The continuing saga of California's massively overcrowded prisons hit's a new low this week. SCOTUS refused to hear Cali's request to stay the order issued by a federal panel of Judge's recently. From Jurist:
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation issued a plan Friday to reduce prison overcrowding as orderedby a special panel of federal judges in August, but the plan falls short of the order's requirements. According to the CDCR, the plan could reduce the overcrowding rate from 190 percent to 155 percent in the next three years. This falls short of the federal court order requiring a reduction to 137.5 percent, or a release of nearly 43,000 inmates from the state's 33 prison facilities, in the next two years. The plan provides various ways of reducing the overcrowding rate including transferring more prisoners to out-of-state prisons, GPS monitoring of inmates who violate parole, commuting sentences of inmates who are eligible for deportation, and building new facilities or converting unused space. It is not clear what action the court will take against the CDCR for failing to meet its mandate, but options include holding Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in contempt of court or instituting its own plan. With its filing of the plan, the CDCR also said that is was not abandoning its appeal of the special panel's ruling to the US Supreme Court.Like rats in a cage, the inmates of California's prison system are stacked in every available space throughout the state's prisons. The inevitable will occur, just like when too many rats live in one cage.
Last week, the Supreme Court denied California's request to stay the court order temporarily. The special panel's ruling was the result of a lawsuit brought by two inmates against the state's prison system, alleging that the overcrowding had resulted in a failure to provide adequate physical and mental health care, depriving them of their constitutional rights. The prison system in the state was originally built to handle around 80,000 prisoners, and it is estimated that there are currently 168,000 inmates being held in those facilities.
No one is saying they should all be set free. What I am saying is this:
If you fuckers can't provide them with the most basic of human services, you need to deal with the consequences of your actions. NOW muthafuckas.
This has gone on far too long. Even SCOTUS is not amused. They are human beings first, prisoners second.