Kids in Lockdown

Prison sentences for petty drug crimes increase the number of jailed women, who are more likely to be single parents than men:

“A lot of women who probably wouldn’t have gone to prison before are now going in for Class 4 drug felonies — the least serious felonies,” Dr. LaLonde said, referring to crimes that in some instances had previously resulted in nothing more than probation.

Studies show that about 75 percent of imprisoned women across the country are mothers, most of whom had custody of their children before their incarceration.

In response to the growing number of young children with incarcerated parents, California decided to invite kids into prison with their mothers. One San Diego center that houses convicted mothers and their children is currently being investigated for neglect:

For instance, one inmate, Marsha Strickland, complained to the staff about her 5-year-old daughter’s blinding headaches and constant nausea for at least six weeks before the girl was allowed a hospital visit in January, according to accounts by inmates and former staff members. The child is now living with relatives and undergoing treatment for brain cancer.

Jacob Sullum on the thousands in prison for pot here and calling out Congress on its crackbrained crack sentencing laws here.

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  • SugarFree||

    The building tension of which side of this issue gets to scream IT'S FOR THE CHILDREN first is killing me.

  • ||

    What are fathers, worthless chopped liver? Don't children matter when their fathers are incarcerated? Why can't dads use their kids for a get out of jail free card? The sexism of our criminal justice system is amazing.

  • ||

    We must take mothers away from children. For the children.

  • ||

    I just finished reading about San Pedro prison. The Bolivians are way ahead of us on this one.

  • ||

    Why dont we just hand them over to their Big Brother.

  • ||

    Well, if we had universal health care this wouldn't have happened.

  • Grand Chalupa||

    Off topic, the first ever evidence for the existence of God

    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/

  • ||

    The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.
    ~H. L. Mencken


    Our government throws too many people in prison. Our politicians and bureaucrats refuse to talk about that--addressing the effects (fucked over kids) instead of the causes (aggressive and draconian legal system throwing too many parents in prison, for too long, for committing victimless "crimes").

    OBEY!

  • ||

    who are more likely to be single parents than men:

    How is that even possible? Are these women spontaneously spawning like hammerheads now?

  • The Wine Commonsewer®||

    The standard in America in the new century is joint custody which makes both parents single parents.

    I also want to know whose brilliant idea it was to lock up the kids for the crimes of the mother, which is essentially what the program does. And if this is such a great idea why aren't we doing it for male prisoners?

    Mrs TWC's twin sister is a shrink social worker who deals with females with drug problems and children. In her experience the majority of these women are not casual pot smokers who are simple victims of drug prohibition.

  • Alice Bowie||

    Hey Jamie Kelly ,

    Perhaps u can pay the taxes, food, shelter, health care, etc for these Kids that we take from their Mothers.

    Perhaps we can use your family home to warehouse them.

    Better than that, perhaps we can create Special Prisons to store these displaced children.

    Considering that MOST of these kids are BLACK/LANTINO...There's no high demand for adoption.

    People pay $50,000 to adopt a white baby. I think they'll pay u to adopt a black kid

  • ||

    People pay $50,000 to adopt a white baby. I think they'll pay u to adopt a black kid

    WHEE! RACISM!

    What about me? My father is white my mom is latina. Is a kid with my genetic makeup worth like, 25 grand at least?

  • oh yeah||

    The piece condemns by exception, not the rule, when the brain cancer was not found. Call social services on the prison. They can go in.

    The idea that large groups of people are in jail for minor drug charges doesn't float from my experience, either.

    The point of preschool programs is to get the children AWAY from the home as SOON as possible for as LONG as possible. Some homes don't seem to be teaching some kids the basics to prepare for school, such as colors, 1, 2, 3 and A,B,C, or here's my nose, my eyes, or how to sit down and be still, not bite, hit or have fits, etc.

    I can see the lawsuits in the future for the state letting a child be raised in prison. The cut off from the infant to the whatever is too old to be in the prison is one I don't know. Letting them mother bond to the child seems a good idea, if she is coming out.

    Then again, if prisons are OK, why not let them be the daycare so many people on the outside need. They've let children be born and remain in mental health wards.

  • wsdave||

    Alice,

    My wife and I last year looked into adopting a child of any race we could get. The bar was set too high. She has been divorced, and I gave away a child for adoption 15 years ago. We are considered unfit to adopt unwanted children because of this.

    I wonder how long before they take our genetic child away...

  • ||

    I wonder how long before they take our genetic child away...

    What color is it? I want a plaid one to go with the brindle bulldog.

