  • Fire Tiger||

    The problem is the writer does not distinguishing between consensual sexual relations and the "nightstick-in-the-ass" variety. If an inmate has been locked up for 20 years and a female guard offers to spread her legs for them, I find it difficult to feel sorry for the inmate. And that is the problem I have with this article. It uses the same logic that has been used to create laws that see no difference between an 18 year old sleeping with his 17 year old girlfriend with a 45 year old molesting a 3 year old.

  • dennis||

    Prison rape is likely far more common than this article suggests. Prison rape is extra judicial punishment, but even more it is the sort of display of incredible power by which the state asserts itself against us all. Any interaction with a cop could potentially lead to gang rape if you don't play your cards right, and you know this. Therefore you are more apt to respect the cop's authoritah. Rape, whether of prisoners or sex workers is one of the many tools all governments (even those in nice social democratic countries) use to make sure we know who's boss.

  • ||

    It's worse than that. In many States, failure to pay child support will get you put into the pokey. Unfortunately...if you lose your job, you have to petition to Court for relief. You ex-wife's lawyer will file repeated requests for a continuance...so the child support you can't pay piles up while she delays your day in court. Meanwhile, any professional licenses or State-issued credentials are revoked while you're a "deadbeat dad," which does not exactly enhance your ability to get another job.

    Heck...as far as that goes, the VAWA makes it he-said/she-said/he-goes-to-jail.

    I've been mostly happily married for 15 years, but I'd never get married again, and I plan to urge my sons never to get married. To do otherwise is the same kind of child abuse as not warning your kids to avoid drugs/cigarettes. You're one vengeful ex-wife and one event of bad luck away from getting raped. Literally.

  • crystal jewelry||

    fuck! dirty police!

  • aimeng||

    come here get a perfect crystal jewelry for your family members and your friends!

  • ||

    crystal jews trolololol

  • Technomad||

    Personally, I've always said the best way to get through prison would be absolute solitary...no contact with other prisoners from the moment one gets there to the moment one is released. Keeps them from teaching each other how to commit crimes better, too.

  • ||

    The punishment for murder should be watching an episode of 'According to Jim', or a Keith Olbermann report. Beats the electric chair, since you won't have to pay anything for them to lunge a knife into their own throats after the experience.

  • Josh||

    We have laws against cruel and unusual punishment in this country, sir!

  • albatross||

    Well, this is a good idea except for that bit about how really long duration solitary confinement drives a lot of people insane.

  • ||

    OT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSEYXWmEse8&NR=1

    Try these on the statists you meet

  • ||

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....ion_962545

    5:38- is what I'd say to every shitbag politician that bitches about being unappreciated for all his achievements

  • Edwin||

    so you secretly want to viciously insult everybody?

    Because you DO realize that the vast majority of people are statists

    you do realize you have an issue, right?

  • mbt en france||

    babay!!

  • sydney escorts||

    You're asking why the government doing so little to end sexual assault in prisons??? LOL :D I thought this was very obvious. Criminals can rape each other senselessly, they deserve what they get!!!!!

  • ||

    People are sent to prison AS punishment, not FOR punishment. Furthermore, there are innocent people who are wrongly convicted. Commenters who are making light of prison rape should imagine their own son wrongly convicted or incarcerated because of a minor offense.

  • Aimeng Jewelry||

    good article, keep moving!

  • ||

    Why is there no link to the US DOJ report as a citation? Not only am I not finding a recent report that could be considered the "first ever" (http://nicic.gov/Library/Topic/253-inmate-sexual-assault

  • albatross||

    Yeah, this article should have had links to all its source documents inside. The web is not paper--here, there are no ultimate length restrictions and it costs nothing to link to your sources.

  • ||

    In feminist America nobody cares if men are raped.Only women are considered human beings.

  • JOR||

    Feminists are often incredibly horrible on the issue male rape (on men by men, of course, but especially on men raped by women), but: 1) Most non-feminists don't give a fuck about male rape victims either, and 2) pre-feminist societies didn't and don't give a fuck about male rape, except perhaps to shame or punish the victims for sodomy. Feminists are not responsible for the incredibly fucked up attitudes most people have toward male rape victims, though it's certainly fair to call out the ones that share those attitudes (or go one worse out of tribalistic hatred of men). And to be fair, feminists' attitudes can be uniquely frustrating because if anyone should know better, it's them.

  • ||

    That is simply not true. Or it isn't true of every feminist I've ever known. In fact, in 1975 as a volunteer for the Rape Crisis Centre of the day, my second case was of a man who had been raped....gang raped as they would say now....

    Feminists understood early in the days of making ANY sexual assualt unacceptable that men had stories to tell too. We also understood we couldn't tell them for you. It was not easy watching our sons, brothers, sometimes fathers...travel through terribly difficult lives, not yet ready to tell their stories out loud.

    Then in late '80's a book came out called Broken Boys, Broken Men.....by a man about men! It became a best seller in the therapeutic crowd instantly. I know I gave at least a dozen copies away to men I knew were hurting. But still they didn't speak out....not really.

