Jesus or Jail?

Tapey
atheist
Tapey's picture
Posts: 1474
Joined: 2009-01-23
User is offlineOffline
Jesus or Jail?

http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2011/09/26/jesus-or-jail-alabama-town-offers-options-for-serving-time/?hpt=us_t2

Quote:


 

If you're charged with a nonviolent crime in one Alabama town, you might just have the chance to pray it all away.

Starting this week, under a new program called Operation ROC (Restore Our Community), local judges in Bay Minette, Alabama, will give those found guilty of misdemeanors the choice of serving out their time in jail, paying a fine or attending church each Sunday for a year.

The goal of the program is to help steer those who are not yet hardened criminals the chance to turn their lives around. Those who choose to go to church (there are no mosques or synagogues in the area) will have to check in with a pastor and the police department each week, CNN affiliate WKRG reported. Once you attend church every week for a year the case would be dismissed.

Police Chief Mike Rowland said the measure is one that would help save money and help direct people down the right path. Rowland told WKRG it costs $75 a day to house each inmate.

"Longevity is the key," he told WKRG.

He said he believes 30-day drug programs don't have the long-term capabilities to heal someone in the ways the ROC program might.

Police in the town said they think it is a simple choice, but others think it's a choice that shouldn't even be offered.

The ACLU in Alabama said the idea is "blatantly unconstitutional," according to the Alabama Press-Register.

"It violates one basic tenet of the Constitution, namely that government can’t force participation in religious activity," Olivia Turner, executive director for the ACLU of Alabama told the paper.

Rowland acknowledged there were concerns about separation of church and state complaints but said he didn't see it as too big of a problem because offenders weren't being forced to attend church, they are just being given the option.

The offenders who voluntarily choose church over jail get to pick the churches they attend. If they complete a year’s attendance, Rowland said, their criminal case would be dismissed.

Thoughts?

Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy.
Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend.
No animal shall wear clothes.
No animal shall sleep in a bed.
No animal shall drink alcohol.
No animal shall kill any other animal.
All animals are equal.


jcgadfly
SuperfanBronze Member
Posts: 6789
Joined: 2006-07-18
User is offlineOffline
Gives people a more honest

Gives people a more honest reason to go to church than Jesus - "I'm serving my time"?

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


Wonderist
atheist
Wonderist's picture
Posts: 2479
Joined: 2006-03-19
User is offlineOffline
Fucking ridiculous, as usual.

Fucking ridiculous, as usual.


Vastet
atheistBloggerHigh Level ModeratorSuperfan
Vastet's picture
Posts: 10719
Joined: 2006-12-25
User is offlineOffline
Meh. Kinda torn. Religion vs

Meh. Kinda torn. Religion vs State wise it is disgusting. Yet at the same time the whole US justice system is disgusting. And churches are almost as much community centres as religious centres, which can be invaluable to rehab.
So I don't like it, but it can't hurt more than the system already does either.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


Cpt_pineapple
atheist
Cpt_pineapple's picture
Posts: 5487
Joined: 2007-04-12
User is offlineOffline
Well, that's

Well, that's consitutional

 

 

 


MrB
atheist
MrB's picture
Posts: 5
Joined: 2011-09-27
User is offlineOffline
Judge op.

 On one hand the idea that a long term commitment to correction is a move to a more enlighten view of criminal correctional practices. That being said using this opportunity to try and instruct an archaic system of morals seems like a wasteful application of long term correctional processes.  It seems as if the forced education would be better suited towards giving individuals skills in order to become productive in the words instead of criminals. In short great idea with a poor application namely the religious aspect of it.

On a side note I feel that the core morals of most religions are detriments to society and should be avoided at all costs.


redneF
atheistRational VIP!
redneF's picture
Posts: 1971
Joined: 2011-01-04
User is offlineOffline
Quote: ...local judges in

Quote:

 ...local judges in Bay Minette, Alabama, will give those found guilty of misdemeanors the choice of serving out their time in jail, paying a fine or attending church each Sunday for a year.

They weren't specific about the 'jailtime', or 'fine'. But they were specific about church for a year.

Agenda much?

What if the 'offender' already goes to church every Sunday?...

