The sad truth about veterans behind bars

Apr 2011
37,967
12,802
Under your skin
#1
It's all too common for veterans in the US to wind up in jail.
And behind bars, many of them don't have access to the services they need to get their lives back on track.

That's what the participants on the A&E documentary series "60 Days In" learned during their stay at Clark County Jail in southern Indiana.
The show follows seven people who go undercover as inmates for two months to expose problems within the system.
One of the participants, Zac, estimated that 10% of the inmates he lived with were veterans, all of whom suffered from depression or post-traumatic stress disorder. Like many drug-addicted inmates, they often resorted to homemade drugs to self-medicate.
He said that most inmates weren't aware the jail offered veterans advocacy services and an Alcoholics Anonymous support group — and that jail employees rarely advertised the fact that such programs existed.

"Regardless of whether or not they're in jail, they still took the same oath that they would protect the country with their life," Zac told Business Insider. "They still deserve to be treated for issues they developed because of that oath they took."
Veterans in jail are more likely to suffer from mental-health issues than other inmates, according to the most recent data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics. Veterans are much more likely than civilians to commit suicide.
Zac himself is a veteran, having served as a combat engineer with the Marines in Afghanistan.
When he returned home from deployment in 2010, he said, he refused to talk about his experience with friends and family. For a few months he found comfort in alcohol, consuming more than $1,500 worth a month.

"60 Days In" on veterans in jail - Business Insider
 
Likes: 4 people

HCProf

Moderator
Sep 2014
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USA
#2
W really should not incarcerate our Vets...there are better options...house arrest with therapy or a hospital depending on the crime. They have already experienced "death row"...it is called active combat.
 
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Jan 2012
3,527
1,617
Vacaville, CA
#3
If "It's all too common for veterans in the US to wind up in jail," then one has to question the premise that military service builds character and instills self-discipline.
 
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Snikitz

Former Staff
Mar 2011
13,627
5,094
Split between Minnesota and New Orleans
#4
If "It's all too common for veterans in the US to wind up in jail," then one has to question the premise that military service builds character and instills self-discipline.

Today the U.S. military is itsy bitsy tiny which has required back to back combat deployments of U.S. troops to meet mission objectives. The troops operate under a poorly considered rules of engagement which has resulted in unnecessary casualties.

Relationships and marriages fail more often than not. Equipment is worn out and out of date, supplies are often not readily available, troops lack basic support that they deserve under President Obama whose popularity among troops is lower than that of Osama Bin laden.

When the troops return to civilian life, they are treated with disrespect by our government, their promised access to medical and psychological care often unavailable. There are few services to help these young men and women re-connect with society.

Meanwhile Syrian Refugees and illegals enjoy unlimited attention in the media, better health care and access to social programs to help them integrate into society.


PTSD is a recognized issue and it's association with military service under harsh conditions is well documented.

When left untreated, PTSD can lead to depression, alcoholism, drug addiction and suicide.

22 veterans every day blow their brains out.


Does Military service build character and instill self-discipline?

As a retired veteran I say it all depends on the leadership which starts at the presidency.
 
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HCProf

Moderator
Sep 2014
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13,528
USA
#5
Today the U.S. military is itsy bitsy tiny which has required back to back combat deployments of U.S. troops to meet mission objectives. The troops operate under a poorly considered rules of engagement which has resulted in unnecessary casualties.

Relationships and marriages fail more often than not. Equipment is worn out and out of date, supplies are often not readily available, troops lack basic support that they deserve under President Obama whose popularity among troops is lower than that of Osama Bin laden.

When the troops return to civilian life, they are treated with disrespect by our government, their promised access to medical and psychological care often unavailable. There are few services to help these young men and women re-connect with society.

Meanwhile Syrian Refugees and illegals enjoy unlimited attention in the media, better health care and access to social programs to help them integrate into society.


PTSD is a recognized issue and it's association with military service under harsh conditions is well documented.

When left untreated, PTSD can lead to depression, alcoholism, drug addiction and suicide.

22 veterans every day blow their brains out.


Does Military service build character and instill self-discipline?

As a retired veteran I say it all depends on the leadership which starts at the presidency.
I think it depends on what we put them through. And yes...Soldiers come home different than when they left...I love the discipline of my military college students...they are the best. :) The problem with the last conflict...our solider's did not get any rest...we just kept sending them back, deployment after deployment to a hell hole. How much could a human being witness in a place like the ME? Chris Kyle is a perfect example, he did 4 tours, as a sniper, with very little rest in between. Our active combat Vets will never be the same...and it is sad.
 

Snikitz

Former Staff
Mar 2011
13,627
5,094
Split between Minnesota and New Orleans
#6
I think it depends on what we put them through. And yes...Soldiers come home different than when they left...I love the discipline of my military college students...they are the best. :) The problem with the last conflict...our solider's did not get any rest...we just kept sending them back, deployment after deployment to a hell hole. How much could a human being witness in a place like the ME? Chris Kyle is a perfect example, he did 4 tours, as a sniper, with very little rest in between. Our active combat Vets will never be the same...and it is sad.
My oldest daughter was deployed to Afghanistan 3 times 18 months, the last redeployment immediately after being injured which should have kept her back at least a full year. Her fiancee was deployed three straight years, he kept getting extended. Miranda was a lieutenant in the medical corps, James is still a Captain in logistics.
 
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HCProf

Moderator
Sep 2014
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13,528
USA
#7
My oldest daughter was deployed to Afghanistan 3 times 18 months, the last redeployment immediately after being injured which should have kept her back at least a full year. Her fiancee was deployed three straight years, he kept getting extended. Miranda was a lieutenant in the medical corps, James is still a Captain in logistics.
How is your daughter? I am sure she saw a lot that she will never forget.
 
Jul 2014
38,818
33,796
Border Fence
#9
W really should not incarcerate our Vets...there are better options...house arrest with therapy or a hospital depending on the crime. They have already experienced "death row"...it is called active combat.
Law enforcement and the judical system is set up to deal with crime and punishment.

Our law enforcement is not perpared to deal with social issues. Their training is in a stictly law enforcment realm.

Jails do have social services...but having the service and putting the vets in contact with the system is not always effective.

"Street" vets are not all that much different that other "street" populations. Many are drug and alcohol addicted and with a myriad of mental health and health issues.

Sometimes jails work as the contact point to put vets in contact with social services, sometimes jail is just jail.
 
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Snikitz

Former Staff
Mar 2011
13,627
5,094
Split between Minnesota and New Orleans
#10
You had me right up to this part. It's Congress's fault, too. Let's not politicize the issue - it's too important.

My point is that the president is the CIC. He has the means and the responsibility to bring these issues before congress.

So you have a point - but I feel that as the CIC, the problem starts with a president.
 

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