Why prison is the new slavery


antwuan sparks, Op-Ed Writer

Slavery was one of the darkest times in our country’s history because it showed what America was willing to do for money. Prison was meant to rehabilitate these inmates and give them a second chance at life.
Sadly, in recent years we have failed in rehabilitating these prisoners. Instead, these inmates are treated as machines were forced to work for little to no money.
For instance, attorney Nardini Williams said, “A piece-price system developed in the 18th century was a way where a big market or brander or investor would invest into a prison and the prisoners would work long hard hours while not getting paid for their work.”
What a coincidence that we use systems that are so outdated, and then on top of that, a system developed in the most evil time in our history. Along with this corrupt system, the 18th century was the peak of The Atlantic Slave Trade.
Even the living conditions give a 18th century vibe, especially since it is so similar to slavery.
Let us not forget about the conditions in which the “prisoners” are living in. They are treated as property, with no mental help whatsoever and even the actual conditions are horrible.
The US Justice Department wrote in 2018, “75,000 people in the US are held in solitary confinement on average where most prison suicides happen. Three to eight percent of the nation’s prison population accounts to 35 percent of the nations’ suicide rates.”
The US Justice Department also wrote that, “22 national prisons hold more than double their own capacity (America leads the world among other nations in prison overloads at 310 percent).”
Pathetic. Just pathetic. The place in which these prisoners are supposed to be reevaluating their lives they’re worked to death and then crammed into tiny rooms like cards in a card deck.
Then prison guards throw them into dark rooms and barely feed them, and prisoners end up killing themselves. It is very similar to the slave ships during The Middle Passage days.
The similarities between slaves and inmates are so similar it’s scary. Sometimes the pain is so unbearable, both take their own life or revolt in various ways. Slaves and prisoners were in such tight corners they practically breathe in the sweat flying off their fellow inmates.
The most unforgiving part is the fact that some of the people in prison aren’t supposed to be there in the first place. For example, George Stinney Jr. was just a 14 year old boy who was convicted as a murderer and was sentenced to death after being taken to a jail and being harassed for hours by cops.
Prison has evolved into a evil place run by corruption and greed, sadly the prison system is broken and there’s no hope in fixing it.