It couldn't be worse: why prison rules in Japan are worse than in Africa

It couldn't be worse: why prison rules in Japan are worse than in Africa

16 September , 14:09In the world
The Japanese are still convinced that the more severe are the conditions of the prisoners, the more chances they have for their correction.

Popular blogger Valery Petrov was interested in an amazing fact. Everyone knows what successes Japan has achieved not only in the economy, but also in social policy over the last century, but few have heard that in this, by Western standards, a democratic country, truly Eastern cruelty towards prisoners remains - its prisons are known as one of the the most severe in the world. It is worth noting that the crime rate in this country is extremely low.

In the places of confinement in Japan, complete order reigns, and the guards practically do not violate (unlike, for example, Russian) the prison charter, however, the rules for keeping prisoners are very strict, and this mainly concerns household trifles. The logic is simple: the strictest conditions should once and for all discourage the violation of the law, and it is simply impossible to adapt to these conditions.

For example, prisoners spend almost all their free time on extremely uncomfortable very small stools, while they have no right to speak or even look at each other. When working, the poor are obliged to look exclusively at the workplace. The violator of all these rules is immediately sent to the punishment cell, in which, although it is clean and dry, the prisoner must endure there from 8 am to 5 pm, sitting with a straight back, and in case of violation, he will be punished with an electric shock.

In addition, the punishment lies in the fact that prisoners are practically deprived of any contact with the world of freedom - very rarely meetings with relatives and no phones at all. This condition is especially difficult for foreigners who have called Japanese prisons "hell hole".

One American, describing his life in prison, said that he was immediately given a set of rules of hundreds of points, which he was obliged to strictly follow. For example, his occupation in solitary confinement was the useless smoothing of crumpled foil for cakes. The work is truly Sisyphean, because immediately after he performed it, the warden again crumpled all the foil so that the prisoner did everything from the beginning.

The rules include literally all the actions that a prisoner must perform: how to look, how to sit, how to stand, how to walk, how to use the toilet, how to arrange personal belongings. Any puncture - and a punishment cell!

Inmates are allowed to take a shower twice a week. There are no air conditioners or heating in the cells, and it is truly dangerous to get sick, since doctors rarely consult and only on a separate request from a prisoner.

Wake up in prisons at 6:45, and immediately after the inspection of prisoners and cells, work from 8 to 17. Moreover, for inspection the prisoners strip naked, raise their arms and legs, stick out their tongue, and so on. Any violation of a clear sequence threatens a new search. They walk to work strictly looking at the back of the head of the one in front, it is forbidden to avert their eyes. The prisoners have the right to talk with each other only during lunch, which lasts half an hour, and which should be expected while sitting with closed eyes, and start eating only on signal - otherwise, a punishment cell. Communication is also allowed during a short free time in the evening after dinner. It can be held either in the library or in front of the TV. You cannot look the guards in the eyes, but only in front of you, and you should get up from your seat only with the permission of the guard. Lights out at 21 o'clock, and sleep in a strictly regulated position - lying on your back and stretching your arms at the seams, so that there is no way to hide something.

The answer to this state of affairs is simple: the current "Prison Law" in Japan was adopted already in 1908, and although it was canceled in 2006, its rules remained exactly the same as they were, and are calculated as before that suffering, the criminal will be cleansed of the filth and return to life in society, its worthy member.

True, attempts are already being made to reform the punishment system. So, in 2008, the first private prison was opened in Japan, which receives money for the maintenance of prisoners from the state as well. The routine is softer, the conditions are more comfortable. But it contains people who have committed minor crimes.

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