Martial Arts in prison

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by Rabbitthekitten, Aug 10, 2018.

  1. Rabbitthekitten

    Rabbitthekitten Green Belt

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    I was reading this article and thought it to be an interesting idea. What are other people's views? Would you be happy to teach in prison?
     
  2. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah... it's not like giving violent criminals a chance to punch each other without consequences could be a problem...
     
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  3. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

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    No. It would not serve any purpose other than to lead to more serious injuries to inmates and guards when they attacked.
     
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  4. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple Senior Master

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    If you want to do something, I think it would be much more useful to start a program for at risk kids (who may go to prison), as a way to give them some discipline, a role model, something to do, etc (similar to those youth basketball league programs). By the time they've already made the decisions that landed them in prison, and faced the consequences of those decisions, I would guess a lot of the benefit of something like that have gone away.
     
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  5. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    I know several people who work in various security level prisons in various capacities. I’ve had the misfortune of visiting a few friends in prison. I can honestly say without any doubt that I want absolutely nothing to do with prison.
     
  6. Saheim

    Saheim Green Belt

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    Even that brings its own risks.

    When I worked for Dept. of Juvenile Justice (as a detention officer) we had an outreach program come in and do an anti bullying seminar. Basically teaching kids to leave others alone and stand up for themselves. I was going off duty, as they came in. I noticed one carrying focus mits and a kick shield. All I could think was what a horrible idea it was to teach juvenile offenders to be better fighters. We constantly had fights, so I really can't say that it made it any better or worse. One thing that saved those kids tho, was their inability to fight. I had one incident where one ran up behind another who was seated on a chair. Before I could reach him, he managed to get two full swings with each hand, from behind, standing up, on a target that was sitting down. The kid who was attacked was uninjured. Imagine what most of us could do with ONE free shot from behind. I liked the fact the kids couldn't throw effective punches.

    I started my own outreach, after I resigned, but I taught then about religion not fighting. I think teaching someone how to be better at violence should come AFTER they have shown an ability to make responsible decisions. Just my opinion.
     
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  7. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple Senior Master

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    That's possible, but a few friends of mine that grew up in Queens, in not the best area, joined a program like that (I think for judo). It helped them, because they spent the time learning to fight, they didn't spend time with the 'negative influences'. They also didn't care when people tried to provoke them, because they knew what they could do. I would bet a lot of that had to do with their teacher though.
     
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  8. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple Senior Master

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    I agree that there are other options for outreach (religion, non-violent sports, etc.). But I would rather see an outreach program for boxing, then teaching inmates boxing.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018
  9. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Hell no that's a stupid idea. Not just for the safety reasons but these people are criminals why should they get free lessons.

    I'm also against how some prisons give them TVs and wi-fi. They're in there because they did bad stuff they don't deserve those luxuries.
     
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  10. Rabbitthekitten

    Rabbitthekitten Green Belt

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    So no one thinks that prison is about rehabilitation and that the discipline involved in martial arts could be a good way to get people to turn their lives around? Also to be fair this is a UK idea and I think UK prisons are a bit different to US prisons so maybe it wouldn't work in the US.
     
  11. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple Senior Master

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    Prison is both punishment and rehabilitation. But these are people that have broken the law, suggesting they would be more likely to do it again (I've read both that people that have been to jail once are much more likely to go back, and a much larger portion of the jailed population have antisocial personality disorder). I don't see how targeting that population and teaching them to hurt people more effectively could do more good than harm. There are other ways to help people turn their lives around.

    The idea apparently wouldn't work in the UK either, since if I read that article correctly, only one minister was up for it.
     
  12. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Or it could give them skills to be even more dangerous and violent. Plus the fact they're allowed to use the gym every day that could be seriously dangerous. It wouldn't work in the UK either. UK I prisons are just as bad I should know I worked in them for years. Yeah some prisoners can turn their life around but some will never change and as soon as they get out their back in in a couple weeks. So no I'd never back that idea heck I wouldn't even teach any ex cons. I'm not going to be responsible for some scumbag killing a random guy with my training I'm not having that blood on my hands
     
  13. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Yeo exactly and some people have a better life in prison than on the outside so try and get themselves locked up. If they want to give prisoners classes give them painting lessons or dancing lessons not skills to hurt people
     
  14. Saheim

    Saheim Green Belt

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    I've worked in several areas of criminal justice, including "corrections". Prison serves THREE purposes: (1) keep offenders separate from society (2) rehabilitate the offender (3) provide a sense of vindication for the victims. That last one is important because if ya deny people a sense of justice for long enough...... they will seek their own. Now ya got a chaotic society with normally prudent and productive folks committing murder.

    I like job training for inmates but I wouldn't teach them locksmithing or alarm installation. Skills that help them become better criminals should not be taught..... especially for FREE. Speaking of free, we gotta look at #3 here. The more privileges you extend to them, that are beyond the reach of the working man, the less a community starts to feel like the system has provided them justice.

    Personally, I am more in favor of exile and execution than the current system. Wall off an HUGE area, the Land of Bad. Staff the border with rifles (would require half the staff). They try to re enter our world.... STOP THEM. What goes on in Land of Bad? Don't know, don't really care. Then again, I do not support "crimes" without tort. But we're getting into other topics now.
     
  15. now disabled

    now disabled Master Black Belt

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    As a matter of interest what arts were you thinking of ?
     
  16. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    Having televisions though just reminds them of their loss of freedom, they get to watch other people having lives.
    I had a friend who was under house arrest for political activities ( in a country where you aren't allowed to have independent views) his house he said was comfortable, he had television, music, food etc all very nice but because he couldn't go outside, couldn't see his children in school activities, could take his wife out etc it was every bit as bad as being locked up in a cell with nothing. it's the loss of freedom that is the punishment, it doesn't matter what you have in your cell if you can't leave it.
     
  17. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    You think teaching them religion, the cause of more deaths, pain and suffering than anything else in human history ( with the possible exception of small pox and the b lack death )is better than teaching them about karate ?????
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2018
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  18. Saheim

    Saheim Green Belt

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    Absolutely! Religion can (and often does) provide the structure and behavioral guidelines that they need to make less destructive decisions.

    I think you are making a mistake a lot of folks do - viewing the situation from a perspective other than that of the involved party. You are entirely correct that giving religion to some folks can create extremists. Given to an educated, charismatic alpha could possibly result in a megalomaniac like Hitler (whose reign of terror was not rooted in religion btw). However giving it too someone who can not manage their own chaotic life or stop seeking instant gratification (dope, promiscuity) long enough to get a job or education has already proven to have significant positive effects on their lives. Love it or hate it, it is already tested and works.
     
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  19. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    Yep. Build their confidence and self-control, and you likely reduce the incidence of violence. Add the benefit of a physical outlet. Boxing and team sports have been used for this, and it’s mostly a function of the approach used by the instructor/coach.
     
  20. jobo

    jobo Senior Master

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    So it's good for them but bad for others, that's just the complaint that's leveled against ma in prison, which also has all the structure and discipline benefits that you claim for religion,

    The difference being i. One your teaching them to believe in fairy stories and the other your teaching them to believe I. Themselves.
    If some one is attacking you God won't help you,, but ma just might

    Or God Helps a those who help themselves
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2018
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