Americans make up just 5% of the world's population but account for 25% of the population in behind bars, why?

Can you still call the US the freest country on earth?

12 Answers

  • Mike W
    Lv 7
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Maybe we're one of the few countries who keeps an accurate count of how many people we imprison, and perhaps the other countries don't mess around with prision, you either get fined or executed.

  • 9 years ago

    Because the citizens have let the powers that be, get more and more control over every part of our lives without fighting back.

    This :"free" country has more laws on the books, federal, state, city and other local governments designed to incarcerate, and fine the citizens than any two or three other civilized nations on earth.

    This is the problem when the politicians have too much time on their hands, and not enough uprisings from the population.

    Should the people ever decide enough is enough and march on Washington to revolt, we would be shot down like dogs, no different than the present incidents in Syria. Waco was a good example.

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago


    Congress gets a feather in its cap every time they create the illusion of 'safer streets' by expanding the definition of "crime" to include things lots of people do. I may not like it that people buy and sell and use cannabis. But if everything disliked by one US Citizen were a crime, EVERYbody would be a criminal. It's still against the law in Vermont to whistle under water!

    I know of only one person in DC with the guts to support this Constitutional restraint on govt.

    Dr. Ron Paul


  • 9 years ago

    What is the source of your statistics?

    I question that we have 25 percent of the incarcerated people on earth, but a large segment of our population in prison or jail simply suggests we are enforcing our laws and that we have a lot of people who have violated them.

    We have a very mixed population and some segments of it tend to have high crime rates. Other countries probably have somewhat lower crime rates and may have other punishments than incarceration to deal with criminals.

    I would suggest that several other countries, notably Russia and China, may have large incarcerated populations that are not generally reported statistically. Lengths of time spent in jail are another consideration. Many Americans have spent short periods of time in jail for minor offenses. (I never have.) Long-term inmates tend to be a smaller segment of our total population.

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  • 9 years ago

    I have HEARD that we incarcerate people for crimes that civilized countries do not -- I guess they use fines for minor things that we use prison for.

    AND our sentences are harsher than those in civilized countries.

    I've always thought it was silly to say the US is the FREEEST country on Earth. It's simply not true that every OTHER country is a totalitarian dictatorship. There are such countries, but there are also many free countries -- countries in which the people have basic rights and liberties.

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    The U S has a larger drug addiction problem than most other countries. Changing the law by legalizing drug use would have as much effect on this as DUI laws have on alcoholism. The market is here.

  • 9 years ago

    In Somalia & the Sudan the criminals run the country, they will not jail themselves; In India and Russia you can buy your way out of anything. Danes and Norwegians just don't have a lot to be violent about, on and on. There are numerous factors at play here. Your question is useless without considering them.

  • 9 years ago

    Republicans fight for their right to revoke others'.

  • 9 years ago

    Different countries have different laws, so I don't think this is an accurate comparison.

  • 9 years ago

    Is your definition of freedom anarchy?

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