A woman spends 40 years in and out of prison for shoplifting and finally gets a break from a judge in her late 50s. She uses the opportunity to abolish a jail and transform her city. This week we look at prison abolition and the arguments for eliminating all punishment from the system. From the denial that we have free will, to the view that perpetuating injustice disqualifies the state from punishing, we look at whether any of us have the right to punish anyone else, and question the very purpose of the criminal justice system.Guest voices include Marilynn Winn, Gregg Caruso, Michael S. Moore, Erin Kelly, and Kimberly Kessler Ferzan.In Slate Plus, Barry speaks to Kimberly Kessler Ferzan about separating the criminal justice system into two distinct institutions, one dedicated to retributive punishment, and one dedicated to crime prevention. Why should there be two systems and what would be involved in separating them? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Two men committed a double murder in rural Maine in 1990. Only one pulled the trigger. The state prosecutor decided to try them separately, but that was a mistake, and both were acquitted. Then the Feds came in, and sentenced one man to life in prison for a crime he was already acquitted of doing. How is this possible in America? The answer is a loophole in criminal law. Today we examine that loophole by looking at the Thanksgiving Day murders in Maine, and the constitutional challenges this loophole has survived over the years. Guest voices include Sharon Mack, Gerald Leonard of Boston University Law, Judge Frederic Block, State Senator Todd Kaminsky, and Matthew Noah Smith of Northeastern University.In Slate Plus, Barry talks to Matthew Noah Smith of Northeastern University and Mark Schroeder of USC on whether John Rawl's distinction between procedural and substantive justice can help tell us whether and why the practice of sentencing on unconvicted conduct is just or unjust. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
A teen-aged girl gets caught with a suitcase stuffed with powdered cocaine, and she comes before a federal judge. That judge learns that a felony conviction carries punishments for life for her. He embarks on a mission to get all other judges to shorten prison sentences in light of this. Meanwhile, a researcher learns of a pervasive but secretive practice where prosecutors, defense attorneys, and judges skirt the truth to protect defendants from unjust harsh punishments imposed on them from lawmakers. This week we look at collateral consequences, the thousands of laws restricting the freedoms and opportunities of the formerly convicted, like voting, housing, job opportunities, government benefits, and deportation. One philosophers believes many of these are permanent punishments, not civil measures for reducing risk. Guest voices include Judge Frederic Block, philosopher Zachary Hoskins, and legal scholar Thea Johnson.In Slate Plus, Judge Block gives his opinions about mandatory minimum sentencing and prosecutorial immunity. Zachary Hoskins distinguishes between two different principles of proportionality in sentencing, and Thea Johnson talks about why fictional pleas give prosecutors more power, even though they benefit defendants. To get the full bonus episode of Hi-Phi Nation, sign up for Slate Plus at slate.com/hiphiplus. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Erick Williams tells the story of how one bad night in the chow hall got him into solitary confinement at Walpole. The path out of solitary, and eventually out of prison, took another decade.  On this episode, we look at the unique power of the Department of Corrections to do with prisoners what they will at their discretion. Philosopher Lisa Guenther tells the history of solitary in America, and the conceptions of the self that drive its continued use. We end with an examination of what the experiences of solitary say about the nature of human experiences of time, purpose, and connection with other humans. Guest voices include Erick Williams, Lisa Guenther, Lisa Newman-Polk, and Jamie Eldridge. In Slate Plus, Barry and Lisa Newman-Polk tell the story of Eugene Ivey, who spent 13 years is solitary, was paroled, but is still locked up on charges inside the Massachusetts prison system. To get the bonus episode and an ad-free feed of all Slate podcast, sign up at www.slate.com/hiphiplus. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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Creator Details

Episode Count
50
Podcast Count
2
Total Airtime
1 day, 9 hours
PCID
Podchaser Creator ID logo 634995