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The Ethics of Prisons

How should we treat prisoners?

Should the purpose of prison be primarily punitive or corrective?  Currently in the U.S. prisons primarily warehouse people ... remove them from society, let them fend for themselves.  That is expensive enough ... but correcting whatever behavior put them there may (or may not) pay for itself if it makes a productive citizen.  But should this issue be decided by cost analysis?  Or is there an ethical requirement?

Should "corrective" measures happen before the crime happens?  What works?


Socrates Cafe is a Philosophy discussion group that  meets every 1st and 3rd Wednesday in the Community Room at Earth Fare, on Pelham Rd at I-85.  We usually have about 10-15 attendees.  (You can't trust the RSVPs because regulars don't bother to RSVP anymore!) 


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