The United States now has more prisoners than any other country in the
world. Ever. In sheer numbers and as a percentage of the population.
Our rate of incarceration is roughly seven times that of Canada or any
Western European country. Despite our “land of the free” rhetoric, we
deem it necessary (at great expense) to incarcerate more of our people,
2.3 million, than the world’s most draconian regimes. We have more
prisoners than China, and they have a billion more people than we do.
We have more prisoners than soldiers; prison guards outnumber Marines.
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