(FOX NEWS - OPINION) — The magnitude of the prison crisis that plagues our country is striking. Almost 2.3 million Americans sit behind bars, while nearly one-third of American adults have a criminal history – a serious detriment to their ability to earn a living and support a family.
Prison should offer an opportunity for prisoners to reflect on their sins, reform their ways and re-enter society as productive citizens. But our criminal justice system overwhelmingly fails at this crucial task. Two-thirds of offenders are rearrested within just three years after their release.
This should alarm all Americans, especially Christians and other people of faith. A criminal justice system that prioritizes punishment over rehabilitation is fundamentally at odds with a faith that preaches forgiveness and redemption.
The faithful have a leading role to play in the successful rehabilitation of our prisoners. Yes, we need policymakers to reform our sentencing laws and businesses to extend job opportunities to ex-offenders. But those efforts will not be successful without the leading light of the faith community, which has more than 2,000 years of experience helping people find redemption.
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