Quote:
The goal of the program is to help steer those who are not yet hardened criminals the chance to turn their lives around.

Fucking rhetoric.

We know what the 'goal' of the program is.

Quote:
The offenders who voluntarily choose church over jail get to pick the churches they attend. If they complete a year’s attendance, Rowland said, their criminal case would be dismissed.

Two can play that game.

I'd tell the judge I accept to go to a Taoist temple every Sunday for a year.

 

 

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


Manageri
atheist
Manageri's picture
Posts: 392
Joined: 2009-05-09
User is offlineOffline
Punishments should be there

Punishments should be there to serve as a deterrent. How's this bullshit supposed to deter anyone from anything? I never thought I'd see the day they're handing out too soft punishments in the US. The only good thing about this I can think of is that it would maybe save some people who get busted for drug possession from doing time.


Tapey
atheist
Tapey's picture
Posts: 1474
Joined: 2009-01-23
User is offlineOffline
Manageri wrote:Punishments

Manageri wrote:
Punishments should be there to serve as a deterrent. How's this bullshit supposed to deter anyone from anything? I never thought I'd see the day they're handing out too soft punishments in the US. The only good thing about this I can think of is that it would maybe save some people who get busted for drug possession from doing time.

Well jails apparently are not for punishment anymore. They are there for rehabilitation, never mind thet fact that no rehabilitation occurs and they mainly just reinforce criminality but thats what the decsion makers say prison is there for so it really doesn't matter if there is no punishment. Personally I disagree with the whole prison is not there to punish thing clearly that is its purpose because it does nothing else.

 

Though I do agree with keeping non violence criminals out of jail, of all types. I don't care if you commited millions in fraud, if your crime was not violent I do not think you belong in jail be cause you are not a threat to society. Sure house arrest, or stamp it on his forehead so no one will trust him in a high power job again, hell fine him all the money back, but there is no need for jail because unless he is physically going to harm someone their is no need for him to be separated from society. Being resigned to working at McDonalds for the rest of your life is quite enough punishment in my view. I don't like the deterance jails provide anyway. Jail deterence is built on fear of the inmates not the prison itself really. If the punishment was a work gang with no chance of rape, assault that sort of thing that kind of deterence I am fine with but not what we currently have.

Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy.
Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend.
No animal shall wear clothes.
No animal shall sleep in a bed.
No animal shall drink alcohol.
No animal shall kill any other animal.
All animals are equal.


harleysportster
atheist
harleysportster's picture
Posts: 3312
Joined: 2010-10-17
User is offlineOffline
What if

What if the offenders are Jewish, Islamic, Buddhist, Hindu or Wiccan ? Not that there might be a whole lot of those in nowhere Alabama, but just saying.

It would depend on the time for me. If it was thrity days in jail or a year in church, send me to jail.

If it was a year in jail or a year in church, I'd probably take the church and see how many deconverts that I could bring into my fold.

At the very least, I might meet some "nice" church girls. I could always tell my probation officer that they were "teaching me" about the "true" word of god. I would even attend their wednesday night services for that privilege.  Laughing out loud

But in all seriousness, this is total bullshit and I am surprised that this has not caused some sort of stir yet.

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


Brian37
atheistSuperfan
Brian37's picture
Posts: 13823
Joined: 2006-02-14
User is offlineOffline
Tapey

Tapey wrote:

http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2011/09/26/jesus-or-jail-alabama-town-offers-options-for-serving-time/?hpt=us_t2

Quote:

 

 

If you're charged with a nonviolent crime in one Alabama town, you might just have the chance to pray it all away.

Starting this week, under a new program called Operation ROC (Restore Our Community), local judges in Bay Minette, Alabama, will give those found guilty of misdemeanors the choice of serving out their time in jail, paying a fine or attending church each Sunday for a year.

The goal of the program is to help steer those who are not yet hardened criminals the chance to turn their lives around. Those who choose to go to church (there are no mosques or synagogues in the area) will have to check in with a pastor and the police department each week, CNN affiliate WKRG reported. Once you attend church every week for a year the case would be dismissed.

Police Chief Mike Rowland said the measure is one that would help save money and help direct people down the right path. Rowland told WKRG it costs $75 a day to house each inmate.

