Page views

Ananda Marga Forum

All the letters on this blog are directly related with the teachings of Shrii Shrii Anandamurti ji Baba.To communicate with the editors of this forum or receive postings of this blog, email us at:



Just a reminder to be sure to subscribe to our two new blogsites:

For latest news click here Ananda Marga Universal

For latest news click here Ananda Marga News Bulletin

Or email us at:

And we will be sure to add you to the list.

In Him,


Cruelty in the US Justice & Jail System

From: "gabriel jans"
Date: Sun, 16 Jan 2010 18:12:38
Subject: Cruelty in the US Justice & Jail System


"Tumi a'ma'r a'hva'ne sa'r'a' diyecho..."    (P.S. 1265)


  Baba, You are so gracious You have paid heed to my call of longing. After remaining quiet for a long time, in the end You have finally listened to the cry of my heart.   Such a long span of time has passed. The tender leaves of spring have become yellow and fallen down. The green vegetation in the mountains also underwent huge change; I saw they did not remain the same. Such a long span of time has passed.
  In the end, ultimately I received the showering of Your grace. My heart is inundated with the bliss of having You. You have filled my life with ecstasy.
  Baba, You know so many liilas, divine plays, which I do not understand. In this situation, I go on only searching You-- feeling spellbound, astonished, & amazed.   Only You know the glory of Your divine play. Baba, You have filled and satiated my heart and mind with the showering of Your causeless grace. Baba, You have heard the cry of my longing....

                      == CRUELTY OF US JUSTICE & JAIL SYSTEM ==


A man in the U.S.A. endured a 30 year incarceration (jail time) for a crime he did not commit. Ultimately DNA samples proved the man's innocence. He was released a few  weeks ago. That entire story is noted below.

First we should reflect upon Baba's divine guidelines. Because this case serves as yet another reminder of how Baba's rational teachings are needed in each and every sphere of life.

In this below passage from the Justice chapter of Human Society-1, Baba guides us that our justice system should be corrective in nature, not penal. That means instead of aiming to punish a person - for a crime they did or did not commit - our approach should be to correct the perceived misconduct. That will beneficial for one and all.

In a step by step basis, here are Baba's teachings on this important topic.

                                     BABA'S GUIDELINES ON JUSTICE

First, Baba describes how mistakes are bound happen in any justice system. Never will the courts be 100% correct. Hence we should not aim to punish criminals, but rather rectify them. Punishment creates a negative or "malevolent" feeling in the minds of those being punished. For all these reasons our judicial system should be corrective, not punitive.

Baba says, "I am personally of the opinion that since flaws will always unavoidably remain, no matter how good the judicial system, it is not the intent of nature for one human being to penalize another. Moreover, a detailed analysis reveals that whenever a punitive action is taken to penalize somebody, a feeling of vindictiveness arises in the minds of those administering the punishment, which in turn creates a malevolent mentality. I therefore think that the term “penal system” should be deleted from social terminology. If and when somebody, whether a judge or an ordinary person, takes any type of action against another, it should be corrective, not punitive." (Human Society Part 1, "Justice")

Next, Baba describes how with a corrective system, the defendant / criminal will benefit from the corrective measures, even if that person is innocent. In such a system, an innocent person will never be wrongly incarcerated for 30 years as recently happened.

Baba says, "If a system of corrective measures is introduced, criminals, whether they were deeply involved in the crime or not, will have no reason to complain against anyone. Although there may be flaws in the judgement, it will not harm them in any way. A person who is definitely guilty will benefit from a system of corrective measures, and even a person who is not guilty will benefit from such a system." (Human Society Part 1, "Justice")

Finally, Baba guides us that it is more important and more beneficial for society to fail to punish a guilty person than to wrongly punish an innocent one.

Baba says, "Thus my opinion is that no innocent person should have the opportunity to think or say, “Although I am innocent, I am being punished because I couldn’t afford a good lawyer” due to flaws in the judicial system. No doubt society will be adversely affected if an offender evades the law and is not arrested by the police due to their incompetence, but far greater damage will be done if an innocent person is penalized because of a defective judicial system." (Human Society Part 1, "Justice")

Baba's teachings on justice are totally unique and aim for the welfare of all involved, not the punishment of the person being prosecuted.

With the implementation of Baba's guidelines on justice, harsh mistakes like the one outlined in the case below will be wholly eliminated. 

                          CRITICAL POINTS ABOUT THE U.S. PENAL CODE

The following statistics and paragraphs - which come from 3rd party sources & studies - provide us with a wide-angle vision of the present-day US justice and prison system:

"The Bureau of Justice Statistics recently reported that there are now two million people in the nation’s prisons and jails. This figure is a record high and represents the product of an unprecedented 30-year rise in the use of incarceration. The national inmate population is now six times that of the approximately 330,000 total of 1972, just prior to the inception of the modern day “get tough” movement."

"In this regard, the U.S. rate of incarceration of 702 inmates per 100,000 population represents not only a record high, but situates this nation as the world leader in its use of imprisonment. The continuous rise in the prison population in the U.S. has vaulted this country ahead of our old Cold War rival Russia to become the world’s leading incarcerator.
For comparative purposes, the U.S. now locks up its citizens at a rate 5-8 times that of the industrialized nations to which we are most similar."

