For those of you who didn’t know, there was a man named Brock Turner. He was a former swimmer at Stanford University. Apparently he was quite the star in that area. He was recently convicted on multiple charges involved in the sexual violation of a girl who was blackout drunk. This guy is a disgusting piece of shit. The sentence he was given was six months imprisonment and three years probation. He must also register as a convicted sex offender. A registration that will never go away. Naturally, when the Internet heard this, they were somewhat outraged (as the Internet is want to do). They demanded that his sentence be higher. They have been calling for the judge to be taken off the bench. There’s a petition on Change.org for that.
Do I think that this sentence is too lenient? Yeah, I suppose I do. But at the same time, I can’t help but think that it is a little weird that we are so outraged about this. Follow me on this. I read an article about a man who is sentenced to thirty years for growing three pot plants behind his house. This is on top of another sentence for possession he got some years ago. Still, this guy has never been violent. He has never done any wrong, and he is in jail for thirty years. The man is around 50 years old. Let’s assume that he gets out at 20 for good behavior. He’s going to be an old man by the time he’s free again. Never hurt anyone. Never done a violent crime in his life. Where’s the outrage about that?
Oh, right, he’s just some guy who has a drug that is safer than ANY of the legal prescription drugs out there. Safer than alcohol. It’s impossible to get addicted to it. You can’t overdose from it. The consumption of it hurts NO ONE. Why is the public not outraged about that? I can already hear the counterargument –
We’re talking about a convicted sex offender! He dragged a woman behind a dumpster and raped her! How is that comparable?
Okay, let’s think about this – Turner isn’t just being sentenced to jail. He’s going to be on the sex offender registry. You know what that means? That means that every time he tries to get a job, they are going to see that in a background check. Make no mistake, this man’s ability to get a job is going to be hindered by this. Not to mention – he is also going to have potential relationships hurt by this. Women who he seeks to get with can easily find out that this guy is a sexual predator. His chances of having a stable relationship are pretty much dead for the rest of his life. This conviction is never going to leave him. Ever. And I think that’s a good thing. Let this disgusting piece of shit have his crimes follow him. You rape a girl behind a dumpster, you lose all sympathy from me.
With a country that has a prison system as overcrowded and broken as America’s, do I think that this scum-fuck is the biggest problem, though? Absolutely not. Brock Turner isn’t even on my radar. Should the system be harder on him? Sure. But if there is going to be leniency anywhere, it should be with these people who have done NOTHING to hurt anyone. If you have non-violent offenses, you shouldn’t even be in prison. You should be fined, maybe. The drug war is dumb in its own right, but let’s look past that for a second. Let’s pretend that that isn’t a huge deal. If your crime has involved harming no one, then you shouldn’t be in prison. That’s a fact.
If we could stop feeling the need to lock everyone up all the time, then maybe we could have a prison system that could actually rehabilitate people. I know, right? Crazy thought. If we didn’t have so many non-violent offenders in jail, then we could have a prison system meant to contain the real animals like Brock Turner. If we could only have those people in jail, and not the people whose only crime was putting something the government doesn’t like in their body, then we have a fair prison system.
But don’t go saying that Brock is getting off virtually scot-free. He’s not. This prison sentence will follow him the rest of his life. Should be locked up for longer? Sure. But he’s not the problem here. It’s much bigger than that.
Until next time, a quote,
“It is said that no one truly knows a nation until one has been inside its jails. A nation should not be judged by how it treats its highest citizens, but its lowest ones.” – Nelson Mandela