Sunday, October 22, 2006

What THEY gonna do when they come for you?

According to the BBC website today, the UK is becoming a country that is fearful of its teenagers.

The gist of the story follows:
Is Britain too fearful of its young?
Britain is in danger of becoming a nation fearful of its young, a report has claimed.
British adults are less likely than those in European countries to intervene to prevent teenagers committing anti-social behaviour, according to the Institute of Public Policy Research.
Nearly 1.7m people admitted they avoided going out after dark as a direct result of youths gathering. The report blamed changes in family, communities and the economy for the "increased risk in youth crime."

Now I have a solution, albeit radical, but hear me out. To go into it further, we have to have a bit of background.

The mists of time peel back to reveal a 5 year old girl sitting at the kitchen table chatting with her Mother. The walls are custard coloured and the girl is wearing an orange polo neck with a brown checked pinafore and plain brown tights. Raggedy Annie, her favourite doll is sitting on the chair beside her. The television in the corner is showing the news. The newsreader reads out something about prisons.

Young girl: "What is a prison Mummy?"

Mother: "A prison is a place you go to when you do VERY BAD THINGS, you are fed nothing else but hard bread and tepid water three times a day and have to do homework twice a day"

Young girl: "Well I am never going there, it sounds horrible!"

And 25 years later, funnily enough, I never has the hankering to do anything which would result in me exploring the truth of these statements. My Mother is an exceptionally clever woman.

So here is my idea, make prisons really horrible places. Not glamorous satellite TV watching hot lesbian sex pleasure breaks as portrayed on Bad Girls but really nasty places where you have to work your tush off (but no harder than the average Mother with a young child because that would be cruel!)

Here is how I see a typical day going:

6:30 - Bell goes for get up (in line with most of the land so no unnecessary cruelty there)
7.00 - Breakfast - Stewed fruit and grains OR Porridge OR Muesli and Coffee OR Tea. As much water as the prisoners would like (tap of course) and a mountain of brown bread and margarine, 1 slice for everyone in the house (to encourage latecomers not to be so late)
7.45 - Report for work with a choice of tasks for the mornings:
1) Washing the terry nappies of the nations babies
2) Putting together Ikea furniture
3) Reviewing the Channel5 schedule for women's magazines
4) Repairing clothes sent in by people who cannot afford new ones
5) *I'll fill these and proceeding ones in as they occur to me*
11.00 - Humanitarian Break
11.15 - Back to work
12.30 - Lunch - Fish, potatoes and veg. OR Veg. Lasagna and salad OR Minced beef in tomato sauce with rice and veg. with as much milk and tap water as the inmates want to drink. A piece of fruit to follow.
1.30 - Back to work on a different task from the morning ones
3.45 - Comfort break
4.00 - Back to work
5.30 - Finish work for the day
6.00 - Dinner - Veg. casserole OR Fish and potato pie OR lamp chops with potato and veg. Fruit salad to follow. As much milk and tap water as the inmates want to drink.
7.00 - Evening classes: Understanding Shakespeare OR how to assemble Ikea furniture OR advanced laundry classes OR manging personal finance OR basic reading and writing OR basis maths. Classes are optional.
For people who do not do classes, their options will be cleaning their cells or reading from the internal library which will not stock any books written before 1900. Of course books will be sourced in any language a prisoner reads best in as long as they are pre-1900.
No book written by a dictator, mad person, which was the subject of a court trial or is in any way controversial will be allowed. This is to protect the prisoners.
8.00 - Classes over and time for communal chatter, the general theme of which will revolve around how horrible porridge made with water is.
9.00 - Clean cells for an hour with tepid soapy water and a scrubbing brush. Rubber gloves will be handed out for good behaviour.
10.00 - Locked in cells and lights out.

You see (hypothetically) I would like a break from my family and a new expensive coat. So let me weight it up, if I steal the coat and don't get caught, I am one coat up. If I am caught, I get a warm dry cell, three nice meals a day under the human rights act, no working day, free trade classes which I could not afford on the outside and satellite TV. Mmmmmm.... what to do.....

But what if the option was porridge, unpleasant manual work and no TV. I reckon, I might just stay at home and perhaps get a job but I am odd like that.


Violet said...

you ommitted the possibility of becoming some large and ugly troll's bitch, but then that's probably more of a problem for men in prison.

fjl said...

It's a healthy youth that puts the wind up alot of corrupt old cronies. :-)

Rach said...

I am so with you on your coments in this post. My thoughts exactly. You know some kids offend as prison is better and safer than their home life. I agree with your every word, especially assembling the Ikea furniture. lol

Karl said...

Brilliant! I need to hire you for my campaign. Your prison reform ideas are marvelous.

fjl said...

Merry Christmas and enjoy the break.