"Overall rates of incarceration, based on the total population, obscure the broad variation by which imprisonment impacts various demographic groups. In this regard, African American males are clearly the most heavily affected by current policies, with one of every eight black males in the age group 25-29 currently in prison or jail. Data from the Department of Justice demonstrate that a black male born today has a 29% chance of spending time in state or federal prison in his lifetime. And in the low-income neighborhoods most heavily affected by these trends, the figures are even more striking. One researcher calculates that 75% of black males in Washington, D.C. can expect to go to prison or jail during his lifetime. Racial and ethnic disparities for other groups -- African American women, Hispanics, and Native Americans – while not as severe as those for black males, are nonetheless well above the national average and have been rising significantly in recent years. Regardless of one’s political orientation, these dramatically high rates of incarceration should be of concern to all Americans. The jarring contrast of the wealthiest society in human history maintaining the greatest use of imprisonment presents a clear indication of troubling circumstances. We can debate the causes of these developments and appropriate remedies, but what is clear is that the problem is one deserving significant public and policymaker attention."

"Cross-National Sentencing Comparisons Comparing the limited data examining U.S. sentencing policies with those of other nations demonstrates that American sentencing practices appear to be harsher for many the case of property crime, it is clear that the United States incarcerates more and for longer periods of time than
similar nations."

                             CAUSE OF HIGH INCARCERATION IN THE US

At any given time at least 7 million people in the US are in jail, on parole, or on probation etc. That means 3% of its entire population of 300 million are in jail, on parole or on probation. Of those 7 million, 3 million are veritably locked up in jail, or 1.0% of the total population.

In stark contrast, most countries have a much lower percentage. For instance, in England only 0.2% of the population is in jail - or 5 times less than the US. And half the countries around the world have a lower percentage than England. Hence, the US prison population is very high.

So why are so many sitting in prisons in the US? Here are some of the reasons.

1) Extreme disparity of wealth: Many in the US have no money to educate themselves and they lack the basic necessities of life whereas others in the US are extremely wealthy and have more money than they could ever spend in their lifetime.

2) Racism: Juries and judges are biased against dark-skinned people, i.e. African Americans, those who were slaves in the past.

3) Jails are private enterprises: There is a growing number of prisons in the US that are privately owned. In order to make a profit, they need a maximum number of inmates. Hence there is a private interest to fill the jail. To keep the economy strong, the penal system is pressured to sentence more people to jail time.

4) Extreme selfishness: Many think so much about themselves that they become engrossed in their own unit desires and do not consider the needs of others. For that reason, the poor do not receive the requisite help they need and are instead left to their own devices, often sentenced to jail when they do wrong.

There is plenty of money in the US to solve many of the social ills, but it is not used to educate and employ youths to bring them on the proper path. Rather those poor youths are left to their own means to commit crimes and sit in jail their entire life.

Billion of dollars are then spent to maintain the prison system, but only a fraction of that is needed to educate and rectify people so that they would not commit crimes in the first place. Because of the self-centered theory of capitalism, neither the leaders nor the public thinks in this way.

On average, to costs $100,000 to educate youths in the US. And that education will last a lifetime. In contrast, it costs $75,000 to keep one criminal in jail for one single year, yet that person may be in jail for many decades.

So the government might spend 10 million dollars to keep a murderer in jail their entire life (that includes court fees, legal fees, living expenses, counseling, medical attention and more). So for just 1% of that 10 dollars, one can educate those youths and in turn they would become productive citizens. And the greater result would be that the society will be healthier.

Until this is properly addressed this problem will only grow. Why? Because the wealth disparity is increasing so the crime rate is going up.


By reading these following stories, it become quite clear how being wrongly sentenced to jail destroys the finer qualities of the human personality. In this way innocent people become totally degraded and harmed. 

Mr. Michael Anthony Williams  did not commit any crime at all but tragically he was ordered to prison as a young & tender 16-year-old adolescent and released. This innocent young lad sat needlessly in prison for 22 years. Now as a 40-year-old man, since his release from prison a year ago or so, it is not at all surprising to see that Mr Williams has encountered serious difficulties. After all, he was placed in prison before finishing school and without any job experience. So upon his release from jail, without any compensation or proper support from the government for being wrongly imprisoned, he has lived in a homeless shelters and had a series of jobs, none lasting more than six months.

Gene Bibbins was wrongly sentenced to time in prison. Prison life took its toll on his psyche. The harsh treatment by guards and other inmates and being exposed to drugs and violence led him into an emotional and psychological wasteland. Even though 100% innocent, he spent 4 1/2 years of torture behind bars. It was like being a POW. Upon his release, Geneworked a series of temporary factory jobs but coule never recover fully. He lost all hope and sadly he became a victim of drug abuse, and landed back in jail in East Baton Rouge, accused of cocaine possession and battery.

