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Is smuggling goods to prisoners moral or ethical?

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I ask this because my friend works in a prison and one of his fellow guards smuggles in basic things like cigarettes and weed and stuff like that. When he told me this i immediately wondered what the objectivist views on this would be.

your thoughts?

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I ask this because my friend works in a prison and one of his fellow guards smuggles in basic things like cigarettes and weed and stuff like that. When he told me this i immediately wondered what the objectivist views on this would be.

your thoughts?

By Objectivist standards, the question would be, "is this an activity that is in the guards rational self interest?" self interest maybe, rational...no.

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By Objectivist standards, the question would be, "is this an activity that is in the guards rational self interest?" self interest maybe, rational...no.

thats what i was thinking, that they would be dealing with irrationality and therefore not a good thing.

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Offhand, I would say that there is nothing wrong with it. Smuggling illegal substances is obviously inappropriate, but if we are speaking of trivial things, such as toothbrushes or magazines, that depends on his own rational judgment, assuming that it is permitted.

If it was permitted, it wouldn't be smuggling. No, it's not moral for someone to sign up to do a job, and then intentionally break the rules of a job. It's a form of fraud, and the guy should lose his job as soon as he's caught.

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If it was permitted, it wouldn't be smuggling. No, it's not moral for someone to sign up to do a job, and then intentionally break the rules of a job. It's a form of fraud, and the guy should lose his job as soon as he's caught.

English is not my first language, so I am not familiar with the word. I just assumed its meaning, because I am in a hurry. In that case, yes, I agree with you.

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Is the prison in question in a Free country, in which prisoners are only held when it's been demonstrated in a valid court of law that the prisoner in question has violated the rights of some other?

Is the guard working at the prison voluntarily?

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Prisoners are often masters of manipulation, getting the guard to smuggle items in exchange for not making his job difficult or helping him against some other prisoner. It starts with things like chewing gum or magazines, then cigarettes, weed, heroine, and eventually weapons and messages to gang members on the outside. Each time, the prisoner then can hold the threat of exposing the guard's activites over him in order to extort more from him, then eventually for protection in prison crimes. I can't think of any reason why it would be in your self interest to smuggle anything to a prisoner, unless your goal was something like breaking out a person who is held immorally for political offenses in a dictatorship or something like that.

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also there is the issue of the degradation of the prison system and the lack of respect for the justice system that usually result from the spread of illegal activities that people on the "right side" of the law practice. as well as it not truly being in the guards self interest, it is also just a really destructive practice in general. if you value the rule of law then yes it would immoral

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I am a prison officer, and have been for over 10 years. Objectively speaking, it is immoral to accept a job and then to abuse the trust put in you by your employer. Also, the officer may only be smuggling inconsequencial items at this time, but by even smuggling one item into the prison, he/she is open to blackmail to put pressure on him/her to bring in more substantial/dangerous items that could threaten both his/her own, and his/her collegues safety.

Most prisoners do develop manipulative skills and quite a few like to trade knowledge for favours, so any guard smuggling for one person may soon find themselves attracting the attentions of less considerate criminals. If this guard sees no harm in smuggling weed, maybe a phone could be brought in (which will threaten the security of the establishment) or he/she could just pass on information that could lead to an escape. It is short-sighted, as well as dishonest, for any guard to give any help or succour to any criminal beyond those defined by his duties as an officer.

You'll notice that I made no mention of the illegality of this guard's actions-this was do as to not muddy the waters with questions arising from the legality of the sentencing of the prisoner involved, as the discussion could degenerate into a "helping an innocent man wrongfully accused" senario, which should be dealt with(if you belive the prisoner) through assisting him/her through any legal means at your disposal.

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