We've been on this before, but have new good company. A serious American cliché is that any of us can serve our debt to society in prison, thus behind rehabilitated and re-entering as full citizens. Not bloody likely.
Our Attorney General, Eric Holder, has put the lie to that. He is working to see laws past to remedy huge civil-rights wrongs. In particular, he lists the many states where convicted criminals permanently lose their ability to participate in democracy. They can't vote, for the worst example.
Much of America thinks that's swell, He cited detailed analysis and study proving that doing so dramatically increases recidivism. Meanwhile, many folk figure if you commit a crime and get convicted, there really is no such thing as serving your debt.