The stories are not unusual for men who have spent many years in prison. What makes the stories of these men different are that they bring into serious question how
living in jail destroys the human personality. After all these people were innocent people. Their lives got ruined by going to jail when they should not even have been in prison in the first place.

Such men are among the more than 200 prisoners exonerated since 1989 by DNA evidence — almost all of whom had been incarcerated for murder or rape. Their varied experiences are typical of what The New York Times found in one of the most extensive looks to date at what happens to those exonerated inmates after they leave prison.

The Times researched the compensation claims of all 206 people known by the Innocence Project to have been exonerated through DNA evidence as of August 2007. At least 79 — nearly 40 percent — got no money for their years in prison. Half of those have federal lawsuits or state claims pending. More than half of those who did receive compensation waited two years or longer after exoneration for the first payment. 

“It’s ridiculous,” said Vincent Moto, exonerated in 1996 of a rape conviction after serving almost nine years in Pennsylvania. “They have programs for drug dealers who get out of prison. They have programs for people who really do commit crimes. People get out and go in halfway houses and have all kinds of support. There are housing programs for them, job placement for them. But for the innocent, they have nothing.” 

Most of the 137 exonerated inmates researched by The Times entered prison in their teens or 20s, and they stayed there while some of their peers on the outside settled on careers, married, started families, bought homes and began saving for retirement. They emerged many years behind, and it has been difficult to catch up.

"The current design of prison systems don't work," said criminal justice expert Joel Dvoskin, PhD, of the University of Arizona. "Overly punitive approaches used on violent, angry criminals only provide a breeding ground for more anger and more violence."

                                                BABA'S GUIDELINE

By Baba's grace we have to put an end to tortures imposed on innocent people by our justice system. At present the exploiters are committing crimes against humanity yet are seen as upstanding if not honoured citizens. Whereas the have-nots are forced into crime or even wrongly blamed of crimes they did not commit. Now we have to analyse who is the real culprit and fix the system accordingly to one is that reformatory and not punitive.

Baba says, "The ills perpetrated in society are in a great measure created by the exploiters themselves. To swell their bank balances the exploiters create an artificial scarcity of food, clothes and other necessary consumer goods, and loot profits in the black market. Those who have no buying capacity for high-priced food and clothes take to stealing and other shady methods in order to meet their bare necessities. These ill-fed, ill-clad flocks of poor wretches work for these greedy black marketeers and smugglers. When apprehended, it is they who are penalized – the rich escape on the strength of their influence. Throwing their conscience to the four winds, these poor wretches take to sin and crime still more desperately. The society accuses these sinners and criminals, while the rich exploiters enact the roles of popular leaders, wear garlands, let loose fireworks of speeches and exhort the masses with a clarion call to make more sacrifices." (Human Society II, 109)



"With 7 million American adults in prison and almost 50 percent of them African-American males, many children are growing up without fathers and are at risk for continuing the vicious cycle of criminal behavior, Dvoskin said. "If we don't make the changes now, we will see these numbers go up."

Baba says, "Judges can rarely say with total conviction that one person is guilty and another innocent. Their verdicts are based on the testimonies of witnesses, the evidence and the arguments of lawyers. They have very little scope to verify whether or not the witnesses are telling the truth or whether or not the evidence is genuine. Experienced lawyers often win cases because even an eminent judge becomes confused by their arguments. Moreover, if the experienced lawyers also happen to be retired judges, it will be very easy for them to win over the judge. A judge who previously worked under an experienced lawyer will usually find it difficult to reject his or her evidence and arguments. In other words, such lawyers exert a personal influence over the judge. Of course in most developed countries nowadays retired judges are prevented from practising law. This regulation is highly commendable, and results in the general public getting a better chance of receiving justice. However, there is still no guarantee that people will receive impartial justice, because in practice very few judges are able to verify whether the witnesses are telling the truth or whether the evidence is genuine, or to closely scrutinize the verbose arguments of experienced lawyers." (Human Society Part 1, "Justice")

Baba says, "It is necessary to closely examine the standard of judges. Those who are permitted to sit in judgement over others and have the power to punish must be closely monitored to see whether any degeneration has occurred in their intelligence, capacity for deliberation, or moral character. From time to time, as and when necessary, reports about the character and conduct of judges may be required by bodies representing the people. A judge who is a drunkard, of dubious character or engaged in any form of antisocial activity has no right to pass judgement on others. I am emphasizing the personal standards of judges because the nature of justice is such that higher priority has to be given to temporal, spatial and personal factors than to legal processes. (Human Society Part 1, "Justice")


One innocent Dallas County man who was falsely charged of rape and robber in 1979 rape has been duly exonerated after unjustly spending 30yrs in jail.

12:00 AM CST on Tuesday, January 4, 2011

By JENNIFER EMILY / The Dallas Morning News

A man in U.S.A. faced 30 year incarceration, jail for a crime he did not commit...

With your preferred search engine, you can easily read about this story on-line.

Policy on Comments

Spam and unparliamentary language not to be used.

folders: Ananda Marga related articles on hundreds of niche issues


To receive postings of this blog, email us at:

Baba nam kevalam