Welcome to the sixth post in our Sententia Discussion series! Please engage in the discussion below the post. For a reminder of what the Sententia Discussion series is, and how it’s supposed to work, see this post. Remember, discussion topics will be posted on the second and fourth Sunday of each month.

Background

Prison reform has been a subject of debate for many years now, and there has been a lot of discussion, especially in the past year or so, about what role prison is really supposed to fill. Is it punishment? Disincentive? Reform tool? Protection for society? These debates are not new; similar conversations have been occurring at least as far back as the days of Mesopotamia. In a way, it’s probably a problem and a debate that comes along with the existence of society – wherever there is society, there will be those who do not obey its strictures (for whatever reason).

Prompt

What is the role of second chances in society, and how can one determine when they are appropriate?

Prison: reform, punishment, both?

How would you change the modern prison system, and to what ends?

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