( looks like my dorm room sophomore year at the U… I was just as sad)
A few days ago, “news” broke than former football great O.J. Simpson was guilty of stealing cookies from the prison cafeteria at the Lovelock Correctional Center, where he is currently serving a 33-year sentence for armed robbery ( follow the link below for the full story). The obvious question would be why is The Juice stealing Oreos? But the question that I want answered is, WHY does O.J. get to eat cookies???
Now, it may seem like an extreme thought process, but I am extremely passionate regarding my opinion on the judicial system here in this country, especially when it comes to prisoner’s rights. As a matter of fact, if it was up to me, jail/prison would not be a place where one can find television, internet access, free education, health care, and a free gym membership- not to mention cookies good enough for a Hall of Famer to steal. In a perfect world, getting locked up gives you a small room to think about what you did, and I might just throw in a book from time to time, and that’s probably going to be a Bible.
Before people start throwing out terms like “basic human rights” and “inhumane conditions”, I’m not saying we should starve the incarcerated and let them die from the common cold, but let’s remember why the majority of them are there in the first place. If you break a law that is significant enough for you to serve time, then you shouldn’t get rewarded with free internet access to set up your match.com profile ( if you can believe it, I was actually contacted by someone in prison on a dating site, who tried to holler). Still think I’m being a bit harsh about this? Take a look below at some of the “amenities” that are provided in numerous prisons around the country, things that you and I have to struggle to pay for, and see if you don’t agree with me:
CABLE TELEVISION: My cable bill last month was $185.00. And I don’t even have NFL Sunday ticket. However, I pay for it because I can do that, and have earned my right to DVR 36 episodes of Bridezillas if I want to. If you’re in jail, you shouldn’t get to watch anything but the back of someone else’s head during roll call. And I’m pretty sure that taxpayers somehow foot the bill for Prisoner #456982’s access to the reruns of Tosh.0 and Law and Order. So you can see how I’d rather pay for my cable bill before theirs.
INTERNET ACCESS: As I mentioned earlier, I received a message from someone from the clink. He didn’t come right out and tell me from the beginning that he was in prison. He roped me in, much like any other player, by showering me with compliments, and telling me we had so much in common. Things got tricky when we talked about going to Hurricane football games, and he mentioned that he couldn’t wait to see them in 2015. This was two years ago. Nevertheless, this almost-love connection should have never come to light, because I think it’s asinine that you get internet access in prison. What do you need to Google? The best way to avoid dropping the soap? Access to THE WEBS is hard enough to deal with and gain on the outside. It can be expensive, and spotty in a lot of areas. You ever try to catch a good WiFi spot? EXACTLY. So I apologize to the guy serving 10-15 if I don’t think you should get to catch up on Breaking Bad on your government-issued Netflix account.
EDUCATION AND HEALTHCARE: Before anyone labels me an evil wombat woman with no soul, I do think that everyone should have basic rights, including all the characters on Oz. But you gotta pay for it. I’m dead serious about this. Prisoners are able to earn their GEDs ( some even complete college degrees!), and if someone needs an appendectomy, it’s getting done, because it’s a violation of their rights if they are denied access. You know what’s a violation of my rights? My student loan bill from Sallie Mae. Not to mention my last emergency room bill when I inhaled the wrong mix of cleaning chemicals (now my friends understand why I’m not domestic- cleaning your house can literally KILL you). What’s the solution? Making these fools pay for it. You heard me correctly- you want to get your jail house law degree or get your tonsils taken out? You have to pay for it. Everyone else does. Prisoners can earn wages from making those damn license plates or cleaning the commissary-I could care less. Better yet, treat them like the law-abiding citizens and hand them a bill, even if they get out. They’ll be just like the rest of us though, it probably won’t get paid.