The idea -- why doesn't the USA's prison industries system (which historically has made furniture, clothing, etc.) add butterfly farms to their operations? Yes butterfly farms. I toured a butterfly farm for the first time in 1997 as a student in Costa Rica. As it turns out the life expectancy of most butterflies is about 30 days so various institutions like science museums, zoos, etc. need a constant supply of butterflies which creates the demand. Here are several reasons I thought adding butterfly farms to the prison industries program would be a good idea:
- Such a profession would help pacify prisoners -- if you don't believe it just take a tour of such a farm and talk to the workers
- Butterfly farms require very little in terms of tools like building furniture does thus reducing the chance that prisoners will steal equipment or build their own weapons
- Having more butterflies is good for the world's environment since they play an important role in the pollination of plants
- Ideally it would help some prisoners develop a better sense of the value and balance of life in the world
Call me crazy if you want but with prison populations and expenses constantly increasing in the USA it is time to debate some creative ideas such as this one.