I just read a good article by Adam Rink in which he says that the United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world because the country puts so many people in prison for non-violent offenses. He also mentions mandatory sentencing and three strikes policies.
According to his statistics, over half of the prisoners in state prisons are held for non-violent offenses, such as drug crimes.
He also explains how prohibition of allegedly unhealthy behaviors such as alcohol or drugs increases violent crime. Namely, prohibition expands organized crime, providing funding for violent criminals. Additionally, throwing non-violent offenders in jail and prison tends to make them violent and dangerous.
Throwing so many non-violent people in jail also causes other social problems, such as taking parental figures away and breaking up personal relationships.
Also, all the massive amounts of resources spent enforcing the prohibition of non-violent acts such as drug possession could instead be put towards preventing violent crime and victimization.
Perhaps the United States’ massive war on drugs and other victimless behaviors is the reason why the United States has such high violent crime rates.
What do you think?