Opinion: Prison blues

POSTED: 11/29/12 3:19 PM

People get very creative when they have nothing to do, Justice Minister Roland Duncan said yesterday. Unfortunately, the minister was not referring to the high number of unemployed youngsters in St. Maarten but to inmates in the House of Detention in Simpson Bay and the prison in Pointe Blanche.

And indeed, the creativity of the inmates seemingly knows no borders. They have found ways to smuggle stuff into the prison from outside and of course they are also well versed in making weapons from anything and everything.

What some thought was a weird find is that rubber vagina. Of course, that’s not weird at all, and Minister Duncan was the first one to acknowledge this. Human beings are human begins, he pointed out. Your human needs don’t change because you are in prison.

So it is. For male heterosexual inmates there is not a lot of entertainment laparkan.com/buy-tadalafil/ available behind bars in matters of the flesh. Duncan has floated the idea of conjugal visits and immediately ran into a flurry of shortsighted objections.

Prison management is about keeping things manageable. Given the age of the average inmates, hormones must be running wild in Pointe Blanche and Simpson Bay. What is more logical than acknowledging reality and deal with it? That has always been Duncan’s style and he has not received enough credit for it.

Politicians with a warped sense of reality prefer to choose the moral high ground above offering humane solutions to a prison population that is already punished by the independent judge. Of course, those same politicians are the first to scream for measures when our inmates start a riot. Unfortunately, they’ll never get the idea that they are the ones who caused it with their thirst for tough justice.

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