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110

He seems to have meant amending it (quote below) to remove the clause permitting slavery and forced labour as punishment for a crime. So let us ask this possibly dicey question: What, exactly, was Kanye trying to say? There is a fair chance he was referring to what’s called the 13th Amendment’s “exception clause,” as many speculated on Twitter. It’s the ...


28

West later clarified that he thinks that the 13th amendment is "slavery in disguise", so it seems fair to say that he does not want to return to race-based slavery. Given West's other recent comments and his further explanations in the linked video, it doesn't seem that he has a very clear message yet. As he puts it, it's a "work in progress" based on his ...


25

In the United States you have Federal and State prison systems fall under Dual Sovereignty Doctrine which gives separate Jurisdiction of crimes to each state in which the crime was committed and the Federal government if it involves two or more states. Because of this, each state administers its own legal system including a prison system that is separate ...


21

There are several things at play that cause the US prison system to look pretty crummy in comparison to several other countries. General societal hostility toward ex-convicts(Likely the most significant factor): Outside of a few states that have 'banned the box', many convicts have enormous difficulty finding work, finding a place to rent. Even if they ...


13

I'm wondering about both the separation of federal prisons and state prisons, and the separation of the former prisons to county jails. Are there political factors that influence how that separation is used, and that it exists in the first place? This is mostly a function of who pays for the very high cost of keeping someone incarcerated (typically $25,...


11

What do the statistics mean? Are Norwegian prisons more effective than United States prisons? These statistics do not exist in a vacuum. Prisons have very little to do with rates of first offense. To the extent that deterrence matters, it is far more a result of law enforcement. In particular, the chance of punishment has a greater deterring effect than ...


8

Yes This topic is quite delicate and politically contentious, but there seems to be some sort of consensus in the direction of "Yes, minorities are not treated in an equal and just manner by the US Judicial System". According to the good people at the ACLU: There are significant racial disparities in sentencing decisions in the United States. ...


8

It's long had a lot of support, but not the level of bipartisan support among politicians we've recently seen. That's not entirely accurate. As far as I'm aware, criminal justice reforms have been supported by big-wig figures on the right of the spectrum for a while (of the famous ones, Newt Gingrich from traditional and social conservative corner and Rand ...


5

In Germany, there are two factors at work: Prosecutors, judges, and parole boards have some discretion if they send or keep a suspect or convict in prison. While they are supposed to look only at the particulars of the case, overcrowding and a high workload might let them dismiss cases that would otherwise lead to prison sentences. When suspects are tried ...


5

Can a US President realistically pardon enough people to sway an election? It is not likely such pardons it would have much effect. According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, as of 15 February 2020, there were 141,593 U.S. citizens in Federal Correctional Institutions throughout the U.S. The total popular vote for Trump and Clinton, in 2016, was 128,838,...


5

In the UK, this is regulated by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act. Under the act an applicant does not need to disclose any spent convictions for most roles. Convictions become "spent" depending on the sentence given. Cautions and non-custodial convictions become spent most quickly. Custodial sentences of over 2½ years never become spent. The age at which ...


4

It depends on what you want to achieve - there are differing schools on why punishments would work, and it affects the means on how you achieve those goals. Preventing repeat crimes - protecting society from the violent criminal: aside from incarceration it can be achieved by death sentence or exile - e.g. "transportation" in the old British Empire, or the ...


4

While highly unlikely in the U.S. today, it seems to me there is historical evidence to support an argument it is theoretically possible for a pardon to substantially impact elections. In 1990 South African President F. W. de Klerk released a political prisoner, Nelson Mandela. In 1964, Mandela had be been sentenced to life imprisonment. 1994 Mandela ...


4

When Kanye tweeted that, he didn't mean actually getting rid of the entire 13th amendment and returning to race-based slavery. Most prisons are privately owned. These owners are paid by the state to force their prisoners to build roads, bridges, buildings, etc., along with other back-breaking laborious tasks. The prisoners aren't provided any form of reward ...


3

I think he's referred to what's happening inside US private prisons. Perhaps he means to get rid of private prisons? That's what we did in New Zealand at Mount Eden high sec in Auckland after someone died there. Private prisons don't make a whole lot of sense. They do encourage incarceration though! :) Update Paul's answer sounds about right: amend it to ...


3

In the Netherlands, employers can ask for a Certificate of Conduct (Verklaring Omtrent Gedrag, VOG). The department of justice will, given the role the person is applying for, determine if there is any objection to be found in the criminal record of the person applying. If that person has no criminal record, the VOG is always granted. If there is a criminal ...


3

The Iowa Supreme Court hired a professor from the University of Northern Iowa to study sentencing to see if there was a dependence on race/ethnicity. The only dependence he found was for aggravated misdemeanors. Two friends (now retired) looked at the prison data one for the Board of Parole and the other for Department of Corrections and I independently did ...


3

I work with CJS data from Iowa and Iowa has a very large racial disparity (primarily because of drug and violent offenses). The question was about nonviolent sentencing disparities and the only such sentence I noticed in the prison data is for multiple violations of driving while barred. In Iowa there are more than 50 ways to lose your drivers license and ...


2

Yes, New York can require prisoners to work. The New York Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) oversees prisons, parole, and other parts of the criminal justice system in the state of New York. Within DOCCS, the Correctional Industries program oversees vocational programs. These are programs that allow inmates to work as part of ...


2

Here's a sort of "trick" answer, which let us hope is, and remains, entirely imaginary. Yes, the pardoned might sway an election, but indirectly, and only if the pardoned persons have certain attributes: The pardoned are eager to immediately work for the incumbent. The pardoned are highly skilled and capable criminals. The pardoned are specifically skilled ...


2

The answer to this will be gradual rather than "black and white." A prison is inherently a coercive institution and what may be seen as "denial of incentives" could equally be seen as "punishments" if one takes getting those incentives as the default state. In Germany, prisoners get the "opportunity" to work and/or do vocational training and the output of ...


1

There are no constitutional limits on the number of pardons that a president can issue. But there is very little evidence of three key points There is no reason to think that the large number of federal prisoners who are suddenly released would line up to vote for the president. Especially a Republican president, given how racially polarised both the ...


1

The criminal justice system was not designed and instead it emerged thousands of years ago and all criminal procedures were managed at the local level. According to the legal historians when the American Colonies were established the larger colonies were subdivided by counties and all counties has the same criminal code. Except for judges who were in a ...


1

US transfers two Syrian Guantanamo detainees to Portugal, according to DW (dated 29-12-2009): Two Syrian detainees held at the US detention center at Guantanamo Bay have been handed over to Portuguese authorities. The US Department of Justice said in a statement that the transfer had been coordinated between the two governments to ensure security, and that ...


1

Have any countries' governments friendly to the USA indicated a willingness to accept Guantanamo detainees? I think so, but with a little inducement (though not really a favour to the country in particular): only if Guantanamo Bay gets closed down. The country I'm talking about is the Netherlands. They have shown a willingness (though no hard promises) but ...


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