Prisoners' Rights

Overview

The movement for prisoners' rights in the United States is based on the idea that prisoners, though they are deprived of liberty, are entitled to other basic constitutional rights. Recent legislation governing certain areas of prisoners' rights reflects this. When Congress passed the Prison Litigation Reform Act in 1996, it intended to stem a tide of frivolous lawsuits that threatened to overwhelm the court system. But critics of the act allege that lawsuits may be the only means prisoners have to ensure that ...
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Overview

The movement for prisoners' rights in the United States is based on the idea that prisoners, though they are deprived of liberty, are entitled to other basic constitutional rights. Recent legislation governing certain areas of prisoners' rights reflects this. When Congress passed the Prison Litigation Reform Act in 1996, it intended to stem a tide of frivolous lawsuits that threatened to overwhelm the court system. But critics of the act allege that lawsuits may be the only means prisoners have to ensure that their rights are protected. In 1993 and 2000, Congress passed laws to protect prisoners' religious liberty; opponents charge that these acts are too restrictive for prison administrators. Prisoners' Rights examines these issues and others from different perspectives, incorporating excerpts from legal documents, court cases, and political commentary and critique.

About the Author:
David L. Hudson, Jr., is a research attorney with the First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Greg M. Romaneck
If you have committed a heinous crime should your basic human rights be protected in prison? Should prisoners have the ability to sue their jailors? Is religious freedom guaranteed in prison regardless of the offenses a prisoner has committed? Without legal recourse would prisoners in even the most democratic societies become victims rather than wrong-doers? What is the definition of just and cruel punishment? It is questions such as these that are capably featured in this volume of the illustrated "Point/Counterpoint" series. In the pages of this book readers will tackle these difficult questions while encountering cogent arguments for opposing views. In this particular work this yin and yang approach works well and results in a thought-provoking experience for readers. Like other books in the parent series, Prisoners' Rights will cause its readers to ponder a complicated issue while viewing both sides of the argument. This approach broadens an individual's perspective and allows them to realize that things are generally not black and white in terms of decision making. Reviewer: Greg M. Romaneck
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