An interesting idea from the Washington Post today. Why not bring back flogging for nonviolent criminals in lieu of prison time...or at least allow them the option to choose between the two punishments? Flogging was abolished in this country because people began to view it as barbaric, and as a violation of the 8th Amendment's ban on "cruel and unusual punishment." But what does it say about our criminal justice system that most people would probably opt for this barbaric punishment instead of the more "humane" punishment of locking them in a cage and subjecting them to daily rapes for years at a time?
Let's reserve prison for the truly dangerous people, and start using alternative punishments for everyone else. Flogging would certainly be cheaper for the government, less likely to put the criminal in contact with other criminals, and IMO a far more civilized punishment than the conditions that exist in our prisons.