"Longevity is the key," he told WKRG.

He said he believes 30-day drug programs don't have the long-term capabilities to heal someone in the ways the ROC program might.

Police in the town said they think it is a simple choice, but others think it's a choice that shouldn't even be offered.

The ACLU in Alabama said the idea is "blatantly unconstitutional," according to the Alabama Press-Register.

"It violates one basic tenet of the Constitution, namely that government can’t force participation in religious activity," Olivia Turner, executive director for the ACLU of Alabama told the paper.

Rowland acknowledged there were concerns about separation of church and state complaints but said he didn't see it as too big of a problem because offenders weren't being forced to attend church, they are just being given the option.

The offenders who voluntarily choose church over jail get to pick the churches they attend. If they complete a year’s attendance, Rowland said, their criminal case would be dismissed.

Thoughts?

This is a clear violation of the constitution. This is no different than giving military service members the choice of KP or church.

This is simply another backwoods attempt by religious people to use force of government to attempt to indoctrinate people.

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
Check out my poetry here on Rational Responders Like my poetry thread on Facebook under BrianJames Rational Poet also on twitter under Brianrrs37


Manageri
atheist
Manageri's picture
Posts: 392
Joined: 2009-05-09
User is offlineOffline
Tapey wrote:Well jails

Tapey wrote:

Well jails apparently are not for punishment anymore. They are there for rehabilitation, never mind thet fact that no rehabilitation occurs and they mainly just reinforce criminality but thats what the decsion makers say prison is there for so it really doesn't matter if there is no punishment. Personally I disagree with the whole prison is not there to punish thing clearly that is its purpose because it does nothing else.

 

Well, the majority of people believe in free will and think retribution is a perfectly reasonable and moral thing to do, so what their view of how we handle criminals is doesn't really interest me. My only considerations when it comes to how we deal with criminals are deterring crime and keeping dangerous people away from others, which is (pretty astonishlingly, given the general retardation of our race in just about every issue) why I agree with the majority that prisons actually make some sense, at least for violent criminals.

Quote:

Though I do agree with keeping non violence criminals out of jail, of all types. I don't care if you commited millions in fraud, if your crime was not violent I do not think you belong in jail be cause you are not a threat to society. Sure house arrest, or stamp it on his forehead so no one will trust him in a high power job again, hell fine him all the money back, but there is no need for jail because unless he is physically going to harm someone their is no need for him to be separated from society. Being resigned to working at McDonalds for the rest of your life is quite enough punishment in my view. I don't like the deterance jails provide anyway. Jail deterence is built on fear of the inmates not the prison itself really. If the punishment was a work gang with no chance of rape, assault that sort of thing that kind of deterence I am fine with but not what we currently have.

As long as the punishment deters others from doing the same crime, I don't really care what it is. I agree that locking everyone up is almost certainly not the most productive or humane way to go about it though.


cj
atheistRational VIP!
cj's picture
Posts: 3330
Joined: 2007-01-05
User is offlineOffline
Vastet wrote:Meh. Kinda

Vastet wrote:
Meh. Kinda torn. Religion vs State wise it is disgusting. Yet at the same time the whole US justice system is disgusting. And churches are almost as much community centres as religious centres, which can be invaluable to rehab. So I don't like it, but it can't hurt more than the system already does either.

 

There is nothing to disagree with in your post.

 

-- I feel so much better since I stopped trying to believe.

"We are entitled to our own opinions. We're not entitled to our own facts"- Al Franken

"If death isn't sweet oblivion, I will be severely disappointed" - Ruth M.


cj
atheistRational VIP!
cj's picture
Posts: 3330
Joined: 2007-01-05
User is offlineOffline
Manageri wrote:Punishments

Manageri wrote:
Punishments should be there to serve as a deterrent. How's this bullshit supposed to deter anyone from anything? I never thought I'd see the day they're handing out too soft punishments in the US. The only good thing about this I can think of is that it would maybe save some people who get busted for drug possession from doing time.

 

It sure as hell would deter me.  But I don't think that is what they have in mind.

 

-- I feel so much better since I stopped trying to believe.

