Solitary confinement is inhumane, counterproductive

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 27, 2013 - 10:08 am

Re "Inhumane abuses, not gangs, drive prison hunger strike" (Viewpoints, Aug. 26): I appreciate the article by Nancy Jones and Cecille Gannon supporting the hunger strike that began with about 30,000 prisoners in California. Both these women have worked with inmates for two decades and I respect their experience.

I agree that our current system has "diverted from the purpose of incarceration to restore someone back to normal healthy life." If someone has to be separated from the general population for a period of time, why not do this in a humane way? Why deprive a person of natural light, nutritional food and rehabilitation? Does it make us feel better to torture?

We are a resourceful and creative people, and I am sure we can find better ways for our inmates to make amends to society than by our acting in a vengeful way toward them. "Violence begets violence." Inhumane treatment toward our prisoners only increases the likelihood of re-offending.

-- Gail Erlandson, Sacramento

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