Is it wrong to call an incarerated person a convict?

A simple yes or know will suffice.



Those steroid pumping, bad attitude, jerkwod sheriffs that run the downtown jail in Houston that busted me and my friends for disorderely(sp)conduct for fighting back when I was in Jr. Colledge.

I will never forget them suckers. "COME HERE CONVICT, GO OVER THERE CONVICT, SHUTUP CONVICT, LOOK HERE CONVICT!!! And on and on and on.

I was more scared of the testosterone filled sheriffs than I was of all the inmates in the jail. I mean a bunch of us in the jail were actually discussing if we should try to kick butts or not(since they had clubs we decided not to :wink: ).

But we did have the same conversation as you are asking here. Since we hadn’t been convicted should they be calling us convicts or just inmates?

I think inmates.

I know this was a bit longer than a “yes” or “no”. Sorry.

College. Man I need to proof read my post more. Please no jokes I caught it fast.

A simple yes or know probably won’t suffice.

If they’ve been convicted of a major felony, then they’ve earned the moniker.

If they were convicted and incarcerated for a lesser crime, “convict” is technically correct but probably overkill.

Convicts if they’ve been convicted of something.

Inmates or “incarcerated persons” (I’ve never heard that particular gentle euphemism before) if they’ve not been convicted of any offense.

Good answer. So we were right maybe we should start shooting steroids get big and tough and go back and kick those jerkwod sheriffs butts. :smiley:

You’re lying, aren’t you?

You actually got this treatment when you were on that Georgia chain gang, right? I remember you…you were the CONVICT three leg-shackles to my left.

I have to agree with Paladine. I’ve been arrested and incarcerated a number of times, but never convicted, so I think calling me a convict would not be appropriate.

another wrinkle. I’ve worked in that field for 20+ years.

The lines to me are: anyone who is currently incarcerated is correctly identified as an “inmate” regardless of conviction status (you can be in jail awaiting trial, you’re still an “inmate of the county jail”, however, to the best of my knowledge, you cannot be in a prison without a conviction)

Anyone who has been convicted of a crime can correctly be identified as a “convict” (or my preference “ex-con” unless they tell me they’re about to do something :smiley: ) regardless of living situation.

So, some one can be a “convict” but not an inmate.
Some one can be both a convict AND an inmate
Some one can be an inmate but not a convict and
some one can be neither an inmate nor a convict…
so Crunchy would, at this time (assuming he’s not currently residing in a jail) would be neither, although at an earilier point in time he may have been an “inmate”.
there, did that help???

Very good point, Palandine and Crunchy Frog. I stand corrected.

Thank you everyone. I was really looking for an answer of calling someone something once they have gone to a certain place. This is really a spin off thread from my thread in GQ asking “Is there a name” and a GD thread in which Triskadeckamus took issue. I suppose the thread could be retitled Is it wrong to call an incarcerated person an inmate or convict where the appropriate term fits the current status of the individual.


Prisoner works well enough for me.

The general term is inmates. However I have known some inmates who prefer to call themselves convicts. They feel that inmates are the short timers who don’t understand the prison system, while convicts are the long term jail wise people. I’ve also seen a few politically radical inmates who prefer to call themselves prisoners, thus implying they’re prisoners of war because of Amerikan injustice etc.

(It’s a take-off off the joke “You can tell a Harvard Man, but you can’t tell him much!”)

“Jailbird” might be the word you’re looking for. Kinda informal though.

My uncle was convicted of armed robbery and spent most of his life in jail (my brother and sisters weren’t TOLD that of course, he’s just ‘away’) and when he got out, he came to live with us and was ‘touchy’ as all get out, and we didn’t understand why.

After getting angry at some of our horseplay, one of us teased him about staying in his room all the time like ‘a prisoner’, and boy he hit the ceiling!!

So, I get the feeling, they don’t want to be called anything at all! :wink:

If a person is convicted of a crime, that person is a convict. Period. Whether or not it is wrong to do so (which I realize was the question in the OP) is subjective. But it is unquestioningly the truth. In this day of endless political correctness and euphemism, it is sometimes very satisfying to see certain things exactly as they are, in my opinion.

To answer the original question, I don’t think it’s wrong. And neither do any ex-cons I’ve spoken to, for that matter (this is something I’ve been curious about for a while, actually).

We prefer to be called, “acquitically challenged”
thank you very much. :wink:

Does the term ex-con mean ex-convict? if so how are they able to rid themselves of thier convictedness?, wouldn’t ex-inmate be more correct?