Human Rights Badasses

{August 13, 2007}   Cebu: I knew dance would save the world someday

This is just really cool. Not like nose-thumbing-badass, but really cool. A prison in the Philippines started teaching dances to the 1500 prisoners, and it reduced the number of fights they’re having, plus it’s pretty entertaining. Several of the inmates are openly gay.  Look up the videos on youtube – my favorites are Thriller and Hail Holy Queen from Sister Act.

Prisons need a lot of work, I think. I get pissed when rapists and sex traffickers and johns don’t get enough prison time, but maybe I’m looking at it wrong to begin with. Maybe the amount of prison time shouldn’t be proportional only to the degree of shittiness of the crime, but to something more practical and more directly related to what will keep the crime from happening again. Because I don’t think prison actually works as a deterrent as much as it’s supposed to. I don’t think deterrents work very well in general. They work on people like me (not that I’m so great, just that I’m not into getting punished), but there are a lot of people out there who think they can get away with it and who want to do illegal stuff that badly, and they’re kinda right, you can get away with a lot of stuff.

Look at pedophiles, for instance. Their recidivism rates are pretty high, not like every one of them repeats, but like half do, I think. There’s a debate over whether it’s a disease, something they can’t help. Kinda looks like it is to me, at least partially. I don’t want to treat child abuse lightly at all, but I think we need to revisit our system and figure out stuff that WORKS.

I still get angry, though, when judges give rapists and child abusers short sentences because they don’t consider the crime very bad.

Another problem is prison rape. I think it’s disgraceful that prisons don’t do whatever is necessary to keep that from happening, and according to feministing, they don’t even watch out for trans prisoners, who are targeted more.

So anyway, there’s some good news coming from a prison, and something is working, or at least keeping them from beating each other up. : ) I’d like to see a trend like that.


coffee says:

everybody appreciates a well planned party… with synchronized dancing of course

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