"We are entitled to our own opinions. We're not entitled to our own facts"- Al Franken

"If death isn't sweet oblivion, I will be severely disappointed" - Ruth M.


pauljohntheskeptic
atheistSilver Member
pauljohntheskeptic's picture
Posts: 2484
Joined: 2008-02-26
User is offlineOffline
I'd take jail or pay the fine

Update  They are re-evaluating it - http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/09/27/us-crime-alabama-church-idUSTRE78Q6KA20110927

I located Bay Minete AL on google maps. It is about 35 miles north of I-10 and about 45 miles North East of Mobile. The closest I have ever got to that city is on I-10. I will make sure on my trips through the area that I never go near their city.

 

____________________________________________________________
"I guess it's time to ask if you live under high voltage power transmission lines which have been shown to cause stimulation of the fantasy centers of the brain due to electromagnetic waves?" - Me

"God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, - it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks please. Cash and in small bills." - Robert A Heinlein.


Sapient
High Level DonorRRS CO-FOUNDERRRS Core MemberWebsite Admin
Sapient's picture
Posts: 7530
Joined: 2006-04-18
User is offlineOffline
Tapey

Tapey wrote:

Thoughts?

Legalize marijuana, free the jails of all people in on marijuana related charges (save billions).  Tax the shit out of marijuana (earn billions).  Once everyone is high there will be less crime and we wont have to shove a ridiculously stupid concept like God down peoples throats when they commit a misdemeanor. 

 

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.


Atheistextremist
atheistSilver Member
Atheistextremist's picture
Posts: 5102
Joined: 2009-09-17
User is offlineOffline
Personally, if I

 

 

had to choose between a stint in gaol with bubba and co and the phallusy of the slippery soap, or church, with Mr Pinkwhistle and his giddy adventures in the Magic Faraway Tree, I'd choose church. In honesty, I used to spend most my father's sermons fantasizing about kissing Caroline Acutt, which was hardly a serious trial. Except the Revelations sermons, that is. I spent those wondering how Dad was keeping a straight face.  

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


Answers in Gene...
High Level Donor
Answers in Gene Simmons's picture
Posts: 4214
Joined: 2008-11-11
User is offlineOffline
p { margin-bottom: 0.08in; }

p { margin-bottom: 0.08in; }

harleysportster wrote:
What if the offenders are Jewish, Islamic, Buddhist, Hindu or Wiccan ? Not that there might be a whole lot of those in nowhere Alabama, but just saying.

It would depend on the time for me. If it was thrity days in jail or a year in church, send me to jail.

If it was a year in jail or a year in church, I'd probably take the church and see how many deconverts that I could bring into my fold.

At the very least, I might meet some "nice" church girls. I could always tell my probation officer that they were "teaching me" about the "true" word of god. I would even attend their wednesday night services for that privilege.  Laughing out loud

But in all seriousness, this is total bullshit and I am surprised that this has not caused some sort of stir yet.


 

Remind me to never go there.


 

Even so, there is a question outstanding from your post. If it is a local thing, it could be a tough chioce. If I did mix it up down there, 30 days in the hole would be a huge problem. If it did happen I would be all over this idea:


 

AIGS wrote:
Your honor, I am terribly sorry for what I did. You can guess from my voice that I live hundreds of miles from here. If it pleases the court to grant me probation, I am sure that there is a way to get my probation officer to receive regular letters from father documenting my compliance with court order.


 

If he buys that, then I will go with this:


 

AIGS wrote:
Sadly, church up north is not as simple as it is here. The Anglicans have had so many schisms over the past thirty years that it is unclear where I can find a church where communion does not come from a chick or a fag.


 

I am never coming back here and thus not a problem for you or your community ever again but in lieu of 30 days in the hole, would you grant me 30 days to find a church?


 


 

Since judges are generally reasonable people, I have at least a shot at that. After that, there is an Episcopalian church a block from me. They have two priests. One is a woman and the other is gay but it is not like I give a shit. 30 days in another state versus 52 wasted sunday mornings?


 

As long as I make it very clear that they need to keep it to text and never actually talk to the probation officer on the phone, then I should be good to go.

NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote:
Never ever did I say enything about free, I said "free."

=