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“Being tough on crime and tough on criminals is not the same thing…”

Just came across this article on Policy Mic featuring a short animated video about mass incarceration in the United States. Vloggers Hank and John Greene worked with visual.ly and The Prison Policy Initiative to create the video. The vlogging brothers write in the description of the video on YouTube,

It wasn’t easy to pick this topic, but I believe that America’s 40-year policy of mass incarceration is deeply unethical, not very effective, and promotes the security of the few at the expense of the many.

It’s hard for me, as a person who was born into privilege, to imagine the challenges convicted criminals face, often for crimes that are utterly non-violent.

If you’re feeling like you want to do something about this, I’m mostly just making this video as an informational resource and to encourage people to think of felons not as bad, scary people but just as people.

The people at The Prison Policy Initiative were very helpful in the creation of this video and if you want to learn more about their work and how to get involved go to http://www.prisonpolicy.org

To be sure, the video does not cover all aspects of the conversation–there is not mention or discussion of how race and class factor into the conversation (e.g. how there is an insanely disproportionate amount of young, lower or working-class Black men in the prison system), but the video is engaging, offers a number of jarring facts, and will hopefully spur some conversation, raise awareness, and prompt people to want to learn more about the injustices of the prison system in the U.S.

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