The hidden engine behind the state's well-oiled prison machine is cold, hard cash. A majority of Louisiana inmates are housed in for-profit facilities, which must be supplied with a constant influx of human beings or a $182 million industry will go bankrupt....
One of the legacies of slavery is racism - of which Louisiana has plenty. But less recognized is that harsh punishment is another. The New Orleans Times Picayune tells the story:
by Cindy Chang - The Times Picayune
Louisiana is the world's prison capital. The state imprisons more of its people, per head, than any of its U.S. counterparts. First among Americans means first in the world. Louisiana's incarceration rate is nearly triple Iran's, seven times China's and 10 times Germany's.