“A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him.” – Judge Aaron Perskey
These are Judge Aaron Perskey’s words about sentencing Brock Turner to a meager 6 months in prison (oh- 3 with good behavior) after Turner was caught in the act of sexually assaulting an intoxicated and unconscious woman.
The media has plastered Brock’s privileged background all around us, in a thinly veiled attempt to justify this lack of a sentencing.
The public outcry is just and true – the situation is, from start to finish, an example of how rape culture is prevalent in our society (basically: we as a nation cannot find a fuck to give when it comes to taking steps to protect women.)
But that quote rings different bells for me.
Again, for the back row: “A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him.”
Wait, what the fuck?
I mean – is that not what prison is meant for?
Seeing as how Brock Turner’s life consists of thinking its all well and good to rape someone behind a dumpster. .. I would hope prison would have a severe impact on his life.
But let’s just play pretend. We’ll say, for the sake of making my point, that Judge Perskey is right.
Prison is way too much for Turner.
Prison is way too much for Turner, a criminal, a rapist, a menace to actual society.
Gosh. I have to think so hard to figure out what is so different from Brock Turner and other rapists, criminals, and general menaces who are actually incarcerated.
Ok ok ok, so we can break Turner’s privilege down in lots of different ways (class, race, gender.) I won’t go into that here.
But this whole
shitstorm of an event only goes to show that prisons do not serve the purpose of putting criminals behind bars.
It serves the purpose of enforcing class- and race- based inequality – by keeping some criminals behind bars.
Nation, we have got to do better.
Outrage is great, and I’m glad to see outrage.
But it’s easy to see there’s wrong here.
Outrage in this situation is very easy to accomplish. And I’m sure you’ll be just as outraged when this happens again.
So we need to contribute action, valuable action.
Changing society is not a firecracker in the night, but a flame angry enough to burn structures down to the very bones on top of which they were built.
Let’s pull a Beyonce, and get in formation b/c it’s clear we’ve got work to do.
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