Monday 14 October 2013
Vicky Pryce will do fine. But there are so many other ex-cons who won’t
Discussion has focused on the horror of middle-class people in jail
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/com ... 79711.html
It would be easy to write a column damning Vicky Pryce as she tours the studios, promoting a new book inspired by her experiences of prison. “Crime doesn’t pay,” the expression goes, and yet here is a privileged, well-connected public figure, using her imprisonment for criminality to flog a book and rehabilitate her reputation. Contrast her with a young black man, lacking stable friendships let along contacts in the British Establishment, released from prison, for ever treated with suspicion, with few prospects of getting secure work or any sort of comfortable future.
But it was not Vicky Pryce who designed the hideous injustices of British society, and her media blitz is a useful hook for a debate about our bleak, discriminatory, counter-productive justice system. Again, it is a tragedy that it takes the imprisonment of white, privileged public figures like Pryce and her fellow studio-touring ex-husband to provoke such a debate.
The discussion has focused on the horror of middle-class people having to endure the misery of prison, as though it is worse because they supposedly have further to fall. Her diaries revealed “what life is really like for a middle-class woman inside of the country’s toughest prisons,” salivated the Daily Mail. But again, here is simply the sad reality of how our country is structured....
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