The interview Chris Grayling (the new and, in my opinion, terrible Justice Secretary) gave with the BBC this morning said Sky Sports subscriptions and 18 certificate DVDs are the biggest problems facing British jails. Well, Mr Justice Secretary, congratulations. You’ve managed to find the perfect way to inflame public sensibilities so the average DM reader will feel outraged and not focus on the real issues.
You see, it’s hard to focus on real issues given no one mentioned them. To avoid boring you all to tears I’m going to highlight the major flaw in Grayling’s proposal: privileges in prison must be earned. Which is all well and good. But the thing is, prisons are expensive. And because we insist on increasing prison populations year on year, we can’t actually afford to run educational courses. They’re sporadic, often cancelled and enormously over-subscribed.