Texas Government Research Paper - Texas Government - Research Paper

952 words - 4 pages

What can be Done About the Texas Criminal Justice System?
In order for our world and community to run smoothly and orderly, laws and policies
must be put into place. In order for the laws to be put into place we; as members of a
democratic society, choose to elect officials who will in turn create these policies on our
behalf. Moreover in order for these laws and policies to be enforced, a criminal justice
system is implemented. The criminal justice system is the set of agencies, law enforcements,
and processes established by governments to control crime and impose penalties on those
who choose to violate the laws. The criminal justice system is set in place to protect citizens
who elect to follow the rules, and punish those who elect to break them. However in Texas’
case, the criminal justice system arguably does a great deal of good, but dolefully a great deal
of bad as well. They say everything is bigger in Texas, and naturally, that extends to the
state's correctional system as well. Texas has one of the highest incarceration rates in the
United states. In addition texas also has the highest number or death row executions, the
highest number of wrongful convictions, and the list continues to go on. Texas’ criminal
justice system is full of flaws and weaknesses. Nonetheless it’s not too late for texans and
their officials to do better.
Everyone knows “Texas is tough on crime.” In fact if Texas was a country, it would
have the highest incarceration rate in the world. This high incarceration rate inevitably leads
to overcrowding in jails, which leads to new jails being built, which leads to more of the
texas budget being spent to care for prisoners. It is a real life domino effect. “One of the
many costly and counterproductive results of the sometimes mindlessly pursued war on
drugs is the imprisonment of tens of thousands of people for low-level, nonviolent drug
crimes.”(editorial). Yes people who break the law need to be held accountable for their
actions, however many low level offenders; like drug offenders, serve lengthy prisons
sentences for such a petty crime. Consequently costing Texas millions.“About half of all
federal inmates are in prison because of drugs. Since 1980, the number of federal inmates
serving time for drug offenses has increased from 4,700 to 98,000, while the cost of
operating federal prisons has risen 1,700 percent to about $7 billion a year.”(editorial).
Another popular slogan in Texas is “Don’t mess with Texas” This is especially true
when one decides to commit a crime. As mentioned before, Texas executes more prisoners
than any other state. In fact because of our traditionalistic and Individualistic political
culture, “it's nearly impossible to be elected to statewide office without supporting capital
punishment.” (Slater). “Polls show that nearly three-quarters of Texans support it, and the
numbers are even higher among conservative Republicans” (Slater). Also according to new
reports, “the vast majority...

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