    In her experience the majority of these women are not casual pot smokers who are simple victims of drug prohibition.

    Lots of info along those lines at: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/

  • ||

    Well, one good thing about this is that if the kid is raised in prison, the adjustment to public schools won't be as hard.

  • ||

    Crimethink wins the thread.

  • The Wine Commonsewer®||

    Cesar, my mother was blond. Does that count for anything? :-)

  • ||

    In Michigan people take in foster kids and then they get first chance to adopt them if relatives won't or can't take them. My neighbors couldn't adopt so they took in foster kids. They got a newborn and adopted her after 2 years. The mom is in prison for 20 years and finally had her parental rights terminated.

  • bourgeois cowboy||

    "What about me? My father is white my mom is latina. Is a kid with my genetic makeup worth like, 25 grand at least?"

    If you're a girl, it's worth a record contract!

  • ||

    I'm part injun!

    (wish I had a dollar for everytime some white trasher's said that to me in earnest)

  • Joshua Holmes||

    What are fathers, worthless chopped liver?

    Seriously, do you think these kids' fathers are around?

  • Police Acadamy Recruiter||

    Some homes don't seem to be teaching some kids the basics to prepare for school, such as ... be still, not bite, hit or have fits, etc.

    I don't foresee that being a problem.

  • ||


    Seriously, do you think these kids' fathers are around?


    Maybe not, but fathers that are around still have difficulty getting custody when the mothers are incarcerated. Which is big problem, in my opinion.

    Back to my original point, I wasn't talking about fathers on the outside. We sure don't give nonviolent male prisoners such kid gloves treatment as described in the article. Do they get billions of dollars in special prisons for them and their children? Special father-child time to "retain family bonds"? Custody retention while in prison? Activists lobbying to keep them out of prison simply because they have children? Heck no. We don't care about them or their children, as if fathers aren't really part of the family, or if they are part of the family they're an unimportant, easily discarded part. Either treat female prisoners as brutally as we treat male prisoners, or (better) treat male prisoners as well as we treat female prisoners. Stop the sexism.

  • ||

    Bob Smith,

    Identical treatment is not equal treatment. That's why equality demands that health insurance be forced to cover birth control pills, and equality also demands that gays and lesbians be able to marry people of the same sex.

    Doesn't make sense? Well, I guess logic is sexist and homophobic sometimes.

  • Randolph Carter||

    Cesar,
    With the supply of LatinoFolks increasing, I would get yourself adopted as soon as possible to safeguard YourValue.

  • TallDave||

    Can't we just put everyone in prison? That would save all kinds of court costs.

  • Deus||

    A 70-year-old US woman has been left bruised and bloody after an unexpected clash with police who came to arrest her because her lawn was dry and brown.



    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6282348.stm

  • ||

    "What about me? My father is white my mom is latina. Is a kid with my genetic makeup worth like, 25 grand at least?"

    Sorry Cesar, 25 pesos is as high as I will go. Take it or leave it.

  • ||

    A 70-year-old US woman has been left bruised and bloody after an unexpected clash with police who came to arrest her because her lawn was dry and brown.

    damn that BBC anyhow...

    "came to arrest her" is off base.

    The cop arrested her for refusing to identify herself so he (the cop) could write her name in the "victim" field of the city's icky-lawn ticket. In this day and age, refusing to identify yourself to the law is a no-no.

    But the cop came to write a ticket, not cuff and drag away a little old lady for having a fucked up lawn.

  • Bubble Headed Bleach Blond Com||

    But the cop came to write a ticket, not cuff and drag away a little old lady for having a fucked up lawn.

    We can do the innuendo
    We can dance and sing
    When its said and done we haven't told you a thing
    We all know that crap is king
    Give us dirty laundry!

    Course, it's still nuts to arrest someone for failure to identify oneself. But, it is difficult to issue a citation to a woman with no name.

    Same thing happens over here in the US with a traffic ticket. You can sign the ticket or you can be arrested. Okay, not exactly the same but you see where I'm going with it.

  • ||

    TWC

    The event that the BBC reported happened in Orem, Utah, which last I checked was "over here in the US".

    Unless the Mormon separatists have achieved a coup I haven't heard about, I'm pretty sure it still is. :)

  • ||

    who are more likely to be single parents than men:
    How is that even possible? Are these women spontaneously spawning like hammerheads now?


    Read it again. It says that women are less likely to be men than to be single parents.

  • Superman||

    Hey, I'm for MORE kids getting locked up. Damned whippersnappers! [waves cane feebly]

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