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Texas governor refuses to follow federal rape prevention law

Apparently it's too expensive to treat Americans in prison as if they were people deserving of any kind of consideration or protection.

Rick Perry orders Texas prisons not to follow federal rape prevention law | The Raw Story

Perry argued that because 40 percent of the correctional officers in male prisons were female, it would be impossible to comply with rules that prevented “cross-gender viewing” of inmates.

The governor also complained that the law “infringes on Texas’ right to establish the state’s own age of criminal responsibility” by mandating that inmates 17 years old and younger be separated from adults. And he said “specific staffing ratios for juvenile detention facilities” were unreasonably high.

“I encourage the administration to change these standards and do so soon,” Perry concluded. “Absent standards that acknowledge the operational realities in our prisons and jails, I will not sign your form and I will encourage my fellow governors to follow suit. In the meantime, Texas will continue the programs it has already implemented to reduce prison rapes.”

The San Antonio Express-News noted that the failure to follow federal law could result in criminal penalties, but federal officials have said Perry would not be charged with a crime. Officials from the Justice Department were expecting to meet with Texas officials to discuss the problem instead.

In a Texas Department of Criminal Justice training video for the Prison Rape Elimination Act that was leaked last year, a prison official explains that “offender on offender, or staff on offender abuse allows predatory offenders to grow strong at our expense. As they become powerful, our strength as a security force declines.”