    I think the big breakout event was Tyler Perry's courageous self-disclosure. So proud of him!!

    And now I think men will begin....as the survivors of the residential schools, as those who've been in prisons are starting to do.....to tell their story and then do something about it so it won't happen to their grandsons.

    Feminists do not hate men.....to say so is to show how unthinking your life must be.

  • ||

    this breathless reporting is foolish.

    self reporting by inmates is, by definition lies--and consider the fact that sex with an inmate is a felony in most states and prisons, even jails have elaborate camera observation and little opportunity for the kind of misconduct claimed.

    i am a jail doctor and have been for 20 years--i also find that many inmates certainly at least the 2 percent that the report is based on, lie, lie, lie and claim all kinds of things to get sympathy from family and friends and such. that's why in some sectors you have so many mommas who think their sons are being abused and are in jail because of racism and unfair law enforcement and all kinds of other things.

    when a man spends enough time in jail the only people left to feel sorry for him are elitist journalists and advocates working a political agenda and their momma, who never gives up thinking their baby was wrongly incarcerated and is regularly being abused.

    Reason should be ashamed for not seeing the reason this is the first report of sex abuse in prisons becasue the Holder DOJ is anti law enforcement and elitist in vision. and to rely on self reporting of kids and adults in corrections--how naive.

  • ||

    this breathless reporting is foolish.

    self reporting by inmates is, by definition lies--and consider the fact that sex with an inmate is a felony in most states and prisons, even jails have elaborate camera observation and little opportunity for the kind of misconduct claimed.

    i am a jail doctor and have been for 20 years--i also find that many inmates certainly at least the 2 percent that the report is based on, lie, lie, lie and claim all kinds of things to get sympathy from family and friends and such. that's why in some sectors you have so many mommas who think their sons are being abused and are in jail because of racism and unfair law enforcement and all kinds of other things.

    when a man spends enough time in jail the only people left to feel sorry for him are elitist journalists and advocates working a political agenda and their momma, who never gives up thinking their baby was wrongly incarcerated and is regularly being abused.

    Reason should be ashamed for not seeing the reason this is the first report of sex abuse in prisons becasue the Holder DOJ is anti law enforcement and elitist in vision. and to rely on self reporting of kids and adults in corrections--how naive.

  • قبلة الوداع||

    ThaNk u MaN

  • منتديات العراق||

  • قبلة الوداع||

    ThaNk U

  • ||

    They probably think this counts as a deterrent or something, if you go to jail you will get raped, so don't commit crimes. In this situation, the government would essentially be using inmates to intimidate people from committing crimes. Philosophically, crimes shouldn't be committed out of morality, not out of fear. I know that it's idealistic, but should a person believe that they shouldn't murder because it's immoral or because they could get the death penalty? I think that the same applies here to a lesser extent.

  • ||

    People go to jail for all sorts of reasons. I spoke with a fellow who was involved in the civil rights protests back in the 60s; he was tossed into prison for "trespassing" or some other nonsense charge. While there, he heard boys loudly protesting being raped.

    It is stupid to characterize all prisoners as liars. If you find yourself tempted to dehumanize people in this manner, you should take a long hard look in the mirror, and see if you can try becoming a man, if it's not too late.

  • ||

    I was gang raped repeatedly in the mens jail at age 19. Jails are understaffed and under funded. Inmates called trustees run alot of the jail. Cameras are only on a few checkpoints. When you have 1 guard who oversees 6 tiers, and the guard is a black with gang ties, he basically lets the blacks do as they wish. That would include staying away from a tier for along period of time, while the big black inmates take the new smaller white boy to the back of the tier, and while pinned down, rape his ass for hours on end. Thats what happened to me, and once there, it is cold calculated and there is no way out, and no one to save you. All the screams in the world get ignored.

  • دردشة زين العراق||

  • ||

    Saw Nat Geo's special on solitary confinement, coupled with what we now know about ADHD, it is almost like we've been swindled into paying for a penal system that does the exact opposite of what we want it to do. The system takes non-violent people and makes them violent. It purposely goes after the weakest and most wretched among us, and bullies them into behaving in ways that end up costing them additional years, almost as if they were targets for extension before they walked in. We have got to change this system...camps instead of prisons or something, and less people being jailed for first offenses, the United States is way out of kilter (from my reading on wikipedia).
    I keep thinking of how we exclude people based on things we were taught through the televison set, but the same corporations who put together our television programming are the ones guilty of so much crime that we are also expected to excuse them from. We need to put some corporations in jail, and get our heads examined for what we believe are laws strong enough to make people not want to do certain things: some people have a hard time controlling their impulses, prisons are proof. We don't expect young people whose brains are not fully formed to live up to adult standards, but we have no problem putting away an adult who hasn't learned how to use their brain, and then excluding them from any further education. it's insane to think what we are doing is working, we know it isn't, but we lack the political will to change it. We have to find some way to energize the community to force change from the bottom up...the politicians will never lead us on this, we have to make them react by forming effective demands. This obviously doesn't work coming from the prisoners, as we recently saw in Pelican Bay...corporations and government will only cover their asses, not fix problems, unless forced to.

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