Let’s Bring Transparency into our Jails and Prisons!

2 Paragraphs 4 Liberty #361

On April 19, 2022 I was able to publish an article entitled “Bring Transparency to our Prison System” in the Los Angeles Daily Journal, which is the largest and most influential newspaper for the legal professional community in California. A copy of the article is attached to this message. As you can see from the article, I became involved in this issue when I was being interviewed on July 4, 2020 about the criminal justice system on George Noory’s nationally-syndicated radio show entitled “Coast to Coast.” As a result of that interview I received letters from twelve men who are incarcerated in prisons all around our country. So I used that as an opportunity to ask them to describe life in our prisons, including the good, the bad and the ugly. What I heard from them truly disturbed me, and I hope that it disturbs you as well.

Of course, some people in confinement do not tell the truth or at least exaggerate it — just like many other people in our world. But even if only ten percent of what they say is true, it cannot be tolerated. Thus I have concluded that the way to ensure that these allegations are reduced to a minimum is to bring transparency to the jail and prison system. This can be done in two ways. First, all correctional officers must be required to wear body cameras while they are on duty — and the jails and prisons must be required to safeguard the tapes for at least a year. Second, the mainstream media should be given complete access to all jails and prisons in our country — consistent with appropriate security protections of course. Then the reporters will be able to see the conditions of our penal system and interview any people who agree to talk with them about those conditions — whether they be incarcerated people or the prison staff. If things like were described are actually happening we must shine a light on it, which is the first step in correcting the situation. So the purpose of this week’s column is to enlist your aid in sending this message on to any media outlets and government officials, federal, state and local, that you have access to. There are two reasons for this request. First, that is the only way that this movement can gain momentum and, second, it is our government, and if it is not working we have no one to blame but ourselves. So please join us in this effort!

Overheard telephone call from a man to his wife:

Husband: “Hi honey, today I was in a terrible accident at work, so Paula drove me to the hospital emergency room, where they told me that I have a severe concussion and that they may have to amputate my left arm!

Wife: “Who is Paula?”

Daily Journal - 04.19.22 - Hon. James P. Gray

Bring transparency to our prison system!

Judge Jim Gray (Ret.) Superior Court of Orange County, California 2012 Libertarian Candidate for Vice President

As stated above, feel free to listen to our radio show entitled All Rise! The Libertarian Way with Judge Jim Gray as we discuss timely issues and show how they will be addressed more beneficially by employing Libertarian values and approaches. The series has concluded, but you can still hear any edition On Demand by going to https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/3883. And, by the way, these 2 Paragraphs columns are now on my website at www.JudgeJImGray.com, Facebook and LinkedIn at judgejimgray, Twitter at judgejamesgray, and wordpress at judgejimgray.wordpress.com. Please visit these sites for past editions, and do your part to spread the word about the importance of Liberty. In addition, my new book with the same title as my radio show is now available at Amazon.com. Please read and discuss it with your friends, and send in a review.