PARIS TRAGEDY: A CASE OF A RADICALIZED GROUP OF FELON ON A RAMPAGE
(Note: The tragedy in Paris where hundreds of people were wantonly massacred revealed some areas of serious concern. One of those identified as culprit was a petty criminal according to State Police. Interestingly, the suspect has been convicted several times and as yet to check his jail time. How the felon got radicalized is still a question mark. Let me offer an insight.)
“Deradicalization” in prison is a correct proposition. It is nipping a grave challenge in the bud. To start with, one must attempt to define what radicalization really means and how it inflicts a person before deradicalization begins. The processes of radicalization usually lurch when a person is under the custody of law.
An inmate is radicalized when slapped with stiff restrictions to the point of dehumanizing him. He is initially sent to a congested facility where fear, mayhem, insanity, epidemic abound. He is subjected to all forms of difficulties and uncalled-for embarrassment. He is shamed and his privacy exposed for the entire world to hate. He becomes a whipping boy in media and criminal justice practitioners would use him as target board to get public awareness points. Politics pervades even in this manner.
Raiding prison facilities and confiscating contrabands are regular features of prison administration. It should be conducted on a regular basis until the entire area has been saturated and cleared. It is the only way to promote stability in a homogenous community. BUT when this activity is used to humiliate and mortify inmates, then government whether they like it or not, has already planted the seed of radicalization on the person. While officers bask in the limelight as latter day heroes projecting vigilance and championing discipline, they have instantly pushed the prison community, on most inmates as a matter of course, into the precipice of revulsion.
Forget the “terrorists”, those suspected of conducting mayhem in the name of their faith or religion. Forget the captive insurgents, they who were incarcerated for pursuing ideological struggles. They never matter inside the prison community. They are even seen as mere segments if not a regular fixture without any value in terms of daily survival. Their thoughts and persuasion are never a cause for changes among relationships forged within the walls. These “radicals” are mere ornaments without effect and influence. To believe that these “terrorists” are supplying the radicalization process among fellow inmates is hogwash and pure fantasy.
What radicalizes a felon is the way he is treated by his custodians.
Once an inmate regains his freedom, after years of being subjected to humiliation, shame and disgrace, his hostility is focused on the world. He mounts his revenge on the universe and would wreak havoc with all heinous dispositions he could muster.
Note that for every “terror cell” or crime syndicate for that matter, using the language of security analysts, a person with prison record is always behind it. He supplies the nerve and impunity, the cruelty and barbarity, the spite and brutality whenever they are called to action. It is almost second nature. He learned and experienced it first hand while under custody of law and his institutional handlers made it so.
There is rhyme and reason whenever the courts of law impose imprisonment. The judicial system believes that there is something good in man despite his offense and therefore he should be given the necessary period within which to get penance and eventually rejoin the mainstream of free society as a rehabilitated person—law abiding and socially constructive. That is the ideal.
The reality however is different. As soon as the suspect is under the jurisdiction of law, he instantly gets the bashing. He is paraded for the world to ogle at. He is deprived of amenities. Just check on those suspects who were hauled for “smuggling” bullets at the airport. They were instantly handcuffed, detained and given the run around without the benefit of having a counsel of their own.
Detainees or prisoners, more so, never get what is humanely due them. If they are resourceful enough, then they are in for a surprise. They are up for a controversy if not a scandal of monstrous proportion once they improvise. They are fodder for politicians to make their legends more legendary. They are pictured as villains, outlaws, and scoundrels.
Revenge is their only way to express their point. And they subscribe to the dictum, “don’t get mad, get even!”
In other words, radicalization sets immediately in motion as soon as a person is placed under custody of law. Expect the person therefore to be a terror one day.
One need not expect that day to come however. It has already been shown on the way crime is conducted at present. It’s a daily fare, a constant fact of existence which preoccupies social life. It attacks as when a judge is assassinated. It explodes and destroys. It forays as what happened in Paris.
It can strike anytime.
Politics indeed has endangered humanity in a short span of time.