Asking Questions

July 15th, 2008

I was surprised and disappointed at both the spirit and level of thinking offered in letters to the editor in response to the article "A Nation of Jailers" in the March/April issue (Mail Room, May/June). Shouldn't we be asking questions about why the United States has the highest percentage of its population behind bars in the world? None of the letters addressed this fact. My guess is that racism is one of several variables involved. Shouldn't we be asking what the high rate of imprisonment says about America and its policies rather than playing that tired, old anti-intellectual blame game? I was heartened to learn that Professor of Economics Glenn Loury's investigations are opening up new areas for research. This reflects well on Brown as a great university. I found Professor Loury's life journey poignant and relevant to the subject matter. The author deserves an award for her thorough and highly original reporting.

Paul R. Hurlburt Jr. '67
Bethesda, Md.

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July/August 2008